World Champion of Public Speaking 2017

​What are the three most important things we can learn from the 2017 World Champion of Public Speaking - Manoj Vasudevan?


What are the three most important things we can learn from the 2017 World Champion of Public Speaking - Manoj Vasudevan?

​​In August 2017, ​Manoj Vasudevan beat 30,000 other competitors in a six-month long competition, culminating in being crowned World Champion at Toastmasters annual convention in Vancouver.

​In August 2017, ​Manoj Vasudevan beat 30,000 other competitors in a six-month long competition, culminating in being crowned World Champion at Toastmasters annual convention in Vancouver.
In July, I accepted the role of Toastmasters C3 Area Director within District 17.  One of my clubs is a little remote though.  It's in Karratha - 1,500 kilometres from Perth, where ​I live.


​​What are the ​most important things we can learn from this.  Read this week's blog to find out.

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​(The video above is an abbreviated version of the speech.  ​If you want to see the full version of his speech, you can see it here.)

​Structure

​​​If you want to become a World Champion of Public Speaking, you can use many different structures in your speeches, but here are some key elements that Manoj included, that you might want to consider using yourself.

​If you want to become a World Champion of Public Speaking, you can use many different structures in your speeches, but here are some key elements that Manoj included, that you might want to consider using yourself.
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    ​​Open by setting the scene - "I was 24 years old, I had a nice job, nice car, nice hair."
    Opening that set the scene - "I was 24 years old, I had a nice job, nice car, nice hair."
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    ​​Relate the situation to the audience - "Have you ever problems in your relationships, with others?"
    Related the situation to the audience - "Have you ever problems in your relationships, with others?"
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    ​Introduce a problem that everyone can relate to but made meaningful by being put in the context of a personal story.
    Introduced a problem that everyone can relate to but made meaningful by being put in the context of a personal story.
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    ​​Provide the audience with a contrast frame to the success he desires, showing that his friend got divorced.
    Provides the audience with a contrast frame to the success he desires, showing that his friend got divorced.
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    ​Introduce the mentor (his Mother) who provides the essential advice to solving his problem.
    Introduce the mentor (his Mother) who provides the essential advice to solving his problem.
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    ​Implement the advice, and achieve a successful outcome.
    Implement the advice, and achieve a successful outcome.
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    ​The personal problem he encountered is broadened to include relationships across the globe and where there are currently problems.
    The personal problem he encountered is broadened to include relationships across the globe and where there are currently problems.
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    ​He suggests that the same principle could help solve a lot of these problems.
    He suggests that the same principle could help solve a lot of these problems.
Check out the video at the top of this page to see a quick version of the flight from Perth to Karratha.

​​Humour

​​​​It is not essential to have humour in a World Champion of Public Speaking winning speech, or in your speeches.  However, it is a great asset to have, if you can pull it off.  Here are some examples of humour that Manoj included in his speech:

