5 things every entrepreneur can learn from Chak De India

Loosely based on the life of Mir Ranjan Negi, Chak De India is a mainstream Bollywood movie starring Shah Rukh Khan which released in 2007. It promoted team work, management skills, and patriotism and leadership skills. The movie was about a girls’ hockey team who beat all odds to win the world cup. This movie can serve as an inspiration to all budding entrepreneurs as well.

Here are 5 lessons one can learn from the movie:

1. Building a team

Initially the group was a bunch of sixteen girls who had come with their own agenda. However, the coach, Kabir Khan, realised that they wouldn’t succeed with this attitude and so, he went on help them build a close-knit team. They were not happy with his methods of training and soon made him their enemy but this move was also strategized by him as the common enemy brought them closer.

Similarly, with a team of professionals, an entrepreneur needs to be able to bind them in a way that they are focused towards the ultimate goal only. Just like the movie, internal disputes can be a reason for your venture to fail.

2. Leadership aspects

Leadership is one of the main aspects of management and only an able leader is able to drive his team towards success. The leader cannot always afford to be the nice guy in every scenario and go on pleasing everyone. In the movie, the coach was often stern with the girls if they made a mistake or broke a rule. This ensured that they wouldn’t repeat their folly. However, he was also understanding when it was required; he told Vidya that she could go back home for a couple of days as she was under familial pressure.

Similarly, a leader in a professional scenario needs to be aware of the times when he needs to be strict with his employees.

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3. Strategy is the key to succeeding

The coach was aware of the fact that the hockey team couldn’t win all the matches with a single strategy. To defeat South Korea, which was an aggressive team, he devised a plan where the strongest player would fight to keep the route clear for the forwards and he let the most experienced player, Bindiya play in a very difficult match only because she was his trump card.

An entrepreneur needs to learn that all situations aren’t the same and tweak his strategy according to the situation.

4. Taking risks

Kabir Khan never deterred from taking risks even though at times what he wanted to achieve seemed impossible. When the girls’ team wasn’t allowed to go for the World Cup, he challenged the association for a match between the girls’ and the boys’ team which resulted in a greater victory.

This teaches an entrepreneur that no matter how distant a goal might seem, it is always achievable if one has faith. Moreover, one should take the risks even though s/he thinks it won’t work because one can’t always forecast the outcome.

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5. Motivate your team

The coach says “Jo nahi ho sakta, wahi toh karna hai” which shows that he trusts his team completely to achieve what they think they can’t. