If you’re one of those people who enjoyed the popular 2004 film Napoleon Dynamite, you’re in for a treat because the animated version is coming to FOX in 2012. Now you’re probably asking yourself why I’m writing about this on a small business blog. Of course once I remind you of all the invaluable lessons Uncle Rico taught us in the original film, you’ll be singing a different tune and wondering when you can start setting your DVR. No small business owner/CEO will want to miss it!
There’s real wisdom in Uncle Rico’s words (played by Jon Gries). You might have to read between the lines, but it’s right there for you. For those of you who are fans of the film, you know what I’m talking about. For others who attempted to watch it, but left the theater or turned it off after the first ten minutes, I urge you to give it another try. Napoleon Dynamite is a cultural phenomenon and should be standard fare at any “serious” university and, arguably, the centerpiece of any company’s professional development program.
Here are just a few of Uncle Rico’s words of wisdom from the original film:
On building a relationship:
UR: “My friends and clients, they call me Uncle Rico.” (note the personal touch)
On managing expectations:
UR: “How much you wanna make a bet I can throw a football over them mountains?”
On the importance of understanding your clients’ business:
UR: “Do you know it backwards and front?”
On time management:
UR: “Might as well do somethin’ while you’re doing nothin’.”
On budget stewardship:
UR: “Napoleon, you know we can’t afford the fun pack. What, do you think money grows on trees in this family? Take it back! And get some Pampers for you and your brother while you’re at it.”
On asking good questions:
UR: “Kip, I reckon… you know a lot about… cyberspace? You ever come across anything… like time travel?”
On getting your money’s worth:
UR: “Oh, I wrote him an e-mail sayin’ I’m gonna contact the authorities if I don’t get a refund in full.”
There are some things you just can’t get in Harvard Business Review! Of course, I could go on and on, but I’ve probably given away too much already. Now for those of you who are familiar with the film, you’re probably thinking that Uncle Rico doesn’t always get it right – like the time he fell victim to Rex Kwon Do. But in the end, Uncle Rico was the big winner.
Revisit the original film, get ready for the animated series, and pay close attention to Uncle Rico. Your business will be the big winner!
Disclaimer: I have no formal training in the area of professional development