What does Jumped the Shark meaning in the corporate world?
1. What does it mean?
• “Jumping the shark” is an idiom used to describe the moment of a misguided attempt at generating new publicity for something once, but no longer, widely popular; the attempt serves instead to highlight the irrelevance of what it intends to promote.
• It is pejorative, most commonly used in reference to unsuccessful gimmicks for promoting something. It is similar to “past its peak”, but it more specifically suggests an unwillingness to acknowledge the fact.
• It’s believed that the phrase jump the shark comes from the TV series Happy Days, in an episode called ‘Hollywood’ that aired on September 1977.
• There’s a scene from this episode where Fonzie, a character from the show, is challenged to jump over a shark that has been confined in the waters near the beach.
• Risking his life, he gets ready to literally jump over the shark, and over he goes! The people watching from the shore then start to cheer.
• Many point to that episode as the watershed for Happy Days, leading to its eventual downfall.
3. What’s jumped the shark in the corporate world?
• Multitasking: It wasn’t too long ago that “ability to multitask” was found on most job postings. Science found that multitasking was killing productivity. It jumped the shark when we started to see people with their cell phone on one ear and their desk phone on the other.
• Gender Sameness: Women have been trained to be like men in order to succeed in business. Remember the “lady ties” of the 1980s? Those days are over. Workplaces are now seeing the benefits of having men and women both play to their strengths.
4. Broader Usage
• The idiom has been used to describe a wide variety of situations, such as the state of advertising in the digital video recorder era and views on rural education policy, the anomalous pursuit of a company acquisition, and the decline of republics into degraded democracy and empire.
• Its usage has subsequently broadened beyond television, indicating the moment when a brand, design, franchise, or creative effort’s evolution declines, or when it changes notably in style into something unwelcome.
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