Funny Business – Dexter’s Laboratory

Patrick Murphy
By Patrick Murphy | I have been with Sutherland since September 2013. Prior to that I worked in Agency Recruiting. I was born in England, and moved to the US in 1998. I attended SUNY Brockport and graduated with a bachelors in Business. Two qualities I prefer in leaders (and that I try to emulate myself) are candor and a clear sense of direction.

Business Lessons

Funny Business is back and this time we’re moving into the nineties with Cartoon Network’s classic Dexter’s Laboratory.

This time around, we’ll be joining Dexter, his well-intentioned but meddling sister Dee-Dee!

Four essential messages any business professional can learn from Dexter’s Laboratory:

Education is King

Dexter was a nerd before being a nerd was cool. He had a passion to experiment and explore. But just like in real life, nothing comes for free. Dexter needs to be able to understand the science before he can complete his insane experiments.

For business professionals, the same is true. Whether you’re an entrepreneur or working your way up the corporate ladder, you always need to be learning. Certifications and training can help you get that next promotion. Entrepreneurs and leaders need to uncover and understand data trends to steer their business in the right direction. Education allows us to work smarter instead of harder; to reach better decisions faster, and execute them successfully.

Let the children play

Throughout the series, Dexter and Dee’s parents seemingly allow them to do what they like. Aside from the occasional mandated piano lesson, Dexter’s parents mostly seem oblivious to his science exploits.

Incompetent parenting? Probably. But you can’t argue with the results. Sometimes you have to let the kids fall down and get themselves up. The same thing applies to projects and other business ventures. They need time to develop into winners. Knowing when to close a failing project and when to allow a future success to grow is key.

Sometimes you need the whole family to defeat the monster

During the season 2 finale, “Last but Not Beast”, Dexter accidentally releases a giant monster on Japan. In order to stop it, he needs the help of all his family and friends. Once he reveals his lab, the entire group is able to work together to stop the monster from destroying Japan.

The lesson? There is no such thing as a superman. Everyone needs help at some point and often times pride and other negative emotions stop us from asking for it when needed. Humility is an often overlooked and underappreciated quality in people, and the ability to stop and release you need help is a powerful one.

And if they help you save the day, you can always take a page from Monkey’s playbook and erase everyone’s memories.

All work and no play makes Dexter a dull boy

In the Episode “Dumb like Dee Dee,” Dexter cracks due to over working and starts to become dumber and dumber. Dee Dee and the neighborhood kid’s end up mocking him for his strange behavior, which includes running through the streets in his underpants and kissing a ducks behind…Yes, you read that right…

The lesson: sometimes you just need a break. There is no point working if you don’t get to enjoy the things you’re working for. Got some PTO built up? Take a holiday – enjoy yourself and unwind.


Bonus lesson: Be nice to your Sister

She’ll always be there to help you out in the end.

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