Last weekend I had the good fortune to watch my middle school daughter in a lead role of the local High School Musical production. What amazed me most was seeing how resilient kids can be when faced with microphones the are on the fritz, missed cues, and forgotten lines. They just kept on singing and dancing. Do adults lose some of that resiliency when it comes to our careers?
We all know that working parents are masters of improvisation but do we really take the setbacks that life hands us in stride? When we have to change careers or re-enter the workforce after an absence often we expect a smooth run and are disillusioned when the curtain does not open when we want it to.
As I reflected on the enthusiastic (if less-than-perfect) performance of the HSM ctors I realized that they were constantly adapting to unrehearsed events. One darling actor would occasionally sing off-key during a duet, leaving his partner to either join him singing the wrong notes or rise above and sing the notes on key regardless of what was coming from the other mike. It was a good reminder that in our own careers we sometimes need to belt it out so the back row can hear us. Focus, fearlessness,and the willingness to occasionally trip on our lines are all lessons that can be put to use in the workplace or job search. Who would have thought that High School Musical could teach us such a valuable lesson?