Reality TV Proposals for Testing Young Professionals

by Joe Lavelle on September 7, 2010

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If you paid any attention to the recent Emmy Awards or just the line-up of programming that is featured on network and cable television stations, I’m sure it is apparent that reality television is enjoying amazing popularity.  Viewers love the shows because they can see themselves in these characters who become celebrities for living their (scripted?) lives in front of a camera.  Who doesn’t dream of being the next Snooki?  And, TV executives love reality shows because they are much cheaper to produce than a traditional sitcom or drama.

So, how does a career coach get into this lucrative business?  What kind of reality program can be developed that will highlight professionals working to advance their careers through determination, long hours, and networking?

I did my research, and there have been shows that bring a grand prize of a great job for the winner.  If you make it to the end of The Apprentice, you get the opportunity to work for Donald Trump.  If you win I Want to Work for Diddy . . . well, you get to work for Diddy.  Those are great options, to be sure.  But, I want to bring the “real” back into reality.  Here are a couple of my ideas:

Non-Stop Networking: Contestants are placed in a large banquet hall with hundreds of others who are hoping to advance their own careers.  After hours of circulating around the room, the last one standing who still can remove his business card from his suit pocket in under five seconds, offer a firm handshake, and share three ways in which he can be beneficial to the person whose hand he is shaking will be deemed the winner.

Flight School: Young college graduates are sent on trips during which they must face every possible travel nightmare.  Long security lines, screaming babies, lost luggage, seat recliners, drunk seatmates, and unexplained delays will all be a part of the contest.  Who will survive “flight school” and prove themselves ready for a lifetime of business travel?

What do you think?  What are some other reality show ideas that would offer a true test to professionals out there who are looking to advance their careers?

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