As if that weren’t festive enough, this week is also Small Business Week. So what do you think Yoda and Obi-Wan Kenobi might teach us about being entrepreneurs?
Believe in yourself – Luke didn’t truly come into his Jedi powers until Yoda convinced him to believe in himself.
Choose a mentor – Every aspiring Jedi Knight needs a Jedi Master to show them the right path.
Ask your peers for constructive criticism – Legend has it that the original script for Star Wars was a mess – painfully bad, clichéd, and boring. Lucas wisely sought advice from his friends, fellow directors Steven Spielberg, Brian de Palma, and Francis Ford Coppola, with great results. Contrast that with the later Star Wars “prequels,” where Lucas surrounded himself with yes men, resulting in the worst films of the Star Wars series.
As Yoda says, “Size matters not” – Smaller may be better if you want a business that’s agile and flexible and fits the “Life First, Work Second” model.
Learn from the best – Lucas borrowed heavily from Akira Kurosawa’s samurai epics, Flash Gordon serials of the 1930s, the sci-fi novels of Edgar Rice Burroughs, and the cinematography of classic Westerns.
Failure is inevitable – It’s part of the entrepreneurial experience; we need to accept it and learn from it. Unfortunately, every time one of Vader’s minions made a mistake he fired them… by choking them to death with the Force. No wonder they were afraid to give him honest feedback! Not to mention all the time Vader wasted trying to bully his son into joining the family business.
Learn from your mistakes – Darth Vader and Emperor Palpatine had only one business plan – the Death Star. Then the rebels blew it up. So did they look at other alternatives? No! They just built another one, and they were properly screwed when it got blown up a second time before it was even finished.
Grow your business with new income streams – When Disney acquired LucasFilm in 2012, they announced plans for three new films to complete the series as well as three new standalone spinoff films about established fan-favorite characters like Han Solo, Yoda, and Boba Fett. Definitely a smart business move to reinvigorate the franchise and create new profit centers for fans.
Stay away from the Dark Side – Integrity is super important for a small business. Don’t be tempted to shortchange your clients for quick profits.
And above all…
There’s more to life than money and power – Vader and Palpatine were at the top of the Empire food chain, but do you think they were happy? Hell no! Just look at them.
If you missed celebrating yesterday, don’t worry. For those of us who are hard-core Star Wars fans, today is Star Wars Sequel Day… Revenge of the 5th !