I’ve recently been introduced to Mad Men – via Netflix. It’s rare to find me sitting in front of a television. But on the few occasions where I do come across a great show, I’m hooked.
By the time I watched an episode of Sex and the City, the show had already finished its run. I’ve watched every episode now, at least twice, and like to dream that I might have been Carrie Bradshaw had I not been so afraid of… everything… when I was younger.
But I digress. This time around, it’s Mad Men. I’ve worked in Marketing my entire career. The bulk of that time has been spent on the agency side, and it truly is much like Sterling Cooper – sans the alcohol and cigarettes.
I’ve learned a few things watching Mad Men (boy, have we come a long way, baby!). Foremost among them, that it’s not the Men on that show who are mad (although they are sexy!), but the women. And rightfully so! Here are a few tips straight from the Sterling Cooper office that will make you more of a Mad Woman when it comes to your career.
- Accept a drink when it’s offered. This isn’t to say you have to drink it, but if you want to sit with the big dogs, well, you’ve got to ante up. Take the glass, sit down, and simply hold it while you lean into the conversation.
- Act the part. Frumpy dress, frumpy job. Sorry, it’s true. Treat yourself with respect, and it will be returned to you. You’ve heard the phrase “dress for the job you want, not the job you have,” right? It’s true. Look the part. Act the part. And voila… you’ve got the part!
- If a person seems too good to be true… well…. Dashing Don Draper is gorgeous, successful, smart and creative… he’s also a cheater and a lair. Too bad.
- Everybody’s got an ulterior motive. Even the priest. Half way into Season two, that’s crystal clear. But don’t let it worry you. You’ve got your own agenda, haven’t you? Stick to your guns, stay true to yourself and follow your dream.
- Take credit. And give credit where it’s due. You are your best (and sometimes only) advocate. You must tout your own accomplishments (without being a braggart).
- Believe. Believe. Believe. If Peggy can nab her own office next to Don, well then, what makes you think you’re not capable of the corner office, the promotion, the… whatever it is you desire?
When it comes to your career, you are in control of how hard you work for it. So grab the bull by the, um, horns, and show ’em what you’ve got to offer. The mad men of the early ’60s have become the Mad Women of the 21st century. No games, no bull… just talent, ambition and confidence. Now that’s sexy!
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