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“Winter is Coming!” This sentence seems to have more meaning when Indonesian President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) said it during his speech at the plenary session of IMF-WB 2018 that took place in Nusa Dua, Bali, Indonesia.

This was the second time he brought up a millennial style of speech, when delivering his speech at the World Economic Forum on ASEAN, which were held in Hanoi, last September. He fancied himself as The Avengers. As a member of the Avengers, he called out the current condition of the world economic that are heading to the ‘Infinity War’.

The inside story of ‘Avengers: Infinity War’, portrays a figure called “Thanos” that threatens to demolish half of the world population. Jokowi said that he and his fellow colleagues ‘Avengers’ are ready to prevent those things from happening.

During his speech at the IMF-WB 2018, Jokowi allegorize the dominance of the developed countries as the Game of Thrones series. “The thriving technologies shaken up lots of industries in the trade war. The emerging markets are also affected by market pressure.  With lots of challenges facing the global economy, it is the time for us to say that: Winter is Coming,” says President Jokowi.

Both GoT and Avengers have a resemblance in terms of the story line. The Avengers narrates a story about Thanos, he’s worried about the natural resources. He said that it won’t be enough for everyone and there must be something to sacrifice. On the contrary, The Avengers are looking for a diplomatic solution.

Game of Thrones that airs on HBO was adapted from a novel ‘A Song of Ice and Fire’ by George Raymond Richard Martin, the story was about a battle over an authority in the continent of Westeros. Driven by greediness, causing a political intrigue to take control of The Iron Throne of The Royal Throne. They’re to busy fighting over it while at the same time there’s another threat called Beyond the wall. White Walker and Night King are leading the battle in a form of a prolonged winter with the death troopers. The master of darkness can transform human into a wights.

The dramatic analogy is really relevant to reflect the 2018 economic condition.  Through out the whole year, the global economic condition was a bit noisy by the never-ending trade war that triggered most country to be protectionism and egocentric. Even though, there are real challenges waiting ahead such as, hunger, economic gap between the rich and the poor, and global warming which should be our main focus to solve the problem together.

The world seemed to impress by his speech. It sparks a smile from The Managing Director of IMf Christine Lagarde and laughter from The President of The World Bank Jim Yong Kim and other delegates. He’s the first world leader to ever do that kind of speech.

Managing Director of The IMF Christine Lagarde says that Jokowi has a leading standard in delivering his speech. Even The President of The World Bank Jim Yong Kim expressed his inferiority while comparing his speech with Jokowi. “It’s time for us to go home because there’s no way that we can do something better than this”, says Jim jokingly.

He’s also getting lots of praise from Twitter, and even become trending topic on that day until 17.00 PM #GameofThrones have been tweeted for 18,400 times. His speech got recognition from all over the world. I read around five foreign media that wrote a story regarding his speech. Bangkok Pos, New Indian Express, Japan Times, Reuters, The Straits Times said that his speech made the delegates feel tense and gloomy with the news.

Jokowi has made a fun and pleasant atmosphere at the conference especially with that Game of Thrones reference.

His style of speech was actually started at the CEO Forum at the ASEAN-Australia Special Summit March 2018. During the event, he said that a modern politician must be able to compete with Netflix to grab people’s attention. Politicians don’t have any other choice other than changing the politics into a reality show that everyone can enjoy. “Because if we don’t compete, people are only willing to watch “House of Cards” and “Stranger Things”,” says Jokowi followed by a laughter by other world leader who attend.

President Jokowi’s style of speech in several occasion and recent international forum was completely different compared to what other world leader who were used to do which mostly rigid, full of numbers, and meticulous.

He made the speech lighter, and could create a bond with the audience and also utilize the pop culture reference. No wonder, he was bombarded with standing applause.

Storytelling is the most important method for delivering messages by sharing stories, although there’s nothing new about the techniques. Just like eating, storytelling is actually a basic human need. Eat does make us alive, but stories make our life more colorful, said the Irish philosopher known as Richard Kearney on his book ‘On Stories’.

The UK Managing Director of MWWPR, European based PR agency says that in today’s industry 4.0 the ‘secret sauce’ of Public Relations is actually something that has been around for quite a while: Story Telling.

In fact, there’s a report shown on The Holmes based on a survey which conducted by Kethum PR, European based PR agency in 2012 that are agree with this. Based on the poll they did to 650 PR expert from 35 Countries across the globe, regarding the most important factors in a PR campaign, 71% respondents say: Great Storytelling.

Five years later Global Communication Report 2017 from USC Annenberg School for Communications and Journalism released a new fact in regards to the most important trend that will affect the future of Public Relations in the next five years. 88% of the respondent are a PR Professionals and 80% Marketing Professionals and here’s what they say regarding the issue: Digital Story Telling. Even when they asked the student about what will be the next PR trend, the answer stays the same. 72% said Digital Story Telling.

Those insight shows how important it is to have a good story telling skills even in the era of distraction. Just look at the current and most innovative trillion-dollar company like Apple, Facebook, Coca-Cola, Amazon, Google, Tesla. They all understand how to make an intriguing story for the brand.

For Indonesian, there’s no need to go somewhere, just learn on how Jokowi make it with a style of his own.

by Jojo S. Nugroho, Chairman of APPRI

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