What I learned from Tony Stark

Jarvis… sometimes you gotta run before you can walk.“- Tony Stark

I am, at heart, a dreamer. My mind is always racing with new ideas and opportunities. I love to push the boundaries. However, I’m also someone who had to change who he was to survive in this new PR 2.0 world.

The other night, I watched “Iron Man,” the wildly successful 2008 movie based on the comic book character. Tony Stark is not only the man under the armor, he’s also a brilliant engineer. If you don’t know the story, I’ll recap: Stark suffers a severe chest injury during a kidnapping in which his captors attempt to force him to build a weapon of mass destruction. He instead creates a powered suit of armor to save his life and escape captivity. He later uses the suit to protect the world as Iron Man (got that?).

Now, my life is nowhere close to Tony Stark’s. Yes, I know what you’re saying, “Iron Man and Stark aren’t real.” You are right, they aren’t. However, in the number of times I’ve watched the movie, I’ve come away with a few thoughts that have helped me in my business and how I can deal with clients.

1. Dress for success- This is something I will believe until the day I die. I recently discussed this point in a post at Ragan.com. How you look goes a very long way to making a good first impression. I also think it helps your confidence when you rock a great suit.

2. Evolve constantly- Stark realized when he returned from captivity that he needed to change the direction of his company. As business people and public relations/marketing pros, we need to constantly be on our toes. By staying on the cutting edge and listening to what is being said, either online or in trades, we are able to stay relevant. It also helps to understand what your clients may want as well.

3. Your “armor” won’t always protect you- Iron Man is pretty strong, but without that armor, he’s only human. The same goes for public relations. We may have a strong crisis plan or even a solid campaign rollout plan, but   you can only plan for so much. When your “armor” fails, you’ll need to be as prepared as possible for what may come at you.

4. Always have someone you can trust with your ideas- For Stark, it was his assistant Pepper Potts. I have one person that I bounce ideas off of, just to get a perspective. Don’t have someone you can trust? What about  a family member. You may think they don’t understand, but you may be surprised. Trust your gut, but it won’t hurt to get your idea or plan backed up.

5. Embrace the past, grasp the future- As much as we think we can leave the past behind, we can’t. Sure, we move on, but past events have helped shape us and make us who we are. While you may want to forget about a mistake that you made in PR, don’t! It will make your future much better and stronger.

Remember… we all have a power inside of us to be great. It’s a matter of believing in yourself and knowing that you can do it. Others can tell you what you want to hear, but do you truly believe that you have the power? BELIEVE IT!


Posted on March 8, 2012, in Inspiration, Marketing, Personal Branding, Public Relations, Social Media, Technology and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. Well said. I also like the part in where Stark’s military pal is willing to give up everything to find him. You can find good points in most comics. Nice job Jaymo..

  1. Pingback: What the Avengers can teach you about PR « One Guy's Journey

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