Tuesday is $5.00 day at our local movie theater. Folks crowd the lobby and huddle about the concession stand to take advantage of the $3.00 small popcorn and coke special. For less than $20.00, friend and I can enjoy one of my favorite pastimes – going to the movies! This week we saw “The Intern“.
“Life imitates art far more than art imitates Life.” Or so says Oscar Wilde.
Whatever is the more accurate, the fact is that art often gives us a glimpse into life we might otherwise not recognize. Not only not recognize, but not realize is something we need to know. And it isn’t just life in general; but our business lives as well.
In fact, I’ve encountered wisdom, insight and “ah ha” moments via film more often than I’ve experienced them from books written by today’s business guru’s. Such was my experience watching Robert DeNiro, retired widower looking to fill his days with meaning; and Ann Hathaway, brilliant founder of a start up online business that suddenly took off with considerable success in “The Intern”. Hathaway’s right hand assistant starts an intern program for “seniors” to which DeNiro applies and is “hired”.
The feel good film is more than just a heartwarming story that provides a respite from real life. It’s a practical lesson is what the wisdom of age brings to 21st century millennials with fancy technology, but little to no practical knowledge about life’s subtleties.
Here’s life & business lessons learned at the movie:
1. Whoa! Business growth is wonderful, but to be sustained it must be controlled. When starting in business of any size; we want to reach the success we desire as quickly as possible. But too quickly can be detrimental if what sustains growth does not grow at the same pace. If sales volume outstrips customer service; at some point we’ll not be able to maintain the level of customer satisfaction we want – more importantly, our customers demand. Bottom line: Grow – but at a reasonable and manageable pace!
2. Hands On! When we’re women who own or partner in a micro-business, it’s no sweat to remain “hands on”. In fact, we might want to be less so and dream of the day when we can hand over major aspects of the business to others. But as we grow and add staff, volunteers, interns or contractors, it’s important to keep our hand in the business on a regular basis because no one – but no one, has the same passion for our business as we do. Stay in the loop and stay connected with your customers in ways they appreciate. And ways that keep your vision fresh and alive as you want it to be!
3. Value Vintage! Us more ‘vintage’ folks may seem out of touch with an ultra-modern 21st century world. Especially if we’re not tech savvy. Yet we have wisdom that surpasses technical knowledge. Don’t assume just because we cling to rather old-fashioned business manners and more traditional approaches to life and relationships, that we have little to offer. Remember the time-tested wedding adage “something old-something new”. And never, but never throw the babies out with the bath water! Find what works for you in business and life with little concern about the era in which it was considered SOP (standard operating procedure)!
4. So What! Probably the greatest aspect of “The Intern” is DeNiro’s advice to Hathaway about remaining CEO of the business she started at her kitchen table. Though looked down upon by the stay-at-home moms at her daughter’s school and a moments shaky marriage when house husband Matt looks elsewhere for companionship; no one in her organization knows what the business is meant to be. No one but the founder whose vision took a start up from 1 to 200+ employees in 19 months. It was awesome to see a 20th century traditional male support a 21st century young woman in the marketplace and encourage her to keep doing what she is doing – even after a moments shaky marriage!
5. The Variance! It doesn’t have to be all long hours, sleepless nights and constant electronic messages. In fact, the wisest lesson is that it not! Take time off. Walk away. Turn a days duties over to trusted assistants and vary your activities. All work and no play makes Jill as dull as Jack.
6. One Last Thing! Don’t go it alone. As soon as possible, bring on others to work with you (not necessarily “for” you). Give them the reins as quickly as they are capable of taking them. Then when the need to walk away comes, you can do so with absolute assurance nothing will break while you are away. And if it does – well the team you have in place is more than able to manage it!
Life and business lessons are all around us. If we open our minds to see beyond the obvious and let underlying important ‘stuff’ filter into our brains, we’ll find that we can take a break to the movies – and learn valuable lessons to use everyday at the same time.
What valuable lessons have you learned at the movies?
Linda S. Fitzgerald, CEO & Visionary Partner
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[author] [author_image timthumb=’on’]https://affiliatedwomeninternational.com//wp-content/uploads/2015/05/linda-google-NB-profile-pic.jpg[/author_image] [author_info]I have a ‘fiery’ passion to see women become all they are designed to be – personally, professionally and most of all – spiritually. I write, teach, mentor and coach with that passion in mind. As an author and prolific blogger, I reach out to women in all walks of life, especially women of faith to empower and equip them for greatness. [/author_info] [/author]
Image Source: The Newport Beach Film Festival at Google Images