The Dick Clark Legacy: A Reflection on Business and Life Lessons

Dick Clark ad for American Bandstand.  Photo courtesy of TV Guide and Wikipedia.

The passing of Dick Clark on Wednesday, April 18, 2012, was one the entire nation felt and discussed on television, radio, social media and offline.

As memories from fans were posted, Creative Director of Above Promotions Company, Ebony T. Grimsley, began to reflect on being on the set in 1994 taping Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin Eve in Orlando with her fellow high school friends. “It was a honor to have been a part of history. A moment I will never forget. Dancing and having fun on camera for the legendary Dick Clark is a rare memory that will always be cherished.”

Various moments in history have and will continued to be shared as the entertainment icon made an unforgettable mark on the music and television industry.  From American Bandstand, The $25,000 Pyramid, TV’s Bloopers & Practical Jokes, Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin Eve and the American Music Awards along with a host of made-for-tv movies.

It’s hard pressed to find someone alive today who hasn’t seen one of the Dick Clark Productions.  So what did we learn from his many contributions?  It’s ok to have a good time?  Music can be enjoyed by people from all backgrounds?  New Year’s Eve is a big deal?  Sure at a surface look it can be agreed those things are all true, but for those in the business and out to lead a full life, what did we learn?

  1. Take one product.  Build it.  Perfect it and move on to the next one.  (Dick Clark Productions)
  2. Own your product, not just sell it.  (Dick Clark Licensing)
  3. When facing adversity, don’t give up.  (Dick Clark Survives Payola Scandal)
  4. Listen to Your Gut. (Dick Clark Integrates American Band Stand and Showed Support to Motown.)
  5. Build a Brand By Listening to Your Audience. (Dick Clark’s extensive resume and Acquisition of the brand and production company Dick Clark Productions.)
  6. Recognizing a Winning Combination. (Dick Clark Creates the American Music Awards)
  7. Leave a valuable imprint. (Celebrities speak out.  He created and inspired many careers.)

Whether you’re an entertainment fan or not, his life provides solid business and life lessons.  What you take from them, will be added to your own life’s success.

Dick Clark was right in his quote, “Music is the soundtrack of our life.”  We now salute you and your work Mr. Clark, “For now, Dick Clark … so long.”