Channel the Power of Positivity

By Natalie Dupuis, October 16, 2015

When speaking at Q Los Angeles in 2013, television producer Mark Burnett (the brain trust behind hit shows “The Voice,” “Shark Tank,” “Survivor” and “The Bible”) expressed the importance of creating a product that is appropriate and uplifting. In television, he says, “We’ve proven that family-friendly pays off.” When he first pitched “The Voice,” Burnett says some told him the show would flop without the humiliation factor that other shows in that vein had channeled to find success. “There’s a shift in the nation,” says Burnett. “People don’t want to see [others] belittled. Everybody who is sent home is hugged and encouraged to try again. People said it wasn’t going to work on prime-time TV and they were dead wrong. ‘The Voice’ is crushing it with kindness.”

“There’s a shift in the nation. People don’t want to see [others] belittled. Everybody who is sent home is…encouraged to try again. ‘The Voice’ is crushing it with kindness.” —Mark Burnett

The shift Burnett mentioned has only become more apparent in the last three years as audiences have responded enthusiastically to authentic but happy-go-lucky late-night hosts like Stephen Colbert and Jimmy Fallon. “The Tonight Show” under Fallon’s lead is consistently the No. 1 show in its time slot, and it has a strong online presence thanks to viral videos of fun games and competitions. In comparison to the snark and sarcasm of late-night hosts of days past, today’s hosts are hyperaware their audiences are looking for a good laugh that’s not necessarily at the expense of someone else.

Both Fallon and Colbert have spoken about the influence of their Catholic faith in their lives. Colbert has leaned on his faith after suffering immense loss within his family, and says it’s what allows him to be grateful and joyful each day. That joy translates to his viewers.

Take a cue from these TV gurus and include comedy, authenticity and positivity in your next event. Comedians like Tripp and Tyler, Jim Gaffigan and former Rejuvenate speaker Jeff Foxworthy (all of whom are also making family-friendly, upbeat television these days) are fun presenters guaranteed to give your audience a good belly laugh.

Photo credit: NBCUniversal Media

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