This season of Fox’s So You Think You Can Dance is unlike any other. The show has adapted a new “Stage vs. Street” format that has really amplified the competition.
The new format has attracted a ton of great talent this year, making the judge’s jobs extremely difficult. Contestants, who would have made the top 20 easily in seasons passed, got a one-way ticket home this year. They couldn’t make the cut; the competition’s just too fierce.
Which, really, while heart-breaking for these dancing hopefuls, is pretty real-world, everyday drama for a lot of everyday people.
This year, nearly three million university graduates joined the workforce with hard earned degrees, fighting tooth and nail to land a mere interview in this competitive job market of ours, as the unemployment rate hits its lowest level in years.
Working professionals with years of experience now compete with recent grads for the same entry-level jobs, making the job market as fierce as this season’s SYTYCD competition.
That said, this season’s top 20 have an upper hand in comparison to others chasing their career dreams off-camera. And it’s not just because they’re on prime time television.
To make sure they stay on the show as long as possible, to propel their dancing careers as much as possible, the SYTYCD contestants employ three basic strategies into their dance routines.
These strategies apply on the stage, on the street, and in the job market.
1. Work well as a team or perish…
Though the show has branded this season as a competition between the trained stage dancers and the self-taught street dancers, it’s abundantly clear that the success of the show relies on teamwork, kicking night one of lives off with a unified group performance.
Street team captain, tWitch, blogged about the teamwork between Stage and Street. And Jason Derulo even praised Jaja, the fierce female street dancer’s group for shining individually and then coming together and rocking it.The same applies in the work force. Employees need to perform well individually and as a cohesive unit with co-workers. Employees hired as customer care reps differ drastically in training and personality from their accounting co-workers. But their ability to work well together directly affects the organization’s success. Employers hire and promote team players. During interviews, give examples of how you’ve rocked it as a team. On the job, work together with co-workers. Because when it comes down to it, it’s a group effort. Perform well with the team, or go home.
2. Prepare for the life you want…
Whether season 12’s dancers were formally trained on the stage or self-taught watching YouTubes and battling at events or clubs, they have a drive to succeed, and they’ve prepared their entire lives for an opportunity to turn dance into a career.Prior to their acceptance on the show this season, each dance recital and battle had a big fat question mark at the end of it.
As tWitch said during an interview with KROQ’s Kevin and Bean, to what end their dancing was leading to, before this show, was unknown.Today, employers hire candidates with proven experience. This makes getting a decent job out of college or changing career paths extremely difficult. Though, not impossible. Job seekers can arm themselves with online portfolios showcasing their work, college internships to gain resume-worthy work experience, and LinkedIn reference letters from connections. If you’re dying to enter into the beauty supply industry, start your own beauty blog to showcase your knowledge and passion for the field. With the proper preparation, you’ll be ready once that once-in-a-life-time opportunity pops up unexpectedly.
3. Give 100%, 100% of the time…
Some immediate favorites, such as Ladia Yates, didn’t make the top 20 this season. Not because talent was lacking, but because the dancer had one or two bad days on the stage. The show’s—and the contestant’s—success depends on the dancers performing at their best every single time. If the performance isn’t stellar, ratings and votes drop. Period.Likewise, employers need employees who perform at optimal levels on a regular basis. Yes, more and more companies have followed in Google’s open cultured footsteps. Don’t fool yourself though. Awesome company culture or not, employers still need results. While any good company would show understanding and compassion during an employee’s time of need, your boss won’t keep you around for very long if your work performance suffers every time you wake up on the wrong side of the bed. You better bring it.
The dancers on this show blow us away season after Emmy winning season because they’re constantly evolving to remain competitive in their craft. Which really is something we should emulate with our own careers.
And so, yes, they do think they can dance. What do you think you can do?
Cari Stark earned her B.A. in English and creative writing at the University of California, Irvine in 2013 and is now the Marketing Manager for College Works Painting, a college internship designed to give students the opportunity to build a competitive resume to help them land their dream job when they graduate. Check out their free career tool kit to learn how to improve your career!
Cari is also a mother to a goofy little boy and a wife to a hilarious man. Her boys keep her laughing constantly.
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