DJANGO Your Career Potential

DJANGO Your Career Potential(SPOILER ALERT: There may be portions of this blog that could be considered SPOILERS)

My husband and I finally rented DJANGO Unchained. Aside from being one of the best movies I’ve seen this year, this pre-Civil War western showing the brutality and utter cruelty of slavery, Tarantino style, brought depth to the characters of the film and the stories they told. I can’t say enough about this film and will simply say it was phenomenal and a MUST see at least one time! Oh and the end was totally kick a$s!

In my reflection of this film and this time in history my thoughts eventually swayed from the film content to the HR world. Mind you I’m obsessed with HR, I’m constantly looking at situations through my HR glasses. As of late I have thought a great deal about leadership and employee growth & development.

I then began to think about Christoph Waltz’s career. I questioned “Did he just bust out in the acting world at age 50?” I quickly learned that he’s been acting since 1977, but really hit it big with his performance in the 2008 film Inglorious Bastards. It was at that moment a light went off “Ah-ha”. It was the perfect match; Tarantino and Waltz. Tarantino (director/leader) was able to uncover the natural abilities Waltz always possessed. Tarantino’s direction and vision aided in uncovering Waltz’s his true potential.

Then my mind went back to the film and Jamie Foxx’s character Django. In the film, Django partnered with Waltz’s character, Dr. Schultz, to bounty hunt. Prior to meeting the doctor Django was enslaved. Shortly after working together the doctor noticed Django’s true potential. The doctor (leader) help Django by providing the tools he needed to uncover his full potential and to become the man he was always destined to be. Again, it was the perfect match.

Then my mind  took off and I was recalling many other Hollywood and well-known matches. It’s like the right mix is the path for true potential to be uncovered. In regard to our careers this formula is important to acknowledge. Why? Because when you find your match aka right leader the sooner you can develop and uncover your full career potential.

Ask yourself these questions:
Does your leader recognize your talents? Does your leader bring attention to your special skills? Does your leader provide insight, that helps to guide you on your career path? 

Is your leader uncovering your true potential? 

If you answered no to any or all these questions you may need to start searching for the right leader. You need to find that experienced person that will help guide you to be your best you. The one that will see your hidden talents and help you develop. The one that will help you unchain your full career potential.


Jay Cutler loss to Packers

Microsoft Office Images Photo

Watching the interview with Jay Cutler on the Bears loss to the Packers got me thinking about employees in the “real” workplace. Here are some of the questions that came to mind:

Imagine being interviewed by the media after every work project you completed, especially after a failed work project how would you response? How would you feel? How would you react to hard-hitting questions that demanded immediate responses? Answers that would reflect upon your reputation in your industry? Would you react and communicate differently than you do now in the workplace?

Jay Cutler Reacts to loss video

In the real workplace most employees only have to answer to their boss, manager or superior. Higher level positions such as CEO, President or owners are expected to answer to board members, key stakeholders, clients, customers, possibly the community and more. This level of responsibility brings added stress to the workplace. Do you think this level of stress can impact an individuals performance? If you had to report your job performance failures and successes to multiple groups of people do you think you would have more or less motivation? Or would it even impact your


Bachelor Pad – Take the drama out of the game

Image from

My husband and I watched ABC’s Bachelor Pad finale tonight. I was pleasantly surprised by the outcome. In the past two seasons the winning pair split this money 50/50, but this season was different. One winner walked away drama free and $250,000 richer. How did he carry out this winning? Answer: He took the drama out of the game!

Recap of the final 4: It all came down to the final 4 contestants.  Nick and Rachel became partners late in the game. Chris and Sarah were your typical new Bachelor Pad lovers. Throughout the course of the game Nick stayed low-key. He did not get involved in the normal drama, and emotion that ensues on the show. Rachel partnered with Mike and fell in LOVE. Mike was evicted from the show, and Rachel was left to stick it out with Nick. Chris partnered with a Blakely, then Jamie and lastly with Sarah and fell in love.

The drama of the drama free game: The eliminated players selected Nick and Rachel as the winning pair.  Nick and Rachel then had to decide if they would SHARE the money, or KEEP the money for themselves.   The trick of the game was Nick and Rachel had to cast their votes alone. Should one partner have chosen KEEP and one SHARE, the person that choose KEEP would keep the full $250,000. Nick choose KEEP and Rachel choose SHARE. Thus, Nick was the first full $250,000 winner on the Bachelor Pad series! Rachel, of course began to cry because she deserved the money. The eliminated cast members chimed in with their responses of “That is not fair” “How could Nick do this?” etc. While I understand the emotional ties other cast members had in the game, it is just a game, so I was surprised by the level of shock the other cast members demonstrated.

Nicks game: Nick explained his logic, and clearly stated he was playing a game. Nick explained that Rachel told him many times that she did not want to be his partner, and that she wanted to leave. Nick said he strategically stayed out of the drama and remained low-key throughout the course of the game. Nick also viewed the entire season prior to the finale show. In the viewing he saw and heard the negative comments other cast members made about him. Nick said several times “I played a DRAMA free game. It’s just a game.” Drama free is almost a foreign phrase to reality TV, because the heart and pulse of reality TV is DRAMA, but to be successful in a game it is important to remove the emotion. Since Nick remained drama free he maintained the ability to remove the emotional aspect of the game and stay clear, focus and committed to the end goal.

Real Life Impact: You might be thinking this is an HR blog “What does all this have to do with HR and the workplace?” In my experience drama and emotion impact our ability to think logically and make clear, sound business decisions. When drama enters the workplace our emotions control our responses. Emotional responses lead to drama. More often than not emotion filled responses are not well thought out, inappropriate, unprofessional and damaging.

Reality Check:  There are certain circumstances in the workplace when emotion is right. For example, situations when we need to show compassion, caring, or passion for a topic. The reality is we are human, and we do feel. Feeling helps us build trusting relationships with other people. Trusting relationships create an environment where people can succeed.  There is a right time and place for emotion to be shared in the workplace. We need to exercise our ability to identity the appropriate times to be emotional and use it to our advantage.

Lessons Learned, Questions Asked: “What can we learn from Nick and apply to the workplace?” “How did removing the drama and emotion from the game help him meet his goal to win?” “How can we (as employees) remove drama from the workplace?” “How would a drama free workplace help you, and your company?”

Learn more about creating a drama free workplace with Reality Based Leadership from Cy Wakeman.