So, you love TBBT! Who can blame you. The whole world is going gaga over this American sitcom, and for good reasons. I am a diehard fan too. And let me guess, you love it for the weird quirks and idiosyncrasies of Dr. Sheldon Cooper. Right? High-five! Me too!
I have to say the show is more than just a sitcom. There are so many lessons that we can take away about life as well as career from TBBT, especially from Dr. Cooper. Project managers in particular can learn a great deal of stuff from this great mind. Let me point out a few things about Sheldon Cooper that are sure to inspire all types of managers to perform better at workplace:
- Sticking to the routine
A translation for being disciplined, nobody knows the art of creating a routine and sticking to it religiously better than our favorite scientist, Mr. Cooper. He has a fixed schedule for everything; one night for playing Halo, one night for ordering Pizza, and so on. The interesting thing is, he is able to get everyone else also to stick to his routine as well. Project managers too can learn the art of creating a timeline and making everyone follow it just like he does. Although he is a little too rigid in terms of his weekly activities, managers can leave some scope to introduce changes in project timelines as and when needed. Discipline and routine-work are precious pearls for managing projects. To know how to be a natural at being disciplined, follow Mr. Cooper.
- The importance of organizing
Disorderliness – this is something that makes Sheldon sleepless, literally. That’s probably why he couldn’t sleep knowing that there was a disorganized closet (in Penny’s apartment) right next to his apartment. Dr. Cooper knows the art of organization like a pro.
From labeling the bottom of containers, to straightening out neighbors’ closets, to even sorting out cereals based on fiber content; he is a stickler for organizing everything.Organizational skills are important in context of project management. It makes information easily retrievable. That’s why things like to-do lists for sorting tasks are integral to project managers. And, managers can get inspiration from Sheldon on how to organize things related to project activities, so that there is no confusion at any point of time.
- Speaking your heart out
Cooper once said, “I can’t think of anything I wouldn’t say to anyone’s face”. The guy is the farthest thing possible from political correctness. Although he ends-up driving a lot of people crazy in the process of being a little too honest, but that’s exactly why he is loved by everyone. Managers too can learn to speak their mind from Sheldon. In times of sharing feedback, this trait will help you say what really needs to be communicated. Managers often avoid saying certain things while sharing feedback, thinking that it might hurt the person. I am not saying that you go on bluntly insulting others (the way Sheldon often does; although his intentions are pure and he does not do it on purpose). The point is, if something needs to be shared with employees regarding their performance, do it, just as long as you don’t make anyone feel bad. Share feedback in a progressive manner to promote quality work and growth.
- Being confident
Dr. Cooper is always saying, “When I will get my Nobel Prize…”. There are no ifs; not even a trace of doubt in his mind. He knows he is going to win it. This is the kind of attitude that is needed at workplace. The fate of any project is dependent on how confident the manager is about its success. If the manager himself is doubtful, how can others be confident about project success? Project managers need to be confident that come what may, project will flourish.And, they can learn to be confident from Dr. Cooper as he is never doubtful of what he is going to achieve, which makes him such a great mind.
- Staying focused
Focus is Dr. Cooper’s middle name. When he is onto something, there is no stopping him. He would just immerse himself into it until that thing is done. Everything else becomes secondary. Project managers are constantly juggling with so much throughout the day. Focus is the only thing that can help them to handle a lot in a small time window. And, who better to learn the art of focus than Sheldon Cooper himself? He is a personification of the fact that nothing is impossible if you really set your mind to it. All you need to do is give things undivided attention. Whenever you find it hard to focus on your goals, recall this legendary character and think about how he would do it.
- Appreciating others
Despite the fact that Sheldon often acts like a know-it-all and easily dismisses everyone’s opinions, he is not hesitant to appreciate others. He often says, ‘Sometimes I don’t give you enough credit, Penny’. Whenever someone does something that deserves applaud, Sheldon is the first person you can expect to point it out and appreciate. And, project managers motivating people and getting the best out of them.
When you are ready to learn, everything becomes a teacher, even your favorite TV characters; especially a character like Dr. Cooper can teach you a lot more than you would have ever thought.
What are your thoughts on it? Do share in comments section.