Academy Awards 2016: 5 Lessons Every Business Should Learn

5 Things the Academy Awards 2016 Taught Us.
Ladies and Gentlemen, we survived! If you are reading this post you made it through the Academy Awards 2016 broadcast. Last night the world watched last night as the Academy of Motion Picture Artists and Sciences presented the highest awards in film. This ceremony was  anticipated by some and deliberately boycotted by others (I’m looking at you, Jada Pinkett Smith). I can’t remember a time in recent history that involved as much public sentiment that was shown for an Oscars broadcast. The lack of diversity in the major acting category nominees, mainly the absence of black actors in these categories despite well-deserved performances over the last year, spurred public outrage on social media, online community sites and forums.

 

I admit I have yet to see many of the nominated movies, but that holds true for years past as well. In watching the show last night, I realized there were several lessons that can be gleaned. Take a closer look and you’ll see the life skills and business lessons playing out for the world to witness. Below are the five ways to succeed in business shown at the Academy Awards 2016 telecast last night.


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Business Lesson #1: Diversity Matters.

This year’s academy awards ceremony was preceded with controversy about the lack of diversity among the acting award nominees. The #OscarsSoWhite hashtag trended on Twitter several times prior to the telecast. As Chris Rock said in his monologue, “this is the 88th Academy Awards. Which means this whole no-black-nominees thing has happened at least…71 other times.” It is no longer status quo to overlook or discount diverse contributions to any project or body of work…even at the biggest awards show of the year.

In business, diversity ensures
that different ideas, capabilities, experiences, voices and points of view at the table and part of the conversations during all phases of the project or development. The world is bigger than where your local business area. Showing your customers and/or potential clients that you embrace differences will help your business go further and relate to broader audiences.

Business Lesson #2: There is a process to being successful.

The awards [at the ceremony] were presented in an intentional way that represented the film-making process. The first award presentation was for Best Original Screenplay. The screenplay is the foundation to any film. It is the written words and vision that guide the director, crew and actor. The Oscar went to the writers of Spotlight. The next awards were for editing, costume design, sound engineering and so forth.

In business, leaders and employees must recognize the process for things. Understand the flow of projects and how things are made and developed. It is also necessary to honor and award those working behind the scenes (or camera) for their contributions to the final product. Establish quarterly and annual team and individual awards. Let the employees know their work is valued and appreciated. The worst feeling in the work is the feeling of “you don’t matter” at the workplace.

Business Lesson #3: Address the “Elephant” in the Room.

There will be “elephants” in the room. Don’t ignore them. People are watching how the  issues are handled. The Academy Awards ceremony started off with Chris Rock addressing the lack of nominations for black actors his opening monologue. He nailed it! He did a great job, and he did it his way with a comedic twist. There were other moments that hinted and acknowledged that issue facing the Academy. These moments included: Black presenters, The Oscars “Black History Month Minute” and Chris Rock’s Man-on-the-Street Interview at a movie theater in Compton.

 

In business, when an issue arises address it straight-on. The longer issues go unacknowledged the more time there is for speculation and false truths to be spread. Not only address the issue, but offer solid solutions.

Business Lesson #4: Hustle Hard.

Chris Rock invited his daughter’s Girl Scout Troop to sell Girl Scout cookies to the crowd at the ceremony. It was a great “dad moment” and showed those young girls how working hard pays off. In this instance the word “hustle” means working hard enough to reach your goals and going beyond the norm to increase your achievements. The girls raised over a lot of money last night.

In business, the hustle-mentality is a basis for many entrepreneurs. Many businesses are created and flourished because of the ability of the founders to hustle and go beyond their expected achievements. Don’t knock the hustle.

Business Lesson #5: Change is necessary and can be difficult.

Cheryl Boone Issacs, president of the AMPAS, addressed the audience during the Academy Awards 2016 telecast and acknowledged the challenge faced by the academy membership. She made sure the audience knew that the Academy understands the issue. She also talked of a future where The Academy welcomes change and is inclusive of all.

“Change is often difficult, but necessary. I am confident that we can shape a future of which all of us can be proud.”
Cheryl Boone Issacs, president of the AMPAS

In business change happens…often. As industries evolve and customer/client behaviors mature and adapt, businesses must change to meet the current needs and methods of operations. Along with change comes adaptability. When change is necessary, so is adapting to the new way of things – new environment, new direction, new structure, etc. A business’s ability to change and adapt is foundational to continued growth and success.

Businesses can learn from the #Oscars & @chrisrock. Check out these 5 things. Click To Tweet
The Academy Awards 2016 was awkward in the days and weeks leading to the telecast. The controversy around the lack of diversity in major acting nominees created an environment that polarized the public and outspoken actors and directors in Hollywood. However, Chris Rock talked about, joked about and made sure that the viewing audience (and those in attendance) knew that the lack of diversity in the film industry at all levels is an important issue to solve. As in business, certain things are fundamental to success. The five business lessons above help demonstrate why business leaders should’ve paid attention last night.


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Bloop. 

There you have it. Did you watch the show last night? Were the other business lessons that could be learned? Share your thoughts in the comments below.
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Ramona

I'm a female who enjoys french fries and everything associated with them. I am a foodie, a carb lover and someone on a mission to lose the extra pounds. At the core of things, I am a storyteller. Professionally, I’m a marketer. I write about food, exercise, traveling and events. I am a daughter, sister, aunt and friend. Welcome to my life…one post at a time.
RamonaAcademy Awards 2016: 5 Lessons Every Business Should Learn

Comments 39

  1. Bree

    I can really appreciate your translation of what is happening with the Academy Awards and who is in Hollywood to any business. These are are great tips that I hope many businesses consider.

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  2. Pattymac

    Fantastic post Ramona! I did not watch the awards. I never do. It seems so far removed from my daily life that I really can’t relate to them. Your points are on target. And Chris Rock is amazing. I do like the how you correlate the lessons to those of us working in our businesses. That I CAN relate to.

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  3. Allison Jones

    I didn’t see the Oscar’s but based on what I heard, I think you covered it so well. I love that you took teachable moments away from it as well. There’s always something to learn.

    LiveLifeWell

  4. Valerie robinson

    Great points! It definitely takes hard work and the lack of diversity definitely needed to be addressed

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  5. Amber

    I think these are great points! I honestly hadn’t been keeping up with the drama surrounded this year’s awards until I was talking to one of my girlfriend’s about it. I was a little shocked at how repetitive everything was, but it seemed like Chris Rock played both sides very well, and I can definitely appreciate that!

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  6. Maya

    Another business lesson is controversy SELLS! My husband and I NEVER watch the Academy Awards….ever! But this year, we could not resist. It was like having free tickets to a dramatic movie in itself!! It was awesome! Unfortunately, I do not think we will ever watch again, not because its a bad award show…its just not our thing! Great post!

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      Ramona

      Jay, thanks for the comment. You are correct, haters gonna hate. Chris Rock did a great job. It would’ve been a much different show with, let’s say, Kevin Hart hosting.

  7. Suzette

    I’m an entertainment writer and agree with your observations. I enjoyed this year’s broadcast and the production; it was clean, elegant and simple. I admire how Chris Rock addressed the elephant in the room throughout the night, and he did it with elegance and grace. Little jabs here and there to keep the focus on the issue of diversity during the whole show.

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  8. Keisha@bigpittstop

    What about the lesson that your whoopi post brought to mind. Make sure your nerdy people have little pop culture knowledge. Whoopi and Oprah are not the same person. Still marinating on that one

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