Season two of Netflix’s Stranger Things was released last week, and if you’re like us, you’ve been binge watching ever since. Part Spielberg-esque escapism and part Aliens-like horror, the popular series is almost impossible to stop watching. There is, however, more to it than mere 80s nostalgia…
Here are four career lessons we can learn from Stranger Things.
You can fight off some weird stuff with a team
Teamwork is one of the major themes in the show – and this isn’t just limited to Mike, Lucas, and Dustin working with their new friend Eleven. All the separate groups had to work together to save the day in the end of season one, including Joyce and Hopper, and then Nancy, Steve, and Will. To fight off the Upside Down and stay alive, they all had to come together.
Similarly, when it comes to the career front, you will always get further with a solid support group behind you. Bad interview? Lost out on a job? Your friends and family can help pick you back up. They can also help you find jobs. Your contacts and friends can unlock hidden job opportunities and put in a good word for you once you’ve applied for a job.
Teamwork is also the name of the game once you’ve got a job. If you’re willing to take on projects and help colleagues, they will often be willing to return the favour. Remember, no one can be successful as an island; everybody needs somebody sometimes.
It isn’t crazy if you achieve your goal
When it comes to landing your dream job, persistence usually pays off.
No one epitomizes dogged persistence better than Joyce Byers (played by the ageless Winona Rider).
In season one, Joyce is obsessed with finding her son, even when everyone around her is treating her like she’s crazy. She refused to believe that the body in the morgue was her son, and was convinced she heard his voice. Instead of giving in, she looked for ways to communicate with him and hounded the police for help. In the end, this persistence convinced Hopper, who helped her uncover what was happening.
If you’re looking for career inspiration, look no further. Define your career goals and ambitions, and then be like Joyce.
Don’t let bad blood get in the way
Jonathan Byers and Steve Harrington just don’t get along. One’s a shy introvert who stays home to listen to the Clash; the other is a popular pretty boy jock. And oh yeah, they’re both in love with Nancy Wheeler. Safe to say, they are not friends.
In the end, though, they have to get past their bad blood to survive. In fact, working together (with Nancy) is the only way they can fight off the Demogorgon.
In any company, as in a small town like Hawkins, it’s a terrible idea to burn bridges. Having issues with others is inevitable – you can’t get along with everyone all the time – but you’ll often need to rise above personal issues to fight off your own Demogorgon to achieve team (and personal) goals.
Always stand up for yourself
There are bullies everywhere, from the big city to a town like Hawkins. In season one, Mike and Dustin were ambushed by local bullies Troy and James and held at knife point. The boys were then hunted and bullied by government agents at every turn.
This theme is revisited in season two, when Will is picked on by older kids at school. The thing is, not one character in Stranger Things ever backs down.
You might not have a super tight group of friends, or even a mysterious ally with super powers, but you can always fight for what you believe in. More importantly, you can fight for what you think you deserve. Feel neglected or mistreated at work? Start looking for a new job, and get what you want.
– Follow Workopolis on Twitter
– Sign up for the Workopolis Weekly newsletter
– Listen to Safe for Work, the Workopolis podcast