I am a BIG fan of Turner Classic Movies. There is something about watching movies that are character based, implied violence, great dialougue beautifully and classily clothed women and handsome leading men that don’t have to worry about political correctness, that puts me in a mellow happy place.
One of my favorite actresses of this time is Judy Holliday. I first watched her in Born Yesterday and thought she nailed the ditzy but really just uneducated blonde well. Like with all my TV watching, I go down the IMDB/Wikipedia rabbit hole. This is when I click on an actor, read the bio, read an interesting tidbit and just keep clicking away. The hole led me to Judy Holliday’s movie, It Should Happen to You and the point of this post.
It’s about a girl from a small town who just wants to be known. She wants this so bad, she purchases signs with her name, Gladys Glover, on it.
In the movie, there is a lot of discussion from other characters on why she did it and who she is. But her character really didn’t have a plan. She listened to another main character’s theory Jack Lemmon playing a documentarian named Peter Shepard, and went for it. His theory was that if you really want something you will find a way to make it happen.
So she walked in the ad agency and bought the signs. Bold.
There’s a time in the movie where sophisticated advertising execs, represented by Peter Lawford, try to get buy her space. They offer her money and more signs. She refuses. While she may not have had a plan, she had a vision. And what she wanted was to see her name in BIG letters. True to herself.
There comes a time in the movie where she realizes that the boldness of the purchase of the signs and the buzz she created will be over. That is the moment she hears her name on TV and she makes her next bold move. She contacts the TV show and gets herself a promoter.
From this she gets a job and so on. Success is hers.
We learn that success can be yours if you’re ready to be Bold, have Vision and if you’re ready to Take Advantage of the opportunities that are presented to you.
This is what being an entrepreneur is about. You have to have the personality to take chances and to understand that those risks may not put your business where you expected. In fact, most times risks don’t put you where you wanted. Gladys lost her man.
You can take that risk because your business has to have a vision and mission. These two elements of business work together help you stay true to your overall plan. While she didn’t have a plan, she know in America that if you are known you can make money. Gladys made a lot.
In this day and age, Gladys would be called an influencer. She received commercial contracts, one from the original ad execs and was interviewed on TV programs just because her name was on a sign. I call today’s celebrities, those with or without talent, the ultimate parlayers. These folks start off on You Tube, make a scene on reality television and then they are millionaires. Gladys was the original influencer.
Now this is TCM and a romantic comedy so she finds out that success comes at a price. And because this is before the women’s movement she has to happily end up with the man who served as the conscience of the movie. But from a business perspective, I learn a lot. Watch it the next time it comes on and let me know your thoughts.