With its exploration of themes such as loyalty, conscience, and conflict resolution, Game of Thrones has a surprising amount of wisdom that can be easily applied to the world of small business ownership. Let the Seven Kingdoms guide you as you battle the obstacles of entrepreneurship.
- Pay Debts on Time
As any avid Game of Thrones fan knows, “a Lannister always pays his debts,” a saying that refers to the richest family’s mantra. In business, repaying your loans on time and in full should always be a number one priority. Having debt can be like a ball and chain that gets in the way of having flexibility when making business decisions.
- Let Competition Destroy Itself
As the Prince Tyrion Lannister always says, your enemies hate each other like they hate you. Instead of getting embroiled in marketing campaigns that target the competition, focus your efforts on attracting customers, improving your products, and expanding the business. Let the other competitors in the industry destroy each other or themselves – but don’t get involved in the drama.
- Be Kind
Yes, Game of Thrones might be known for its graphic and violent scenes, but sprinkled throughout are moments of kindness and altruism. Being kind and generous to your customers will pay off dividends in both the short term and long term. When given the choice between being kind and being mean, always choose the high road. People will remember it down the line.
- Be Careful Whom You Trust
Eddard Stark is one of the show’s most upstanding characters, and unfortunately, his kind heart causes him to place his trust in the wrong people. The character dies because of it. In the real world of small business ownership, know the difference between friends and enemies, and be aware of people’s agendas.
- Build Influence Gradually
The spymaster Varys once said that he used to be a beggar, but eventually rose to prominence thanks to his own cunning and wit. This can be directly applied to your small business because entrepreneurs must build their following one customer at a time. Each new connection you make can contribute something to your business’s network.
- Treat Employees as Allies
The Khaleesi earns the loyalty of the slave warriors known as the Unsullied because she gives them freedom instead of forcing them into servitude. Thus, they choose to be loyal to her. When managing your employees, treat them like allies, not as slaves. They joined your business to contribute their ideas and creativity to the growth of this enterprise, not to simply do what they’re told.