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In the opening scene of the hit and heartfelt TV series, Schitt’s Creek, we see federal agents ransacking an opulent mansion, flinging jewels, ballgowns, and other trappings of extravagant wealth into bags while the now-destitute Rose family—Johnny, Moira, David, and Alexis—have dramatic breakdowns of proportions reserved for high net-worth individuals.
Thanks to a forgotten real estate investment (Johnny bought a town for David’s birthday as a gag gift), the shellshocked—but well-dressed—Roses make their way to the podunk town of Schitt’s Creek, move into two adjoining hotel rooms, and start making their way in the world of the working class. As with any family trying to make it work, there are laughs, tears, hysterics, and hiccups along the way.
We see the Rose family evolve from thoughtless millionaires into a hard-working family unit that leans on each other when times are tough, supports each other through success and failure, and ultimately finds their way to financial fulfillment and shared familial joy. Over the show’s six seasons, each member of the family forges their own unique path to financial and personal success.
Where are you on your own path? Whether you’re starting a new business, looking to find renewed success in your career, or are focused on creating your ideal work/life balance, the cast of Schitt's Creek has lessons to help you get there.
Johnny Rose on the Importance of Staying Calm, Cool, and Collected
Patriarch Johnny Rose built his family’s fortunes off the success of his first business, Rose Video, followed by some savvy investing. Unfortunately, his business manager was convicted of fraud by the IRS, and almost all of the family’s assets were used to pay the back taxes. This major fumble may have sunk most ships, but Johnny Rose steers steadily into new waters by investing his time and applying expertise and elbow grease to growing a new business, the Rosebud Motel.
As they grow the business into a franchise, Stevie Budd, his charmingly sarcastic business partner, reminds Johnny of his own advice from his book on growing a successful business: "You miss 100% of the tapes you don't play."
This prompts Johnny and his team to reach out to investors, pitch their idea, and ultimately secure the capital needed to acquire over 250 roadside motels to franchise under the Rosebud Motel Group.
Through it all, Johnny Rose never loses his cool, calm, collected demeanor. Though he faces setbacks, he makes constant, methodical progress by putting one foot in front of the other, leaning into challenges, and trusting his instincts.
We all face setbacks in our career and financial goals. Whether it’s learning to adjust to pandemic-related work and childcare challenges, finding a new job amid historic shifts in the labor market, or running into an unexpected medical bill that throws off your savings goals, it’s easy to get discouraged when we’re thrown off track.
When you’re feeling overwhelmed with challenges, take a note from Johnny Rose by keeping a cool head, accepting helpful advice from others, and trusting in yourself.
Alexis Rose on Following Your Own Compass
Alexis Rose’s journey from vapid socialite to on-point publicist is one of my favorite character arcs in the show. In the first season, Alexis, the spoiled 27-year-old baby of the Rose family, prances around Schitt’s Creek in fun, flirty dresses desperately seeking distraction.
By Season 4, Alexis has formed her own publicist company and is tentatively exploring her first career. On the same day she receives her first business cards, she “randomly” runs into a friend from her past, Klair.
Klair is the spitting image of what we imagine Alexis’ former self to be. She’s rude, thoughtless, and utterly self-centered. She also offers Alexis a quick ticket out of Schitt’s Creek to work for a marketing agency. After seeing Klair and doing some soul-searching, Alexis realizes she’s grown from the person she used to be and turns down the job to make her way on her own terms.
Along her journey, Alexis finds true love and a healthy relationship for what we imagine to be the first time in her life with Ted, a punny veterinarian. Ted is offered the opportunity to follow his own career goals to the Galapagos islands, and though they try to make the long-distance relationship work, the couple ultimately decides over a tear-stained dinner at Café Tropical to end the relationship in order to support each other’s dreams.
As the series concludes, Alexis is poised to forge a new path to success—on her own—in New York.
One lesson we can all learn from Alexis is to make room for growth. We are constantly shedding previous versions of ourselves to make room for new goals, step onto different paths, and build the life that best suits our current vision for ourselves.
What financial lessons do Moira and David Rose have in store for us? Subscribe to the blog to find out!
A graduate of the Plan II Honors program at UT Austin, Amanda Harr is the Content Manager for SWBC. A clever wordsmith who appreciates artful persuasion and authenticity in writing, Amanda uses a structured creative process to craft marketing strategies, develop communications solutions, and deliver top-notch content.