There’s no denying that Game of Thrones has taken the world by storm. The show has become a global phenomenon, with millions of people tuning in each week to see what happens next.
While Game of Thrones may be fiction, plenty of business lessons can be learned from the show. Here are ten business lessons that you can take away from Game of Thrones.
1. Always keep your word.
To be trusted by colleagues, clients, and investors, you must keep promises, strengthening your credibility. And more robust than the cases when you did more but later than the promised time
The restrained and unrestrained words are frequent themes in Game of Thrones. Perhaps the most famous example is the episode “The Reina of Castamere” from the third season, better known as “The Red Wedding.” It is one of the most violent episodes of the series, and deaths could have been avoided if Robb Stark had kept his word and married the daughter of Walder Frey.
2. Recognize your strengths and weaknesses
Influential leaders surround themselves with knowledgeable people because they realize they don’t understand everything independently. At the same time, they know and use their strengths to have a profitable business.
In the fourth season, Tywin Lannister mentors Tommen and says, “A wise king knows what he knows and doesn’t know.” Cersei never learned this lesson: in the same season, she cuts the Small Council more and more, not wanting to listen to others. And in the end, it does not lead to anything good.
But Sam is not afraid to admit his weaknesses. He understands that his job is not to fight but to use his brain. Therefore, he lives to the end and succeeds.
3. Understand where your values can take you
We rely on our values in emergencies when there is no time to weigh decisions and evaluate options. You wander in open-data sources to find competitors’ failures or the most valuable information you need. Therefore, you must clearly understand what consequences yours may have.
“A leader must understand what obstacles and opportunities his values can create for him,” says Professor Bruce Craven of Columbia University Business School. Otherwise, the consequences can be tragic, which we have seen in the history of Ned Stark. He does not see how duty and honor, which he values above all, make him vulnerable to the machinations of others.
4. Keep your emotions under control.
Showing you are human helps strengthen relationships with other team members. But sometimes you don’t need to let your emotions get out of hand: shouting and threatening, you don’t motivate your subordinates. Joffrey and Daenerys are two examples of leaders who got rid of them because they couldn’t handle their emotions.
5. Don’t let failure stop you.
It’s an unpleasant but inevitable part of life. They help us to grow and learn new things if we have learned the lesson and do not repeat the mistake. Thanks to them, we become stronger and more resilient.
Many Games of Thrones characters have been in difficult circumstances:
- Cersei and Daenerys were humiliated and lost loved ones.
- Bran has lost the ability to walk.
- Sansa survived psychological and physical torture.
But they did not let these circumstances break them. The heroes tried even more complex things and found ways to turn adversity to their advantage.
6. Take responsibility for your decisions.
Leadership is not for the faint of heart and often requires tough decisions. Remember the words of Ned Stark before the execution of a deserter: “He who passes judgment carries the sword himself.”
Do not deny responsibility for your decisions, even if they are not popular. Admit if you’re wrong. It is an effective way to prove your honesty and confidence.
7. Build trust
Use milestones in your project to be more responsible and structure your work. This is one way to build trust. Another way to do this is to demonstrate a willingness to share personal information.
For example, Tyrion wins the trust of Daenerys, potentially dangerous to him, by talking about little-known facts from his life and pointing out the presence of a common enemy.
He also bypasses the double trap of the weak side. It is a situation where a person in a vulnerable position is ignored if he does not speak out and criticized if he speaks out too boldly. Psychologist Adam Galinsky advises in such cases to show your willingness to be flexible. Give the other person a choice. Tyrion said that Daenerys could kill him or take him into her council.
8. Know how to convince
Convincing your customer is your priority and plays a significant role in your business plan.Hire a best business plan consultant for your business.
To convince someone, try to push people into “acceptance breadth”—a state where they are ready to consider different options and embrace change. At this stage, conducting complex negotiations or providing facts is unnecessary, and it is enough to convince a person to accept the possibility of a different state of affairs.
9. Be flexible
In Game of Thrones, only characters can survive. Someone learns to fight blindly, and someone learns to move into the minds of animals. Flexibility is also needed in the workplace, mainly when changes occur. So, be flexible and organize the events and tasks to coordinate every step.
“I often see how in organizations whose core business model is changing, leaders simply deny it and do not want to see anything,” says Rita McGrath, a strategist in an unstable environment. According to her, the company must constantly adapt and rebuild, evaluating its results. Including you need to ask yourself if you are open to other points of view.
10. Unite in the face of a common enemy
When people with different motives and different characters gather, conflicts arise. A good leader is a unifying force that reminds everyone of a common goal. Remember how Jon convinced the representatives of other Houses (except Cersei, of course) to put aside their differences for a while and rally to fight the White Walkers?
“In the face of a common threat, former rivals become allies and change tactics to do something together,” says Galinsky. “This applies both in the diplomatic and directors’ offices.”