Insight on Coaching

Coaching Leadership and Workforces During a Strike

Season 5, Episode 5 - Air Date: March 3rd, 2008

Audio File - Length: 52:50, File Size: 24.1 MB

Today marks nearly four months since the highly publicized union strikes in Hollywood began on November 5th, when the Writers Guild of America and the Alliance of Motion Picture and television Producers couldn’t see eye-to-eye on New Media revenue, placing thousands in Hollywood out of work for several months. This coming June, the Directors Guild of America also has its own contract up for negotiations and talks of another strike looming.

How can professional coaches help leadership and work forces during a strike?

What are the rules that come into play when a strike affects business as usual?

What lessons can other industries take away from the Hollywood strikes?



According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, in 2007 there were 21 lockouts and strikes involving 1,000 or more workers.  The largest major work stoppage in total days idle was between the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers and the Writers Guild of America East and West, with 10,500 workers accounting for 409,500 lost workdays. 

What questions did the Writers Guild strike raise for the entertainment industry?  And what were the leadership lessons learned from the strike?

Most importantly, how were coaches able to help during the Writer’s Guild Strike, and what role can coaching play within other strikes as well?

Our panel of experts answer these questions and more.

Highlights of the show include:

  • An overview of the Writer’s Guild strike from one of its primary leaders, Patric Verrone.
  • Why eventually involving studio presidents and other Hollywood executives in the strike was critical.
  • What made the Writer’s Guild strike different – and why Hollywood is still in gridlock mode.
  • Why Hollywood is behind in the areas of leadership and employee development.
  • How coaches are helping to address some of Hollywood’s dysfunctional areas, including leadership and communication. 
  • How coaches can help clients overcome fear and stay true to themselves during a strike.

This podcast is part of the Insight on Coaching series. For additional information, visit the Insight on Coaching Home Page.