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Lessons in Business Leadership you can learn from Game of Thrones

Game of Thrones is essentially a story of power-hungry individuals who criss-cross paths with the noble and the fair ones. The story features a lot of fantasy and magic, however, the crux of the story revolves around becoming the undisputed ruler of the seven kingdoms set across Westeros and Essos (fictional continent of the series).

It taps into one of the basic human instincts or desires - to be successful and command a position of power, authority and reverence.

At every stage, the story has unexpected elements. It portrays the victory of cunning and dark characters over popular characters like Ned Stark, who despite being upright and noble is killed. Another notable character that is inspirational is Jon Snow who goes from being a nobody to a trusted leader who handles every crisis, despite the odds.

The common thread between the characters is their decision-making abilities and how they lead themselves and others in pursuit of their respective objectives.

Entrepreneurs can take inspiration from these characters as they offer some pertinent lessons on leadership and decision making.

Be adaptable with your values- Ned Stark, one of the chief characters, behaves instinctively even though his peers and subordinates do not share the same passion for his ideas. It is always expected of a leader to be just, accountable, and honest. However, he/she should have adapt and improvise his approach according to the opportunities and threats.

When faced with a new business environment or challenge, a leader should understand what is at stake, evaluate the best way to tackle the problem and actively get a buy-in from his team before implementing. Collaboration is always better than competing with each other.

Art of convincing can go a long way- In the fifth season of Game of Thrones, Jon Snow (and Tourmound Giantsband) successfully mediates between two opposing forces. For those living on the other side of the wall called “wildlings” as well as the members of the Night’s watch who consider each other their bitter enemies, mutual co-existence was unfathomable.

However, Jon persuaded them to set aside their apprehensions for the common good. The ability to resolve a feud by persuasion and perseverance is an essential skill for the smooth running of a business.

Information and trust building is crucial- Tyrion reveals sensitive information about the Lannister family and Westeros to Daenerys who initially sees him as an enemy spy. However, Tyrion succeeds in convincing Daenaerys Targaraeyn to accept her as an advisor and team mate.

In business, a good leader will not only be able to handle a potential crisis but can also turn the tide in his/her own favour and reap benefits from the same.

Take expert advice- Tyrion Lannister in one of the episodes says “A wise king knows what he knows and what he doesn’t...A wise young king listens to his counsellors and heeds their advice until he comes of age. And the wisest kings continue to listen to them long afterwards”.

For the growth of your business, it is crucial to take expert advice, be it in the nascent stage of the business or at a matured stage. To move ahead, a business house must know what it doesn’t have and seek expert advice.