Important business lessons can be learned from the famous movie, The Devil Wears Prada, even though it was meant as light entertainment when it was released 17 years ago.
The 2006 comedy drama stars Meryl Streep as demanding New York fashion magazine editor Miranda Priestly and Anne Hathaway as her new assistant Andrea Sachs.
Sachs despises the fashion industry but plans to use her job at Runway magazine as a stepping stone to becoming a reporter or writer elsewhere in a year’s time.
Initially, she finds it hard to cope with Priestly’s excessive demands and habit of humiliating employees in front of the whole team. However, over time, Sachs is swept up in the fashion magazine’s ethos and learns her craft well, in spite of her challenging working conditions in the shape of her boss.
Without wishing to issue a spoiler alert, after seemingly losing her way almost without realising it, she eventually finds it again.
This roller coaster ride through the New York fashion industry was said to be loosely inspired by an assistant to Vogue editor Anna Wintour.
Despite Priestly being an unlikeable character for most of the film, in the years since its release, managers have realised some key business lessons can be learned by studying it.
In particular, it shows the value of business networking in the corporate world. It also teaches viewers how to build relationships in business and all about managing time efficiently – skills that transform even rookie Sachs into a successful executive.
Networking and mentorship
Perhaps most importantly, the film recognises the value of networking and building relationships – two attributes that are vital, no matter the industry.
Despite her initial dislike of her job and manager, Sachs soon learns the importance of fostering good connections, and how they could help to advance her career. It also highlights how mentorship can be incredibly valuable, even in challenging or unexpected forms.
While Priestly is portrayed as a demanding boss, Sachs still learns a good deal from her, which shapes her professional growth.
The film shows the importance of dedication and hard work, portraying Sach’s willingness to go the extra mile through hard work and dedication, and how that pays off in the end.
She learns the ins and outs of the company culture, the fashion industry in general and the business’s values. Understanding the nuances of the industry also helps her to succeed in her own role.
In addition, the film shows the importance of efficient time management in a fast-paced office environment, where juggling multiple tasks and recognising priorities is a challenge for just about everyone.
While Sach’s job seemed to revolve around long working days, unreasonable expectations and a lack of opportunities, she reaped the rewards of her hard work.
With the opportunity to go to Paris and attend many glamorous fashion shows, this ignited her passion for an industry in which initially she had little interest.
While nobody wants a boss like Miranda Priestly, The Devil Wears Prada shows us that it’s possible to succeed even against the odds by embracing your role, working hard, networking and learning your craft well.
Some of the lessons Sachs learns can translate into the modern business world.
For anyone working in a creative role, such as in the fashion industry, being based in an appropriate environment is important to your success. Surrounded by fashion designers, marketing people and other creative types, Sachs is increasingly swept up in the excitement of her job, and she finds she’s enjoying it. Working in serviced offices in London is an example of how people can come together and thrive in an inspirational environment that provides true flexibility. It gives you the freedom to run your business, including growing your SME or start-up, while allowing someone else to take the strain of maintaining the building, providing the internet and stocking the kitchen.
When you’re looking for award-winning serviced offices London-wide, our BE Offices’ facilities are hard to beat. We’ll look after everything in exchange for a simple monthly fee.
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