By Marquesa LaDawn
Reality TV gets a lot of heat for so many reasons…it’s dramatic, over the top and at times not very “real.” However, there are some real moments we can all learn from, even for business. Among the lessons:
- Stuff happens! We all need to share our deepest thoughts, fears and challenges with a trusted advise.RHONY’s Bethenny Frankel, successfully created a multi-million dollar brand called Skinny Girl, but faces big challenges in her personal life. She talks through her pain with her trusted advisers.
- Now, we all have this thing called pride, and it will trip us up on occasion. RHONY Housewife, Kristen, showed her grace by apologizing to Sonya about not being supportive of her business. Kristen fell into the peer pressure bubble and judged hard but after her friend Sonya produced a result, she apologized.
- Many entrepreneurs struggle with picking a lane in their business. They become “jack of all trades and masters of none.” Sonya Morgan was all over the place for the longest. She had a business vision but struggled with selling it to anyone. This led to her reputation as a person with a fake business. The good news is that once she narrowed it down and hired the right team to execute, she succeeded.
- Watch out for the critics! RHONY’s Housewife Heather, a successful housewife in her own right, tried hard to mentor Sonya a couple of years back and failed. Sonya was too scattered and Heather wasn’t patient. Now, Heather is being supercritical. Not because she wants Sonya to fail, she knows her big goal and may just have a hard time seeing Sonya get there – her way.
- Although you want to say it, should you? The Real housewives are known for not always having a filter. Reputations have been damaged, relationships ruined, marriages exhausted and true weaknesses revealed, all because of loose lips. At times, I appreciate the candor, it’s refreshing. Most times, it’s not smart to say what you think. Dorinda, the newest NY Housewife has this problem, Ramona is the definition of loose lips, Bethenny can write a book on it (and probably, will); Nene from RHOA, needs helps in this area, Kenya would not win Miss USA in this category and the list goes on!
- Vulnerability equalizes you! Reality TV shows it all and not just the good stuff. If you have a weak marriage, we see it. If you have poor relationships, we see it. If you are breaking the law, it’s revealed. It’s interesting how the fans will love and support even more, when they see you fail. It’s called vulnerability. And, yes, it works in business. It’s creates relationship. I think of Bethenny and how we highly respect her journey to success while being empathetic to her failures, like her talk show and marriage. She always comes up on top and leverages her journey in every way. Heck, she wrote a book titled, I Suck at Relationships. It’s on the New York Times bestseller list!
- Master Emotional Intelligence – Although, showing your vulnerable side will win you points, showing it the wrong way will lose you points. Ramona (RHONY), Phaedra and Nene (RHOA), Brandi and Kim (RHOBH), struggle with processing emotional intelligence.
- Be careful who you trust – This is another huge blind spot for the housewives. Folks are going to talk. It’s not about what they say, it’s about how you respond.
- Set new goals especially outside your comfort zone – RHONY Carole, shocked us by running for president of her New York apartment building board. She has no experience in this area and could have failed miserably. She set a goal, put it out there and won!
- Try to support your friends, even when it’s a challenge – Business people do not like their time to be wasted with mess. But, sometimes that mess comes from a friend that you may care about. Be willing to support that friend, you never know when you may need help. Bethenny showed a huge amount of support for Sonya when she needed it, I have a feeling Sonya will return the favor, very soon!
- Be careful about judging others personal choices – If I hear one more time that Dorinda’s boyfriend is trash, I will scream. It’s inappropriate for folks struggling in their own personal lives to judge others, but we do. Stop it!
- Power still comes with a lot of responsibility – Andy Cohen, is the big boss at Bravo for the Real Housewives franchise. He’s handled that role along with being the host of all the reunions like a true professional. He recently discussed on his WWHL show, how being the Boss can be scary at times. He takes his roles very seriously by not favoring the housewives and judging them in public. I can’t tell you how many times, I wanted him to shut somebody down. But, he goes out of his way to remain in partial. Take this lesson and apply it in the biggest way!
Marquesa LaDawn is a professional businesswoman who escapes the pressures of living in New York City by retreating into the real world of reality TV. Follow me on twitter @realityshowgirl and subscribe to her podcast at www.RealitytvGirl.com.