7 Business Lessons Learned from the Hunger Games: Part 3

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7 Business Lessons Learned from the Hunger Games: Part 3



Money is abundant, talent is scarce.

Having great public relations and sponsors mean nothing in the Hunger Games or in Business if there is no sufficient talent to back up the support. Every tribute in the games has one or two special talents that are unique and give an unfair advantage over the other tributes.

Some tributes are physically large, muscular and favor close combat where they can overpower and crush their opponents. Other tributes are small, nimble and would rather climb trees and set traps. Every person both in the Hunger Games and in business has special unique talents they can become the best at.

It makes no sense to ask a fish to climb a tree just as it makes no sense for a bird to swim under water. The bird is best at flying and the fish is best at swimming.

Haymitch the mentor in the hunger games tells his female student, Katniss who is skilled at archery to run into the forest, find water and avoid the melee bloodbath at the start of the games that is reserved for large, brutish male warriors. She hides in trees and uses cunning and skill to fight and survive.

Other tributes in the hunger games are physically imposing brutes who are naturally born for melee combat with swords, daggers and fists and they are the ones with the talent to dominate the bloodbath in the middle of the arena.

In business, we must quickly assess what our talents are, and find our strengths and weaknesses. For myself, I am a natural born salesman and this is a strength and talent of mine. In contrast, I am poor manager and I do not do well with paperwork or tedious management. To be effective in the market, I must rely on my talents and delegate my weaknesses to my team members.



“All right, I’ll make a deal with you. You don’t interfere with my drinking, and I’ll stay sober enough to help you… but you have to do exactly what I say” – Haymitch Abernathy

Every single tribute who enters the games, no matter how privileged or under privileged gains access to a mentor who once survived the hunger games and was the winner. It makes sense to have a mentor who has survived such a brutal experience first hand to bestow wisdom upon the new tributes and give the ability to reach his or her full potential prior to the games.

Unfortunately, in business, not every businesses person, entrepreneur or investor enters the market with a mentor. What is even more unfortunate is most average entrepreneurs never really find a sufficient mentor to guide them towards success.

Surviving ten years of entrepreneurship is not an easy task and nearly 99% of entrepreneurs fail within the first ten years. Having the right mentor behind you to guide you through the successes and the failures will often make all of the difference between being the 1% who succeed and the 99% who fail.



The longest surviving tributes in the Hunger Games were the ones with the best survival skills, who formed alliances, who had good public relations, talent and sponsors all had one final thing in common. For the finalists, winning the games was about much more than survival.

The career tributes trained for years and volunteered to enter the Hunger Games for an Olympic like glory. Their pursuit was athletic in nature and they entered to achieve.

Katniss the female protagonist volunteered for the games to protect her younger sister Prim who was selected to fight in the games and was clearly unsuitable to fight.

The 15 unnamed tributes fought for mere survival and often survival alone is not enough to become a champion.

In business, the mission and the purpose behind the business is often more important than the business itself. Entrepreneurs, who are in business for money and money alone, often do not become successful because when they hit hard times and there is little or no money, these people quit.

The most successful entrepreneurs in the world do businesses to serve something greater than themselves. Often entrepreneurs are in business to look after their children or to look after their parents. This is the initial spark of purpose for the business and as the business grows, so does the mission and the emotion behind it.

Money is spiritual in nature and when we serve something greater than ourselves we attract more money to our cause. In the hunger games, the tributes who fought the hardest were the ones who were fighting for something larger than their own survival. Success is always amplified when we are successful for the right reasons.


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10007528_10153951499500596_499871011_nStefan Aarnio, award winning real estate investor, entrepreneur, author and coach was recently inducted into the Rich Dad Hall of Fame. His book, “Money People Deal: The Fastest Way to Real Estate Wealth” is currently available on moneypeopledeal.com.  To learn more about Stefan Aarnio please visit StefanAarnio.com