22 Oct

4 Practical Life and Business Lessons from 4 Impractical Jokers

By Libby Esterle, Senior Account Executive
To help weather my way through a recent TV show drought, I stumbled upon, and subsequently began, binge-watching “Impractical Jokers” on TRU TV. For those of you who are not familiar with this hidden-camera show, the basic premise is that four lifelong friends (“the guys”) compete to embarrass each other by challenging each other to complete outrageous, awkward and uncomfortable dares in public.

The show is definitely cringe-worthy and sometimes downright brutal but it is always pretty funny. Even LOL funny at times. However, as a senior account executive for a Cincinnati-based marketing and communications firm, I’ve also come to realize that the guys may have some interesting life and business lessons buried deep within their pranks. So, here goes:

Be Confident. Or at least fake it ‘til you make it if you have to. Being prepared, knowing your material and having confidence in yourself is crucial for gaining credibility and forging solid relationships. But no one is perfect and there may be times that you don’t have ALL the answers. When that happens, follow Joe’s lead here and do your best to turn an awkward situation into a win.

Be Clever.  From Murr trying to get a total stranger to repeat an unusual word to Q “hosting” a fashion show, the guys have to think on their feet nine times out of 10. And it’s hilarious to see what they come up with on the spot. Same goes for working with others– you can’t always predict what will happen but if you can roll with the punches, you’ll be that much further ahead.

Be Creative. I have to hand it to the guys– they know what they are doing when it comes to crafting humiliating and hysterical challenges for their fellow friends. They don’t just think outside the box, they completely reshape it. So, don’t be afraid to entertain crazy ideas at times—they might just work.

Be a Crack Up.  Ok, well maybe not in a professional setting. But everyone makes mistakes, so don’t be afraid to laugh at yourself if and when the situation calls for it. Heck, half the time Sal can’t make it through a challenge without totally losing it.

So, go ahead. Take a seat on your couch, put your feet up and watch a few episodes. You can call it “research” and “ongoing education” and let me know which ones you enjoyed most. Have fun!