​​​It is not essential to have humour in a World Champion of Public Speaking winning speech, or in your speeches.  However, it is a great asset to have, if you can pull it off.  Here are some examples of humour that Manoj included in his speech:
Since then, Karratha has developed due to iron ore operations, sea-salt mining, ammonia export operations and the North West Shelf Natural Gas Project, Australia's largest natural resource development.
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    ​​"I had a nice job, nice car, nice hair."  The third item here "nice hair" is humorous because he is now bald.  This technique is called the rule of 3, where you lead the audience to believe that you are going to talk about three serious items, but include a lighthearted item at the end to add humour.  It also ​helps get the audience on side, as he is letting them know that his style of humour is self-deprecating and makes the audience feel safe.
    ​"I had a nice job, nice car, nice hair."  The third item here "nice hair" is humorous because he is now bald.  This technique is called the rule of 3, where you lead the audience to believe that you are going to talk about three serious items, but include a lighthearted item at the end to add humour.  It also ​helps get the audience on side, as he is letting them know that his style of humour is self-deprecating and makes the audience feel safe.
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    ​"Guess what, it seems that cupid doesn't live in India."  ​Before this statement, Manoj has been building an expectation that he was going to be talking about how he found his perfect partner.  The statement above demonstrates in a humorous way that he had trouble succeeding here.
    "Guess what, it seems that cupid doesn't live in India."  ​Before this statement, Manoj has been building an expectation that he was going to be talking about how he found his perfect partner.  The statement above demonstrates in a humorous way that he had trouble succeeding here.
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    ​ ​"A few weeks later, on the fourth of July, we got married.  On American Independence Day, I lost my (looks down and pauses) independence".  Here Manoj built the expectation that he was talking about losing his virginity.  Instead of saying this though, he took the statement in a different direction.  He introduced a dry concept (losing your independence) humorously, by implying that it wasn't the only thing he lost.  The humour entices the audience to hear more and makes them feel invested in the concept.
     ​"A few weeks later, on the fourth of July, we got married.  On American Independence Day, I lost my (looks down and pauses) independence".  Here Manoj built the expectation that he was talking about losing his virginity.  Instead of saying this though, he took the statement in a different direction.  He introduced a dry concept (losing your independence) humorously, by implying that it wasn't the only thing he lost.  The humour entices the audience to hear more makes them feel invested in the concept.
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    ​​​"I even introduced her to a role model.  Darling, why can't you be perfect like (pause and next word said in a high squeaky voice) me?"  The audience is expecting a mentor at some point in the speech.  Here Manoj humorously includes a false mentor - himself.  By doing this, he is letting the audience know that he has made mistakes in his life but has learnt from them.
    ​"I even introduced her to a role model.  Darling, why can't you be perfect like (pause and next word said in a high squeaky voice) me?"  The audience is expecting a mentor at some point in the speech.  Here Manoj humorously includes a false mentor - himself.  By doing this, he is letting the audience know that he has made mistakes in his life but has learnt from them.

​Metaphor

​​​To become the World Champion of Public Speaking, you only have 5 - 7 minutes to ​get your message across.  Metaphors are a potent tool to help you achieve this.   In this speech, the solution is presented to Manoj by his Mother as a bow and arrow metaphor. How does it work?​

​To become the World Champion of Public Speaking, you only have 5 - 7 minutes to ​get your message across.  Metaphors are a potent tool to help you achieve this.   In this speech, the solution is presented to Manoj by his Mother as a bow and arrow metaphor. How does it work?​
​On Sunday I ran an Impromptu Speaking workshop for Karratha Toastmasters club members and guests.   I have this workshop for two reasons.  Firstly, club members don't have much access to District Training, and so it was a great opportunity to help build their public speaking knowledge.  Secondly, it was a chance to market the club to potential visitors.  The session included ​sections​:
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    ​The bow and arrow represent two different people in a relationship, who have different priorities in their life.
    The bow and arrow represent two different people in a relationship, who have different priorities in their life
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    ​If the bow bends too much, it will break.  This bow staying in one piece represents the relationship working.
    If the bow bends too much, it will break.  This bow staying in one piece represents the relationship working.
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    ​The bow will break if you pull the arrow back too much.  The arrow represents one person in the relationship expecting too much of the other.
    The bow will break if you pull the arrow back too much.  The arrow represents one person in the relationship expecting too much of the other.
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    ​​Pull less, bend more.  Out of context, this doesn't make much sense.  However, in the framework of the bow and arrow, it provides the audience with an "Ah Ha" moment.  It forces the audience to ask themselves when they have been too demanding of people?  How could they be more compromising to ensure the relationship works?
    Pull less, bend more.  Out of context, this doesn't make much sense.  However, in the framework of the bow and arrow, it provides the audience with an "Ah Ha" moment.  It forces the audience to ask themselves when they have been too demanding of people?  How could they be more compromising to ensure the relationship works?

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Martin J O'Connor
 

In 2015, Martin was the District 17 Toastmasters Table Topics Champion and came third in 2014. He was in the District 17 final of the Humorous competition in 2015 and is in the District 17 final of the Evaluation competition in 2017. He is very proud to be a founding member of Competitive Speakers Perth Toastmasters club.