You may think the Kardashians are overrated or annoying. You may even dismiss their 10-year-old reality TV show as ridiculous.
The Kardashians are an empire and they are one of the most business-savvy families of our time. My husband, a button-down accountant, is hooked on Keeping Up With The Kardashians. The reality TV show is his guilty pleasure. He rarely misses an episode. At first I made fun of him. Now, I sometimes watch the show with him, and when I do, I learn something each time that could benefit my career —and yours too!
The Kardashian-Jenner family are millionaires because they work hard and they work smartly. The five sisters and their mother,Kris Jenner, have created a lucrative franchise by employing tactics that you and I should be using. From watching the family in action, here are some strategies to consider implementing.
- Make every trip a combination of fun and business. The sisters (Kim, Kourtney, Khloé, Kendall and Kylie) will go to Italy or New York and combine sightseeing with a paid appearance or a meeting with a potential business partner. We can all do this type of travel blend if we plan in advance and think strategically.
- Realize teamwork prevails. These sisters have each other’s backs and want to see their siblings succeed. Despite all the drama that unfolds, the sisters always rally behind each other. They will show up at each other’s appearances and fill in for each other as needed. We all need to build a team like that around us. It is that sense of team that has kept America fascinated with the family and has helped create the Kardashian brand.
- Highlight your strengths. The Kardashians are trendsetters because they use their sense of style to be their best selves and play up their strengths. Some of the sisters are curvy, others are lanky. But all of them have learned how to dress and use makeup to flatter their best features.
- Laugh at yourself. The Kardashians often make fun of themselves, or each other, but in a loving way. It’s what makes them relatable. On a recent episode, Kim unpacked Chloe’s suitcase without her knowing, and repacked it with more stylish outfits from Chloe’s closet that she rarely wears. Instead of getting mad that Kim was insulting her sense of style, Chloe laughed and wore the outfits. She realized she looked good in what Kim picked out. If done in a loving, well meaning way, we can all take advice from someone who means well.
- Find the opportunities. If there is anything the Kardashians prevail at it is finding opportunities. Sure, brands clamor for the women to endorse their products. But Chris Jenner, the family matriarch, seizes on those opportunities that are the right fit and turns down those that aren’t. Being successful isn’t about grabbing every offer that comes your way. It’s about finding those that fit with your personal mission and will benefit you long term.
- Resist getting caught up in the negative. Life is messy and even money and fame does not make you immune. The Kardashian-Jenner family has had their share of failed marriages, fertility issues, commercials gone bad and even a robbery. However, they publicly deal with their heartache and then they move on. Their support for each other is a big part of their ability to do that.
- Stay one step ahead. If there’s a new trend, the Kardashians are early adopters. They take chances with style, language, and social media. Because their fans follow what they wear, how they talk and what they do to stay in shape, they have created a lifestyle that others aspire to copy. The sisters do not need everybody to love them, which is why they ignore the haters and are willing to try new products or agree to new ventures. By doing so, they stay in the spotlight and remain relevant. It’s really about looking at what’s ahead and being okay with stepping out of your comfort zone.
- Make downtime. On a recent episode three of the five sisters took a roadtrip to bond. When is the last time you took a road trip with a family member to bond? You might say, “those girls can afford to do that”or “it’s easy for them to take time off.” However, that’s not true. The Kardashians work as harder or harder than any of us — running fashion lines, keeping sponsors happy, making appearances and being a part of a television show. The difference is they make time to enjoy life.
- Create a personal connection. If you are going to know how your industry is shifting, you need to talk to people who can clue you in, such as customers, bosses and competitors.The Kardashians are always talking to fans on social media. By connecting with their fans on such a personal level they learn and respond.
As Erandi Palihakkara writes on her Huffington Post blog: “Regardless of what their critics say, the Kardashian family has managed to stay relevant and keep their brand highly profitable in a volatile industry for many years. The Kardashian brand may not be around forever, but they sure have learned to capitalize on it while they are still the talk of the town.”
Clearly, when it comes to staying relevant and being successful, we all have a lot to learn from their example.