Speak Like Adele: 2 Public Speaking Tips from a Soulful Singer

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The Grammy’s were all about Adele last night. So, I thought I’d jump on the Adele train, too. Truthfully, I’ve been on the Adele train for a long time now ever since I heard her soulful voice a few years ago (and I’m about to rock her CD on my long commute to work this morning).

I know she isn’t a public speaker, but I was truly inspired by her unpretentious, fun, and humble acceptance speeches (and performance) so much that I thought I would write a post about it.

#1 Substance over Style: When Adele performed, there were no pyrotechnics, no annoying flashing lights, no dramatic stage props. Only pure talent. Her voice captured the audience and showed us how amazing she is.

When giving presentations, many people use visuals such as PowerPoint to cover their failing content. The visuals become their “pyrotechnics”. Recently, I did a speech that could have done without PowerPoint. My visuals didn’t really add to the content. Instead, they were used as more like an after thought. Try to wow folks with your speaking talent and use the visuals as a compliment instead of a replacement of the content.

#2 Be Yourself: When accepting her awards, it seemed as though this was how Adele would be if you had met her in person. She seemed unfazed by her Hollywood status, and just gave us herself. (Now, she was chomping on some gum during her speeches. I definitely wouldn’t advocate for that during your presentation, but it was another example of her not fitting the Hollywood mold.) My favorite was when she accepted the Album of the Year award and exclaimed, “Oh, I’ve got a bit of snot!” as she tearfully thanked everyone.

I have enjoyed the best presentations from those people who did not try to emulate others. Those who found their own style and voice. It’s a good idea to use some techniques of others, but at the end of the day bring your authentic self to your presentations.

Who else did you enjoy at the Grammy’s?

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