I am totally addicted to HBO’s “In Treatment”. I must have watched 20 episodes in 7 days the other week.
Like “The Office”, the show is an import remake for American audiences. This one comes to us from Israel, which is not surprising since it is about therapy, the Jewish pastime.
It is a drama but riffs off of a sitcom’s 30-minute format and the nightly news’ daily schedule. Each day of the week we watch another patient of Paul–a therapist working out of a Brooklyn brownstone. We get to sit in on their sessions and follow their personal dramas as they unfold each week.
Monday is a lawyer who wants to be a mom but can’t find a man. Tuesday is a student battling cancer. Wednesday is a family in the middle of a divorce. Thursday is a CEO worried about his daughter serving in Africa and a crisis at work. On Friday we get to see Paul with his therapist.
I have done my share of therapy. I have also worked with three executive coaches in my career. They are different experiences but have some interesting similarities. I got to wishing there was a sister show about executive coaching.
Not only would it be very entertaining, but it could help remove the stigma of using an executive coach and provide insight to managers about effective management and leadership. Shows like “Nanny 911″ help parents realize there are worse parents out there than themselves while also allowing them to pick up some helpful tips. The show I am envisioning could be a safe way for people to learn how to be more effective and sane.
In Treatment + The Office + The Apprentice + Nanny 911
If we carbon copy the format for ‘”In Treatment”, here is a potential lineup for season one.
Monday: A mother of a small child works as a middle-manager and faces glass ceiling in her company where management is nearly all male. She wrestles with her frustration at work and guilt around not being home.
Tuesday: Rising star at a consulting firm does a pro bono project and begins to think about a career change and the roles of his values at work. He begins dating his nonprofit client and realizes that things aren’t as black and white.
Wednesday: Entreprenuer facing the ups and downs of a rising start-up. She co-founded it with another person and they struggle to work together. One is motivated to build a great company and the other to build a great product. One is a people person and the other has interpersonal issues.
Thursday: Hospital administrator who struggles with balancing business and the needs of the patients. Her father becomes a patient and makes her question her priorities.
Friday: On Fridays, our executive coach goes to therapy with Paul from “In Treatment” and talks about her own battle feeling on the sidelines and wonder if she should go back to working at a company instead of just coaching.
Of course there would be twists, romances and drama tossed in to keep it fresh.