The enforced death of Russia’s heroic pro-democracy, pro-transparency, anti-corruption campaigner – Alexei Navalny – does not just mean the massive loss of one of the world’s most courageous freedom-fighters.

It’s also the massive loss of a great communicator who, because of his forethought, is conveying his thoughts to us still – just days after his murder!




Alexei Navalny knew it was highly likely that his life would come to a premature end as a result of his 2020 decision to return to Russia.

So he recorded a video in Germany in advance to ensure that he would be able to send a final message to supporters.

As the foremost Russian opposition leader, Navalny knew that dark forces in Moscow would try to kill him – because they had already tried and failed.

Navalny had been poisoned with the Russian regime’s favoured Novichok nerve agent – after which his life was saved by being hospitalised in Berlin for a month.

It’s believed Russia’s Federal Security Service was behind this initial assassination attempt which took place in Siberia before he boarded a flight bound for Moscow.

Having then taken the decision to return to Russia from Germany, to carry on his campaigning from inside his country, Navalny knew the same forces would probably seek to end his life again.

However exactly his sudden death was caused, it’s not too hard to figure out who was ultimately responsible for his murder in the severe Arctic prison camp.



If you need any supporting evidence, ask why the Russian authorities are being so difficult about returning Alexei Navalny’s body to his family.

Or ask why all those Russians leaving public floral tributes to their hero are being harassed and arrested.



Because Alexei Navalny knew what his enemies within the Russian regime were capable of – and because he was a master communicator – he recorded a simple, powerful message to his supporters in advance of his presumed imminent murder.

“You’re not allowed to give up!” he directed them.

As clever communicators sometimes do, Navalny sought to use the forces massed against him to work in his favour.

Foreshadowing what seemed inevitable after his voluntary return to Russia, he declared with remarkable positivity: “If they decide to kill me, it means that we are incredibly strong.”

“We need to utilize this power, to not give up, to remember that we are a huge power that is being repressed by these bad dudes.

“We don’t realize how strong we actually are. 

“The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good people to do nothing. So don’t be inactive!”

This can only be rated as highly impressive communication under pressure!




Those of us living in the relative safety of the western world don’t typically have a government out to murder us.

But whatever we’re seeking to communicate at any time, there will presumably often be some much lesser pressures upon us. 

If such pressures ever seem a bit too daunting, Alexei Navalny’s example of standing up to them – and getting his message across in spite of them – may serve as an inspiration!

You can see his post-death talk to the camera here – as it continues to go viral around the world:



Alexei Navalny was also an excellent TV interviewee – even when talking in a language other than his native Russian.

Speaking in English to America’s 60 Minutes programme in Berlin after his initial recovery from his poisoning, Navalny gave a series of direct, fascinating and characteristically fearless answers about his awful Novachok experience and his campaigning for positive change in Russia.






Courageous communication in the face of adversity is a Navalny family trait.

Shortly after hearing from Russian authorities about her husband’s supposed death – news about which she couldn’t be absolutely certain at the time because of past Russian Government lies – Alexei Navalny’s wife, Yulia, was addressing western leaders at the Munich Security Conference.



Clearly deeply affected by the situation – and yet keeping her emotions admirably contained – Yulia Navalnaya demonstrated the same ability as her husband to convey important messages amidst enormous pressures.

She called for international support to ensure that her husband’s killers “will be brought to justice”.

And answering an un-asked question about whether she should be with her children at such a difficult time, she wondered what Alexei would have done in her place.

“I’m sure he would have been standing here on this stage,” she declared.

Yulia Navalnaya received a standing ovation – not a routine audience response at a security conference.

You can watch her performance here:





The courage and ability to communicate amidst powerful emotions and life-and-death pressures is something that requires remarkable fortitude.

However, the skills of talking straight to the camera, delivering a captivating speech and giving great answers in media interviews are – in more regular times – learnable ones.

Sessions to equip you and your team to do so are set out here:



Showing participants and audiences how to enhance their communication skills is something that can be achieved.

Hopefully you will never be subjected to anything like the particular pressures to which the Navalny family have had imposed upon them.

If you ever need to be as courageous under pressure as Alexei Navalny and Yulia Navalnaya have proven to be, you may need additional assistance from beyond this universe!