You know that saying, "life imitates art"? Don't believe it? Walk into the average business office at 9am on a Monday morning. That's not an episode of The Walking Dead in there; it's just your coworkers.
So before running for the zombie preparedness kit, try running to the nearest Starbucks instead. That being said, just because we're not expecting World War Z any time soon doesn't mean we can't apply practical lessons we have learned from watching our favourite scary movies to our daily lives.
Also, it should be noted that they were never expecting the zombie apocalypse in the zombie movies either. An ounce of preparation is worth a pound of cure!
Without further ado, here are 10 office skills we have learned from watching our favourite scary movies that help us get through the week.
1. Safety in numbers
You know when stuff starts to really get scary in a movie? When someone gets cocky and thinks they're better off on their own. If you're wandering the forest alone escaping an axe-weilding serial killer, who will be there to watch your back? Who will give you a boost over that fence (fence climbing was never really your forté in this scenario)?
Same goes for the office. Share the pain, ask for help. Team members help bring new ideas, fresh perspectives and an extra pair of hands when the going gets tough… or the vampires come calling.
2. Don't wander an empty parking lot alone in the dead of night
If it's midnight and you're still at work… Go home. It's never a good idea to be by yourself in the underground parking lot in the middle of the night. If Jason doesn't get you, the exhaustion will.
3. Don't make someone angry while they're holding a sharp implement
Wait until AFTER your coworker has finished cutting that carrot up with a butcher knife to eat with their sandwich at lunch before sharing the news that your highest earning account has decided to go to a competitor.
4. Never trust the words "trust me"
"Trust me"… famous last words. It's usually after someone in a horror movie says "trust me" that someone loses their head. At the office, when you pass off a task, it's not that your coworker doesn't have the best intentions to complete it, but sometimes a follow up is a good reminder.
5. Always be one step ahead
If you're running from the boogie man, you'll always trip on something and fall down at least once, even if you are very athletic and your vision is 20/20. The boogie man will always catch up to you, even if it only has one leg and no eyes.
It's best to think ahead, be proactive and have a back up plan. Having a solid understanding of a project and its potential road blocks is a great way to get ahead of problems. Carrying a weapon you are trained to use doesn't hurt either…
6. Everything is a fatal accident waiting to happen
If you have ever watched any of the Final Destination movies, then you know what I mean. While it's probably not likely that your computer will explode in your face or a plate glass window will crush you while you are on your lunch break, workplace health and safety is still an important thing to consider.
Keep your workspace as safe as possible, know that you have the legal right to refuse duties that you feel are unsafe and know who on your team is first aid trained… in case your computer does explode in your face.
7. If your colleague suddenly develops an uncharacteristic taste for human blood, watch out!
It can be difficult to ignore relationships and loyalties you have developed with your team members. However, if one of your workplace besties becomes an energy sucker, know when to find some distance. This can be done gracefully. Let them know that you're very busy and need to focus on the task at hand but that you're open to a drink and a vent sesh at your fav watering hole after business hours. Bring your stake and holy water, just to be sure.
8. Know your surroundings
Bad things are always lurking in the only places you didn't look. When developing your project plan or your escape strategy, leave no stone unturned!
9. Go in for the kill
There is a time to run for the hills and there is a time to seize the opportunity. Knowing the distinction between the two could be the difference between the Employee of the Month award or your next big promotion and turning into a hairy man-wolf at the next full moon.
10. … And finally, always finish what you start
Who always survives the horror movie? Not the naked girl, not the funny guy; it's the hero/heroine that sticks it out and collects all the important information, skills and weaponry that will help them develop and enact the strategies that will get them through the catastrophy, zombie apocalypse, serial killer stalking, cut-throat career in business, etc.
Great ideas are fantastic, but if you don't follow those ideas up with action, nothing will ever get accomplished.