Lessons From Rachel Berry

I love the television show, Glee. Love it. And yes, as a professional actor, turned motivational speaker, it’s easy to see why.  But there’s more to it.  Glee is jam packed with fabulous lessons from which everyone can learn something of value.  Take the last episode for example.

Rachel Berry (played by Lea Michele) blew her audition to get into NYADA, a prestigious acting school in New York.  She choked and forgot the words to her song. The master voice teacher and judge, Carmen Tibideaux (played by Whoopi Goldberg) rejected her immediately and told her there was no chance for her to get into the school. Rachel begged for another chance to start her audition song over.  Again, Carmen declined and walked out of the auditorium.

Rachel was devastated.  Known as the most committed, hardest working, most talented vocal student in the school, she kept calling Carmen, leaving voicemail messages asking for another chance.  She even went to see her in person, asking her to please come to see her sing in her school’s national championship competition in Chicago, since Carmen was going to be there performing around the same time.  Again, Carmen said no.

In one last ditch effort, Rachel said something to the effect of, “Ms. Tibideaux. I will not give up. There is NOTHING in the world that I am more passionate about or that gives me more joy than singing. I will succeed.  And if I am not mistaken, that passion is something we both share. I understand you auditioned 4 times to get into Julliard School of Music.”

Rachel embodied something I call, “The Art of Being Pleasantly Persistent.”  She kept trying. She might have gotten discouraged, but she did not let that stop her from trying.  AND – she was always very pleasant in all her endeavors.  It was as if she was saying, with a respectful smile on her face, “You will ultimately say yes to me – if nothing else just to get me to shut up. So you might as well do it now because I’m not going away.”

Ms. Tibideaux DID show up at Rachel’s competition performance in Chicago.  We won’t find out her decision about accepting Rachel into NYADA until next season, but if I were a betting woman…

The Art of Being Pleasantly Persistent.  It’s a good thing.

From your motivational speaker, Linda Larsen



Motivational Speaker Linda Larsen, CSP has been described by meeting planners and audiences as "hysterically funny," and "riveting." Known for her ability to connect on an authentic and emotional level with audiences, her spontaneous sense of humor, and her engaging and powerful stories, Linda is passionate about sharing ideas to help people live their finest, best, and most productive lives. Her riveting and true story of being kidnapped and held hostage at gunpoint by an escaped convict, and the strategies she used to escape, will give people the tools THEY need to rise above any of life's toughest challenges, to communicate more effectively with THEIR difficult person, and to find creative solutions to THEIR problems. To book motivational speaker, Linda Larsen: 941-927-4700

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  1. Yes, I too watch Glee! And as a motivational sales speaker I’m always encouraging people to be pleasantly persistent rather than be a pest or stalker. Something that Rachel did also made a difference. She did her homework. Knowing Carmen’s history and the ability to speak to how many times she also tried out made a lasting impression. I have a feeling Linda we’ll be seeing Rachel and Whoopi together next season.

  2. Wow – I guess I should be tuning into Glee!  I’ve never seen it – but I love the lesson here.  I remember when I was calling on a client when I was selling financing way back in my early days in business.  The client said no and I went down my list.  I wasn’t very organized and started at the top of the list the next day, the same list!  I thought I was calling this guy for the first time and he reminded me I had already called him.  I was stunned into silence and then he said “I like your persistence!  Come on in and let’s sign the paperwork!” 

  3. Just call me Rachel!  I’m in the midst of pursuing an opportunity so I needed to be reminded of Rachel’s tenacity.  Thanks Linda!

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