Corporate World & Art World – Life Lessons Working Hand-in-Hand.

The Art World makes me want to get out of bed each morning

The “Corporate/Day Job World” keeps the roof over my head that shelters my bed.

Recently I realized how much both have in common and what I’ve learned from them.


Theater World: Never bring your personal drama onto the stage. It will sneak into your psyche and affect your performance.

Corporate World: Leave it at the door – never bring it into a meeting. This will distract you from the agenda and time is short.


Theater World:   Audience laughter, blaring lights, ripped costume, actor forgetting their lines, dancer jabbing you in the ribs too hard, foot cramping. It doesn’t matter – you have to stay focused because the show must go on.

Corporate World: Distractions in the office; people walking by, talking too loud, phones ringing, email, Instant Messaging, urgent-urgent-urgent! It doesn’t matter – you have to say focused and get the job done – on time and 110% presentable – it’s the “roof over your head” – a big motivator.


Theater World: you want them to believe you’re a grandfather (even though you’re 25 years old and a woman). So, you put on the beard, makeup, the jacket/pants/shoes that help you walk and talk a certain way, and yes, they’ll believe you’re a grandfather.

Corporate World: I’m 4′ 8″ and look younger then my years. People respond to me differently depending on how I dress, regardless of how professional I am. That reality took me years to grasp. You want them to believe you can do the job – so I need to where the clothes (the costume) that embraces a professional demeanor.

A side note:

  • When a “corporate” friend would see me in a performance there was always that odd look when they realized there was more to me then they thought.
  • When an “artist” friend would meet me at the day job for lunch and see my “corporate” persona in the “corporate” environment – same odd look.

I’ve  been pre-judged since junior high school – and I still hear from people who are getting to know me, “you weren’t what I thought you would be”.


Writing-Art World: When my sister Joyce and I worked on “Shoe Banter” – our commercial art business, we always made sure our presentations were as snazzy and professional as our $ could afford.   (Side note; this project is temporarily “on the shelf” and in the process of becoming a book – the material is so grand, how can we not.)

Corporate World: All those fancy supplies and special machines in the copy room taught me how to raise the level of a presentation from amateur to professional in a snap! Of course content is just as important.


Theater/Dance World: I choreographed and directed from age 12 to my early 30’s.  I constantly had a calendar under my arm to re-work rehearsal schedules and other related performance logistics.

Corporate World: Breaking down a project or requests in phases, creating checklists, keeping track of timeframes is my natural ebb and flow. It became my selling point during interviews for the day job, “My strength is organizing people and chaos”, I would tell them.

There are many life lessons that overlap and work hand-in-hand. What are your’s?



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