7 Movies Every Professional Should Watch

Most Professionals have little time to devote to anything other than Office and job searching and even less time to watch movies. However, just as every professional golfer has seen CaddyShack and Tin Cup and every pilot has seen Top Gun and Airplane, there is a core-curriculum of movies that every Professional  should see. If you’re an Professional you need to see these movies because they apply to your profession of business, because they contain valuable lessons to be learned and because, frankly, you don’t want to be the only one left out of the joke at the meeting the next time your boss cracks a joke or quotes a line from one of these particular films. So, compiled a list of the Top 7 Movies Every Professional should See. 

(Warning: Spoilers and plot reveals ahead)

1. It’s a wonderful life

Plot – Good hearted man, George Bailey, is down in the dumps. His entire life’s work is on the verge of crashing down. In the pit of despair he contemplates suicide. But before he can act on his impulse he is visited by his guardian angel who takes him on a ride to show him what the world would have been like without good ole George. He sees that life is more than about work and money and when you look at it that way it truly is a wonderful life!

Why it’s an Professional Must?  This story really contains at its root the most important lesson a business man or woman can learn. We Professionals types can easily get lost in the pursuit of money, and we delve into work and put aside life itself searching for profits. It’s an easy trap to fall into but it is imperative that every Professional keep things in perspective.  Money is really not what’s important in life and no job is worth dying over. In the end our family and friends are truly what’s important and it doesn’t matter if we have a good job or are filthy rich or unemployed, life itself is the real prize of living and we should never forget it!

2. Pursuit of Happyness

Plot – Based on true events, The Pursuit of Happyness follows Chris Gardner as he struggles to achieve the American dream. Chris has everything going against him. His wife left him and he’s raising his 5-year-old son alone, without any real income. Determined to provide for his son Christopher no matter what, Chris enters an unpaid internship program at a brokerage firm in hopes of landing the one paid position available at the end of the training program. Sleeping in bathrooms, homeless shelters, and shabby hotels when he’s got the money to afford a room, Chris never gives up on the idea he can land a job and provide his son with a better life. Eventually his efforts pay him well.

Why it’s an Professional Must? – One of the most inspiring movies ever made. It’s a story of a struggling salesman and how he transforms his life through an internship. But the best about the movie is the attitude of the character and powerful performance by Will Smith. For an Professional  it’s a journey of how to pursue your dream and get it with the constant determination. It’s the true story of Chris Gardner. The movie shows how strong will and determination can change a person’s life.

3. Citizen Kane

Plot – Widely considered the greatest movie of all time, this classic is about the rise of newspaper tycoon Charles Foster Kane. Kane is a man who starts with good intentions but gets consumed by the pursuit of power. Citizen Kane takes you through a series of flashbacks as a reporter tries to unravel the mystery of the tycoon’s dying words.

Why it’s an Professional Must? – It’s the best business movie in history. The movie teaches a lesson to any and every potential Professional about the dangers of the path that we are already on! This is an American classic and there really is no excuse for not having seen it but now that you’re a Professional you even more or a reason and less of an excuse.

4. The Insider

Plot – The Insider is a quasi-true story of a man on the inside of a company who is doing wrong. He decides to put an end to it and blow the whistle on the company. However, by doing so he risks his life and the safety of his family. He is faced with a choice of doing the right things and risking his life to do it or keeping his mouth shut.

Why it’s an Professionals Must? – Business ethics are pure and simple. As future leaders, Professionals need integrity. It’s a must and its non-negotiable. Integrity is either something you have or you don’t. It means doing the right thing when it doesn’t matter if you do the right thing or when the right thing is not the easiest thing to do. There is a simple way to test your integrity: Which is worse? Stealing a piece of bubble gum or stealing a million dollars from the corporate account? Do you know the answer?

5. The Billionaire (“Top Secret: Wai Roon Pun Lan”) (Thai Movie)

Plot – Age 16, TOP gained 400,000 Baht monthly from playing online games. Age 17, He was willing to fail school and instead earned money from selling chestnuts for 2,000 baht. Age 18, His family went bankrupt and remained 40 million Baht in debt. Age 19, He released Tao Kae Noi seaweed to more than 3,000 branches at 7-Eleven. At present, Top is a 26-year-old businessman, the owner of the bestselling seaweed in Thailand. He owns 85 percent of the market share which is equivalent to 800 million Baht a year, and has 2,000 employees in his company. The Billionaire will let you get to know Top Ittipat in details about how he turned himself from an online game addict whom always got disparaged by teachers, to a famous young billionaire. How did he raise himself up to this position? Surely, everyone desires to get rich, yet not everyone dares to succeed like him. This movie depicts how Top became a billionaire.

Why it’s an Professionals Must – The way to success I learned from this movie is to: NEVER GIVE UP. You may experience a lot of downs and failures in life, but do not let them stop you from achieving your goal. If you continue to strive for success, you will eventually attain it as long as you don’t give up no matter how many times you have failed before.This movie inspires people who wants to have a successful life, no matter how young we are, we can do same thing just like TOP.  It’s not about the age of a person. It’s the courage we have in ourselves.

6. Up in the Air

Plot – Ryan Bingham’s job is to fire people from theirs. The anguish, hostility, and despair of his “clients” has left him falsely compassionate, living out of a suitcase, and loving every second of it. When his boss hires arrogant young Natalie, she develops a method of video conferencing that will allow termination without ever leaving the office – essentially threatening the existence Ryan so cherishes. Determined to show the naive girl the error of her logic, Ryan takes her on one of his cross country firing expeditions, but as she starts to realize the disheartening realities of her profession, he begins to see the downfalls to his way of life.

Why it’s an Professionals Must? – For an Professional , the movie offers a lot into HR issues, personal issues, communication skills, management and lot more. It’s a nice and a must watch. “It’s not a problem unless you have a solution.” These words are spoken by Ryan’s boss, in response to a young and ambitious employee who complains that the company is wasting money. Identifying problems is nothing more than complaining, unless you have a plan to solve them. There are many such lessons for future business leaders’ aka current Professionals in this movie.

7. Fight Club

Plot – The narrator attends support groups in attempt to subdue his emotional state and relieve his insomniac state. When he meets Marla, another fake attendee of support groups, his life seems to become a little more bearable. However when he associates himself with Tyler, he is dragged into an underground fight club and soap making scheme. Together the two men spiral out of control and engage in competitive rivalry for love and power. When the narrator is exposed to the hidden agenda of Tyler’s fight club, he must accept the awful truth that Tyler may not be who he says he is.

Why it’s an Professionals Must? – If you’ve ever gone to work and wanted to scream at the top of your lungs just how screwed up the place really is but didn’t this is the movie for you. The scariest part of this movie is just exactly how real it actually is. This movie is an inside look at stressed out employee. It’s a case study in bad management and will give you an up close and personal look at exactly what consultants do! (pun intended). As Professional  at one time in our past or some time in our future, we can all relate to this movie and thus it’s perfect to be included on this list.

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