top of page

Why Your Workplace Is Like A Horror Film

When you think of a scary movie, the last thing that probably comes to mind is your workplace. However, you'd be surprised to find that the elements that make a horror film spine-chillingly effective are the same elements that can make or break your success in sales and leadership roles. Here are a few examples:

A Memorable, but Frightening Menace

Scary Movie: In every horror film, there's always a memorable villain—be it a ghost, demon, or psychopath—that keeps you on the edge of your seat.

Workplace: In the corporate world, this villain could be changing market dynamics, aggressive competitors, or even internal challenges like employee turnover. Your villain could be inaction. These 'villains' are frightening but memorable because they force you to adapt and grow.

Clear Rules to Live By

Scary Movie: Survival in a horror film often depends on following a set of clear rules—don't go into the basement, don't split up, etc.

Workplace: Sales and leadership roles come with their own set of rules—meet your targets, maintain client relationships, and so on. Every Butler Street training includes The Four Cornerstones of Success® - straying from these rules and cornerstones will definitely increase your chance of professional 'doom.'

Plenty of Characters Who Could Disappear at Any Moment

Scary Movie: Characters in horror films are often expendable, and you never know who will make it to the end.

Workplace: In a competitive environment, roles can change, and people can leave or be let go unexpectedly. This uncertainty necessitates the need to be a continuous learner, always increasing your skills to stay relevant. Online training programs provide an excellent opportunity to strengthen and expand skills to help you become indispensable. Or partner with client and talent development experts to help guide you and prepare you for success.

The Element of Surprise

Scary Movie: The element of surprise keeps you engaged in a scary movie. Anything can happen, and it usually does when you least expect it.

Workplace: Market trends can shift, new competitors can emerge, and clients can change their minds. Being prepared for these surprises requires preparation, adaptability, and a willingness to embrace change. To help avoid surprises, salespeople should use a client meeting plan for every meeting, account managers should schedule QBRs, and leaders should have weekly 1-1 meetings with their team. If you aren’t currently doing these steps, learn more.

A Backstory That’s Key to the Monster/Villain’s Purpose

Scary Movie: Understanding the backstory of the villain often provides insights into their motives and weaknesses.

Workplace: Knowing the history and dynamics of your industry, your competitors, and even your own company coupled with being in your customer’s operating reality offers valuable insights that guide your strategies and decisions. (Salespeople – A Client Meeting Plan will arm you!)

Proper Theme Music

Scary Movie: The soundtrack of a horror film sets the tone and heightens the tension.

Workplace: In the corporate setting, the 'theme music' could be the company culture and work environment that influence employee behavior and performance. Build company culture through effective leadership and emphasizing The Four Cornerstones of Success®

Common Themes: Ghosts, Psychopaths, and More

Scary Movie: The best horror films explore various themes, from ghosts and vampires to psychopaths and serial killers.

Workplace: Similarly, you'll encounter a range of challenges in sales and leadership roles—from managing a difficult client (the 'psychopath') to navigating a market downturn or the candidate or client that suddenly goes dark (the 'ghost').

Just like a scary movie, the workplace is filled with its own set of challenges and 'villains.' But instead of running away, embrace these as opportunities for growth. Be a continuous learner, enhance your skills, and don't be afraid of change. After all, the protagonist in a horror film often survives by adapting and learning from their experiences. Why shouldn't you?

The next time you find yourself in a 'scary' workplace situation, remember these elements and act accordingly (if you need help doing that, contact us). You might just find that you're better prepared to face the 'monsters' that come your way. We like being the partner that helps save the hero in the nick of time (the hero is you!).


bottom of page