In March 2009, at the height of the financial crisis, CNBC’s “Mad Money” host Jim Cramer accepted Jon Stewart’s invitation to appear on “The Daily Show” after a week of publicly feuding with the comedian.
Stewart argued over multiple episodes of his show that CNBC’s reporters and analysts, including Cramer, recklessly misinformed viewers leading up to the crisis, making investing recommendations based on corporate press releases rather than careful research.
When Cramer appeared on “The Daily Show,” the typically animated television personality adopted a meek and cautious tone as Stewart ripped into him. Stewart told Howard Stern in a 2014 interview that he regretted venting all of his frustrations with CNBC into a personalised and public attack. And it was one that deeply affected Cramer, who told The New York Times Magazine in 2011 that it weighed on his conscience for months afterward.
“Did I get a beatdown? Of course I got a beatdown!” Cramer told Business Insider CEO Henry Blodget at last week’s IGNITION conference. The main issue Cramer had, though, was that his children saw the exchange, and his daughter began defending his character on her Facebook page.
When something like that happens, Cramer told Blodget, “then you know it’s personal. It’s not business.”
Cramer said he learned something from that experience, which can help anyone who suffers a personal attack or embarrassing failure in their career: “If you let them get to you, then you just fail. And the key is to not fail — it’s to show up. That’s the revenge.”
He said that following his humiliating “Daily Show” appearance, he woke up the next morning at the usual time, 3:45 a.m., worked out hard with his personal trainer, banged out two articles for his financial news site TheStreet, and prepared to shoot another episode of “Mad Money.”
“It’s the only way to win against the people who try to take you down. … You do your damn job!” Cramer said. “And you do the homework, and you show up!”
The only way to get through a slump or a particularly nasty humiliation, he said, is to let the barrage of attacks fall off you and continue with your routine.
“A guy will write some negative article about me,” said Cramer, and because he enjoys gardening tomatoes in his spare time, his wife will say: “OK, you’ve got two hours. Get in that garden, pick the damn tomatoes, and we’re canning!”
Business Insider Emails & Alerts
Site highlights each day to your inbox.