What Betty White Can Teach Us About Career Longevity

What Betty White Can Teach Us About Career Longevity

Betty White’s latest gig hosting SNL may be what everyone was talking about around the water cooler on Monday morning, but it’s merely the latest triumph in a 70-year career that has included such iconic characters as Sue Ann Nivens and Rose Nylund.

Not only has White made an inestimable contribution to popular culture, but her longevity is an inspiration to performers everywhere…and can also provide valuable lessons for a long and happy career no matter which path you’ve chosen.

1. Cause And Fulfill.

Find a cause that's important to you and make a career out of fulfilling that passion. According to Perez Hilton (via Entertainment Weekly), White has said, “I'm the luckiest old broad on two feet because my life is divided absolutely in half - half animals and half show business. You can't ask for better than two things you love the most."

2. Embrace The New.

Don’t be afraid to try new things. Whether it’s hosting SNL, playing beer pong with Jimmy Kimmel, or getting tackled in a Super Bowl ad for Snickers, White doesn’t shy away from new challenges…even though she admitted she was “scared to death” of the SNL hosting gig.

3. Social Media Can Be Your Friend.

Even though White joked in her opening monologue that Facebook sounds like a huge waste of time, it got her on the show. And with a new campaign to get her to host the Oscars, who knows what it’ll do for her next…and what it can do for your own career.

4. Be Nice.

Perez Hilton quoted a source that said White brought cheesecake for the SNL cast and crew while they were rehearsing. The source called it “old school,” but it’s really just plain nice. She proves the adage is true: You catch more flies with honey.

5. Be Willing To Have Fun.

Think of the Golden Girls: They all had jobs – Dorothy was a substitute teacher, Blanche worked at an art gallery, Rose was a consumer affairs reporter, and even Sophia worked at Captain Jack’s Seafood Shanty for a brief, shining moment – but they all knew how to cut a rug every once in awhile, too.

6. Work With What You've Got.

White’s SNL jokes revolved around a particular theme that, among other things, showed she has a firm sense of self and doesn’t try to be anything else than the wonderful Betty White.

7. Slow And Steady Wins The Race.

As long as you love what you do, it doesn’t matter when you cross the proverbial finish line. At 88 and a half, White is still gunning for it. May we all be so lucky.


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