HR Outsourcing

What You Can Learn From Reality TV

By September 23, 2015 No Comments
You may not think of watching TV as an activity that can improve your business acumen. But there are a variety of reality TV shows out there that focus on business operations and exchanges as their source of drama and interest. Perhaps surprisingly, these shows have something to teach us about business, in addition to the fun and entertainment they provide.
The shows we’re talking about fall into two broad types. First, there’s the shows in which an expert parachutes into a failing business in order to bring their particular brand of business know-how to bear and try to rehabilitate the failing venture. Shows of this type include “Kitchen Nightmares,” “Bar Rescue,” “The Profit,” and “Restaurant Stakeout.” The focus in these shows is typically on structure and management. Our experts tend to focus not on the products that these struggling businesses are offering, but rather on the way they’re doing business. The problems are usually procedural or personnel-related. You may recognize the types of policy or methodological issues that are addressed, and be able to apply the lessons learned to your own business. Similarly, you may find that the most outrageous “problem employees” seem very familiar, and you may discover effective strategies for managing these types of characters within your own workplace.
The second type of business-adjacent reality TV show is somewhat broader. It typically resembles a combination of a business procedural and a game show. The prime example of this type is “Shark Tank” and its spinoff “Beyond the Tank,” both of which look at the competitive world of venture capitalism and the people caught up in it. But other examples include “The Apprentice,” and “Flip or Flop.” All of these shows take the basic skills necessary to succeed in most businesses and game-ify them into a competition. As with any type of competition, the best lessons you can take away from these shows are those of emulation and avoidance: what to do and what not to do. Watching contestants on “Shark Tank” or “The Apprentice” can be a masterclass in the art of the sell, teamwork, and personal branding.
You may not want your evenings at home to feel like work, but pay attention when you tune in. You may be missing valuable lessons during what we like to call our “leisure time.”
Modern Business Associates is an HR company that focuses on payroll and HR outsourcing. We routinely work with clients on employment law and compliance. As a Professional Payroll and HR outsource organization, our clients rely on us to help them effectively deal with these kinds of topics.

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