If you watched the Academy Awards or an Oscar winning movie such as Million Dollar Baby or Slumdog Millionaire, you know the power of a moving picture. They inspire and encourage us to see the world differently, and to see ourselves differently.
So if your career needs some encouragement or a message that motivates you to work harder on advancement or goals, we’ve got some movies for you. The we consists of a power panel of smart career experts, all of whom love movies. The star of this occasional series on movies is Emmanuel Lopez, who has a new e-book Movies for Motivation, and who inspires as a speaker and blogger. He has some worthy co-stars who contribute movie suggestions, who you’ll meet throughout this post.
If you’re looking for encouragement during your job hunt, check out Pay it Forward or Avatar and other movies in my previous blog post. While that focuses on job search flicks, this one aims at those who have jobs but want to improve their lot.
Here’s a half dozen movies to inspire you, advance your career or encourage you to leap into another one:
Erin Brockovich tells the true story of a single mother with no job, no formal education,
no “executive” presence, no money and a recent legal defeat. The movie is recommended by Jean Casey, a certified executive and leadership coach, likes movies enough to mention them on her LinkedIn profile. It also is a favorite of mine. ”With determination, guts, will, smarts, and persuasiveness, Erin, who has convinced her attorney to hire her as a legal clerk, pursues and settles a $333 million environmental legal case against the multi-billion dollar utility company PG&E,” said Casey. Besides this landmark case, which brings Brockvich $2 million, she builds a career as an environmental and legal activist, speaker and whistleblower. Said Casey: “The movie and Erin inspire us to overcome deficits by finding and using our powers, gifts and personal drive to challenge the ‘big guys’ and “do the right thing” for others and ourselves. “
Temple Grandin (2010) is one of the choices of Lopez, the movie blogger and author. Based on a true story of an autistic woman named Temple Grandin, played by Claire Danes, this movie shows the value of persevering and resilience when facing many obstacles. Grandin’s passion for science and solving problems stem from her unique gift for visualizing situations from multiple perspectives. Said Lopez: “Despite many challenges, such as unsupportive people, her passion and persistence allow her to earn a Bachelor’s degree in psychology, a Master’s degree and a Ph.D in animal sciences, and to publish articles while transforming negative perceptions around autism.” People may also learn to transform detractors into believers by watching this.
Tony Curtis and Marilyn Monroe in Some Like it Hot.
Some Like It Hot is a classic chosen by Diane Darling, who runs Effective Networking,This screwball comedy stars Tony Curtis and Jack Lemmon as two musicians who witnessed the Valentine’s Day Massacre, so they join an all girls band to get out of town. There they meet Marilyn Monroe and start falling in love, while cross dressed. Darling sees several messages in Some Like it Hot: “Be careful who you hang out with – you might tick off the wrong person.” And “Be willing to do try new skills – maybe dressing as women is a bit of an extreme, but many people box themselves in and lose out on exploring cool jobs” Plus, no job is perfect.
Chariots of Fire is a circa 1981 British historical drama about two men – Christian missionary Eric Liddell and Oxford student Harold Abrahams – who overcome prejudice and remain dedicated to their callings as they trained for the1924 Olympics. It is
Chariots of Fire tells of two Olympic hopefuls.
recommended by Casey, the leadership coach, who says: “We are inspired by Eric’s commitment to run to honor God and his refusal to run on the Sabbath, as well as the athletes’ integrity as they overcame political pressure, criticism, doubt and defeat on their path to winning gold medals….Today, more than 80 years later, we are enriched and inspired by the two men’s powerful athleticism, training, sacrifices, ethics, team work and dedication to one’s calling – timeless and enduring traits for work and life.”
Finally, blogger and speaker Emmanuel Lopez, whose new ebook Movies for Motivation, gives many award winning suggestions, offers a few:
The King’s Speech , which won several Oscars in 2010, is another Lopez pick and also was recommended by Casey. Based on a true story, speech therapist Lionel Logue, played by Geoffrey Rush, shows great passion for successfully and secretly helping a man control his stammer and give speeches. That man is ‘Bertie’ played by Colin Firth, better known as Britain’s King George VI, who takes the crown when his brother abdicates in a scandal. ” Because Logue has a passion for his profession it gives him exceptional confidence in standing his ground with his process and methods even with the King and Queen. Logue can also be a role model for a successful career that is based on a true gift and skill over traditional schooling since he was not a registered doctor,” said Lopez. Casey sees the king rising to the challenges of duty and services, using good relationships and partnerships, “courage, practice and commitment.”
The Pursuit of Happyness depicts joy, hardship and setbacks.
The Pursuit of Happyness Is a heartwarming flick recommended by Diane Darling – and it was one of my picks for jobseekers too. Based on the life of successful entrepreneur Christopher Gardner, this movie tells of very hard times that go along with pursuing your dreams. Will Smith plays Gardner, who is accepted into a stockbroker training program, right after his wife leaves him in charge of his 5 year old son. They stay in homeless shelters, take the bus and get by as dad builds connections and a career. The movie shows that succeeding at work and life isn’t easy. “People who accept the downs and the ups (and get back up) are the ones who will succeed.”