Star Wars has been a cultural staple for decades now. It just has everything audiences like: action, adventure, romance, and...powerful lessons for your business! So check out these examples and then block off some time later in your work day to rewatch the films - it’ll be business research after all.A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away… OR Branding Power
As soon as you see those 10 words flash onto the screen, you’re immediately transported into the Star Wars universe. And the Star Wars ‘branding’ doesn’t stop there. You could watch the entire movie with your eyes closed and still know that you’re watching a Star Wars film. The pew pew of blasters, the echoing vibrating sounds of a lightsaber, and of course the iconic music all combine to create a soundscape that is wholly and inexorably Star Wars.
As a business, you want your company to be so well branded that people begin to equate any snippet of your brand with your product or service. Build your brand well enough and your branding elements will not only represent your product but ideally also quality. At that people will turn to your offerings over competitors’ just because of your brand even if it is a new product or service that you’ve never offered before.
The 12 Parsec Kessel Run OR The Power of Reputation
Reputation is a powerful force in business (pun, surprisingly, not intended). You build your reputation well enough by providing a good product and/or service, and you're liable to reap the benefits many years to come. And that’s certainly the case for Han Solo and his services as a smuggler. Regardless of the fact that Han obviously doesn’t have a spotless record as a smuggler, he is still well known thanks in large part to his record breaking 12-parsec Kessel Run in the Millennium Falcon. Even more than 30 years later, Rey has heard of Han’s accomplishment. No matter that she thought it was completed in 14 parsecs instead of 12; it was still impressive considering the route was typically 18 parsecs and involved trying to avoid Imperial ships that were on the lookout for smugglers. The point and what you can learn from Han is that if you do something better than your competition, people will remember you for it.
Jedi Training OR The Power of Developing your People
What do Anakin, Luke, and Rey all have in common?
Well perhaps it’ll turn out they have even more in common as the most recent trilogy unfolds, but right now, we know one thing for certain that they all have in common: training. Midi-chlorians, while required, are obviously not enough for one to master the use of the force and become a Jedi Master. Both Luke and Rey grew up not knowing their origins and neither received training in the ways of the force at a young age as Jedi younglings normally would have been. It wasn’t until Luke trained with Yoda that he could use the force, and while Rey can already tap into her abilities now that she knows she has them, clearly she needs further training (assumably by Luke) before she can become a Jedi.
Now think of midi-chlorians in the Star Wars universe as natural talent, intelligence, creativity, etc. Your team may be comprised of truly exceptional people, but even exceptional people benefit from training and development. I mean even Anakin, who had an exceptional high midi-chlorian count had to undergo training.
Stormtroopers OR The Power of Product Design
The origins of the stormtroopers goes back to the clone army that was created by cloning bounty hunter Jango Fett. Basically, they took a strong base (Jango had the reputation as being the best bounty hunter in the galaxy after all) and then they developed it to fit the their needs by accelerating the clones’ growth and implementing behavioral modification. The clone army was the Sith’s secret weapon and instrumental in the rise of the Galactic Empire. Put in terms of your business, you can see how a carefully designed product can be key to your success.
Now learn from the First Order’s mistakes with FN-2187 (aka Finn) and know that you need to regularly evaluate and revise your product or service as needed. It’s easy to become lax over time with a product that seems to be working and miss problems that could eventually lead to your company’s downfall .
And the final lesson you can learn from Star Wars? If you’re ‘hired’ to develop the next planet-destroying weapon, it’s probably a good idea to build in a fatal flaw that can be exploited if ever needed.