How The Fast and Furious Franchise Resembles Our Careers


Opening weekend for F9: The Fast Saga!

The Fast and Furious Franchise is my favorite movie franchise – ever. I am a fan, fan. I absolutely love it. I still watch the movies on TV with commercials and On Demand even though I have movies 1-7 on DVD. I’m not really a movie buff. I’m also not normally the action movie type. I took my daughter and nephew to the theater to see part four and absolutely loved it. I went home and rented 1-3 and could not wait for Fast 5 to hit the theaters. F9 is quite possibly the only movie I see in the theater this year. (The previews I saw sucked.) It is definitely the only movie that would get me to the theater this close to the end of the coronavirus pandemic.

Here is the movie sequence and year of release:

1. The Fast and the Furious (2001) – I probably would not have seen any more of the series if I had seen the first movie first

2. 2 Fast 2 Furious (2003) – Tyrese entered the franchise, but the movie was boring without Vin Diesel and the “family”

3. The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift (2006) – Juvenile and pointless. The only movie that I’ve only seen once.

4. Fast & Furious (2009) – My introduction. The plot and action kept me interested.

5. Fast Five (2011) – My absolute favorite. The ‘family’ formed and Dwayne ‘The rock” Johnson entered the franchise. The franchise moved from street racing to action hero spies and superheroes.

6. Fast & Furious 6 (2013) – The ‘family’ reassembles to help the federal agent who previously pursued them. Letty returns and Ramsey enters the picture.

7. Furious 7 (2015) – We’re in the James Bond realm.  We lost Paul Walker and the franchise hasn’t been the same.

8. The Fate of the Furious (2017) – I didn’t have high expectations after the death of Paul Walker, but the plot was terrible and the special effect were even worse. Even though this 8th movie was bad, I anxiously awaited the 9th movie. I knew when I left that theater that if 15 movies were created I would see them all LOL.

9. F9: The Fast Saga (2021) – Coronavirus pushed the release back one year. Although the plot was absolutely outrageous, they redeemed themselves by adding humor and casually addressing all the things we were thinking to ourselves. We were introduced to Dom and Mia’s estranged brother, Hahn is alive thanks to Mr. Nobody, and the characters from Tokyo drift rejoined the franchise.

10. I will definitely stay tuned for the 10th movie which I believe will be the last.  

How The Franchise Resembles Our Careers:

  1. How many times have we been on a job or in a career and before we knew it years and years had passed? – We are a whole 20 years in people – 2001 to 2021!
  2. How often have we stayed in bad jobs with the hope that things would improve? – Nine movies. The movie started out good and there were some in the franchise that were great, but somewhere along the way things went downhill. We stuck around to see the rebound.
  3. How often do our roles shift and change before our responsibilities are concrete and we ‘own’ our positions? – We saw disconnected characters morph into an ‘indestructible’ family where each member had a specific purpose in movies 5 and 6.
  4. How often does the loss of a colleague result in other team members struggling to maintain productivity and work quality? – After the death of Paul Walker, the franchise struggled in every way imaginable.
  5. How many ways have both employers and employees had to adapt and reinvent themselves due to COVID-19? – There is an open seat at the Toretto family table but we will have to wait for the next movie to see who fills it and how.
  6. How many times have we stayed in positions that no longer serve us to meet a certain milestone, complete a project, or await a situational change?  – I hope the tenth movie is the final movie so we can all move on.

Did you see the movie this weekend? What are your thoughts?

Nicki Sanders, MSW, CEO, is a Career and Empowerment Strategist who helps high-performing women of color in management go from overworked, underpaid, and unappreciated to energized, well paid, and appreciated. Through Nicki Sanders Leadership Consulting, she also helps businesses recruit, hire, train, and retain great employees. Nicki has an extensive background in developing and managing successful programs and leading high-functioning multi-disciplinary teams. She is an accomplished professor, coach, trainer, and group facilitator who has combined her gift for authentic relationships, Master of Social Work degree, and over 20 years of diverse work experience to create a life she loves. Nicki is a lover of cupcakes, travel, and 80’s hip hop and R&B music.

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