Career Lessons From 'Jersey Shore'

Jessica Livingston
Posted: 08/16/2010

Sigh. I can’t believe I’m doing this. Seriously, I feel like I’m sinking to a new low. A low so low I’d need to dig up to see sunlight. But, here goes: Career Lessons from Jersey Shore. If you’ve been living under a rock, Jersey Shore is an inexplicably entertaining reality show on MTV about some idiots who like to get drunk and party, featuring characters named "Snooki," "The Situation," "JWoww," etc.

So what can you learn about your career from these Mensa candidates?

Do what you do best. The cast of Jersey Shore drinks, parties, and gets girls into the hot tub (presumably by knocking them out with a club and dragging them by their hair). They’re not out lobbying for environmental bills or performing surgery, or even, I don’t know, getting a book from the library. Why? Because they’re good at drinking, partying, and getting girls into the hot tub. Know thyself, and get a job that fits into what you want to be doing and what you’re good at.

Have a work mantra. "GTL" (or Gym, Tan, Laundry) is the rallying cry of the boys of the Jersey Shore. It’s like their daily affirmation, and it gives them a check list of important things to finish. What’s your work mantra? Whether it’s "ABC–Always be closing" or "Greed is good," get something that motivates you to do the best job you can.

Know that it’s an ensemble cast. While all the characters are pretty entertaining on their own, whether it’s The Situation showing off his abs, or Snooki wandering around with puffy slippers and puffy hair and saying things that are mildly incoherent. They’re entertaining, that is, for about five minutes. Try watching an hour of that, and you’ll want to stab yourself in the eye with your remote. The beauty of this show is that it bounces from one carnival side show to another. So at your job, remember that you don’t always have to be the star; your team is equally as important in getting the task done.

Be liked, or be hated, but get people talking about you. Whether or not you watch Jersey Shore, you’ve probably at least heard of it. And if you watch it, you might not like it, but you’ll be unable to stop watching. And that is why there’s a second season of the show, with a third in the works. Now, it’s probably not best to have everyone at work hate you. But, they could be jealous of you for your sales or your killer presentations, or whatever. The point is to sell yourself. You could be the best damn worker in the office, but if no one knows who you are, it doesn’t matter at all. If you want that promotion, you have to have buzz around you, and you have to be known!

Quick editing does wonders.
Seriously, in an hour episode of the Jersey Shore, there’s probably about 15 minutes of original material. The editors chopped, chopped, chopped, until they essentially had a highlight reel. There are teasers before the commercial break of things to come later in the episode, and when the show comes back from commercial there are clips of what just happened. When you’re interviewing or when you have your evaluation, there’s no need to bring up every little thing you’ve ever done. Give the good stuff, the stuff the hr manager or boss would be interested in. And it’s OK to recap later, for example, "Like I mentioned earlier I’m a great leader because I manager a team of 20 and made $1 million in sales last quarter."

So is there anything else you can learn from Jersey Shore? Talk amongst yourselves in the comment section while I go look for my dignity.

Jessica Livingston
Posted: 08/16/2010

Banner1

Join HR Exchange

EVENTS OF INTEREST

Southwest Airlines Training & Operations Support (TOPS) Building , Dallas, TX, United States
January 24 - 24, 2018
Hotel Palace Berlin, , Germany
January 28 - 30, 2018
United Kingdom
January 29 - 30, 2018