The Pursuit of Happyness is a 2006 American biographical drama film based on Chris Gardner's nearly one-year struggle with homelessness.
I have been watching this movie for three times, every time I see it, I found that the movie is so touching and could be a good lesson to learn for us being working as a Salesman.
Story of the Movie
In 1981, in San Francisco, the smart salesman and family man Chris Gardner (Will Smith) invested the family savings in Ostelo National bone-density scanners, an apparatus twice more expensive than x-ray with practically the same resolution. The white elephant financially breaks the family, bringing troubles to the relationship with his wife that leaves him and moves to work in a New York restaurant herself. Without money and wife (Thandie Newton) but totally committed with his 5 years old son Christopher (Jaden Smith), Chris sees the chance to fight for a stockbroker internship position at Dean Witter, vying for one career in the end of six months training period without any pay with other twenty candidates. Meanwhile, homeless, he and his son are evicted from their apartment and have to sleep on the Metro rest room and homeless shelters. With confidence and love and trust of his son, Chris rises above the obstacles to become a Wall Street legend.
While watching this movie, my emotion went up and down just as the leading role-Chris’s experience and I’ve really benefited a lot from this movie.
Some Touching Plots
There are several plots in the movie that touch me I can’t help welling up. In the metro station, Chris pretends that they’ve come back to a fancy world through the so-called “time machine” in order to console his son to have a good sleep. However, Chris himself has to endure someone knocking at the locked door angrily and shouting in a loud voice to prevent them from coming in to the rest room where his son is sleeping. In such a formidable difficult situation, strong-minded as he is, Chris simply can’t resist the feeling of loss and despair and sadly shed tears.
Lessons that we had learnt from the movie.
1. You are who you mix with
There are studies which determined that your income is the approximate weighted average of all your friends. Stick with the right people and you will rise with the tide. Stick with the wrong group and you will go under. Will Smith had a big break where he got into the exclusive box stand. There he got to know so many contacts that were much valuable than those that could be found on his cold calling list. The fact that he came with a CEO of a large pension fund also help gained him creditability. The internet age has made it very easy to network. Being a sales, the friends circle could explore more opportunity with you, as friend of your friends could possible looking for your support or your product directly. Try the business networking portal LinkedIn now.
2. Don't do a job that does not directly link reward to results
In the movie, we see Will Smith juggle a stock broking job and a medical equipment sales job together. He worked on the sales on the weekend and broking on weekdays. If the performance of your job has no strong direct link to the payout, think of ways to improve and get another second income stream. Jobs that pay you based on time as just taking away the most valuable resource of your life from you. Time is the only limited resource in the world. You cannot make time and worse still, you have no idea of how much you have left. So invest your time wisely.
3. 1 decision can make your life difficult or very good
Some decisions, like Will's decision to invest in the medical scanner, can make life more difficult than necessary. His decision to jump into stock broking however made his life much better. The point is not to avoid making big decisions in fear of making your life extremely bad, but to make sure that you always have a lifeline. Dumping your savings in something you do not understand is hardly a smart decision.
4. Determination, Motivation and Ambition are the same things
Action is the part separating thinker, dreamers from the successful. Set goals and work for them.
If you are doing sales, apply will's mantra: "X calls=X meetings=X interested prospects= X closing=X money" Ask yourself: what is the X that you are aiming for?
5. No luck at all
It seems to always have bad luck every day in the movie. But luck is statistically proven to be non existent. Flip a coin many times and you get even results. Work on your cold calling and you will get that X numbers of meetings. As long as in the short term you survive, there is nothing to blame on luck.
6. Money= Happiness?
With an income more than 20K, your happiness level does not increase with further increases in income. In this study, it is shown that everyone needs a decent standard of living. But once you attain that, happiness is less definable because it varies from everyone. Varied experiences and being in control of your life generally bring experiences. See Maslow hierarchy of needs if you need to know basic stuff have to be fulfilled first. Happiness means being in control of my life, having financial security and doing hard and meaningful work. Happiness is relative, they say a happy man is one whom earns $100 more than his wife's sister's husband. Less comparison of status with other people make you content.
After all, What about myself!?
The strong will and determination can change a person's life.
Will Smith wears a Casio Data Bank Watch.HK Snob