What cartoon do you get your career advice from? What? You mean you don’t seek career advice from the likes of Scooby Doo or The Fairly Odd Parents?
Well, from now on, I am going to use Spongebob as my #1 go-to source for career advice. Sure, the show lacks the deftly written clever dialog of Phineaus & Ferb and the educational value of Dora the Explorer. But if you pay attention, you’ll notice that annoying fella Spongebob has a fulfilling career, a good work-life balance, and a circle of caring, supporting friends. He must be doing something right!
5 Career Tips from Spongebob Squarepants
So let’s take a few lessons from ole Spongebob and the rest of his colleagues from Bikini Bottom ….
1. If You Love Your Job, It’s Not Work
Spongebob loves his job at the Krusty Krab. He loves hanging out with his co-worker Squidward, he dreads his days off, and he is always excited to get back to work after a holiday. Spongebob takes his career as Krabby Patty cook so seriously that his passion for work has become a part of who he is. Like Spongebob, if you ♥ your job then it doesn’t feel like work — at least not as much!
2. Having a “Can Do”Attitude Provides Job Security
How many times has Mr. Krabs considered firing Spongebob after some crazy misunderstanding? Each time this happens, Spongebob’s positive spirit & “can do” attitude prove his irreplaceable value to the Krusty Krab. When companies are downsizing, executives are more likely to retain those employees with flexibility, creativity and a positive attitude rather than those “squeaky wheels.” Do you show your “can do” attitude to your colleagues?
3. Understanding the “Secret Sauce” Makes You Valuable
Do you simply execute upon the orders of your superiors? Or do you dig-in to actually understand and improve the value proposition your company has to offer? Spongebob knows everthing about the Krusty Krab and its processes, from cleaning the restrooms to running the register. He even knows the combination to the safe that stores the Krabby Patty “secret formula!” Because of this, the competition (Plankton) is constantly trying to hire Spongebob away. Not a bad position to be in!
4. Every Day is a New Day
Have you ever had such a bad day or done something so embarrassing at work that you dreaded going back the next day? I know I have! But look at Spongebob. The entire city of Bikini Bottom could be destroyed at the end of an episode … and yet at the start of the next episode, all is forgotten.
Sure, in real life it’s a little more complicated. People do remember what happened yesterday & last week. But they don’t remember it with the glaring (self) incrimination that you do. Your co-workers are more forgiving (and forgetful!) than you realize. Each day really is a brand new day.
5. Diabolical Schemes to Ruin Someone Else’s Career Always Backfire
Many episodes feature Plankton working hard to steal the Krabby Patty secret formula or to destroy the Krusty Krab. Can you imagine how much more successful Plankton would be if he focused all of his energy on his own business rather than the diabolical ruin of The Krusty Krab?
Same goes for you. Trying to sabotage your nemesis is a waste of energy, makes you look bad, and can even lead to ruining your own career. Take that creativity and initiative and apply it for good instead of evil!
Did you doubt me?
You thought I was about to suggest that you hang-out with that half-wit starfish Patrick eating snacks in the breakroom, didn’t you? No, certainly not. That part of the show I’ll never understand. Seriously, what is UP with Patrick?
And now, in the spirit of today’s lesson, check out this clever Spongebob made from Post-It Notes.
What other career lessons can we glean from Spongebob that I didn’t cover? Certainly I’ve missed a few 🙂
PS: If you *really* love Spongebob, then check out this hilarious Spongebob Duck Tape, lol!