It’s been about 17 hours since David Cook was announced as the American Idol. I don’t normally blog about entertainment news, but I’ve got to say, I’m really pleased he won. I’ll be the first to admit that his performances during the finals weren’t his best, but I still think he deserves to win, on the strength of the whole season. This isn’t meant as a put down of Archuleta, he’s got a great voice, but I don’t think he’s ready yet.

There are two main things that set David Cook apart from Archuleta, in my opinion. And they are things we can all learn and gain from, even if we aren’t in the entertainment business.

The first thing that David Cook has over Archuleta is stage presence. He’s got more confidence on stage, and carries himself better. Archuleta’s movements on stage still seem very awkward. David Cook, on the other hand, looks right at home on stage. He looks really comfortable there.

Secondly, and more importantly, David Cook is original. His originality set him apart from every other contestant this season. If you need proof, just check out his version of Mariah Carey’s “Always be my baby“, and compare that to the original. He heard things in songs that nobody else heard. He re-arranged songs in ways nobody else did. And to me, that’s what sealed it for him.

Two lessons that can be applied in all walks of life. Your presence – your confidence in yourself, how comfortable you are wherever you may be – makes a difference. And more importantly, originality has great value.

Picture by meagan383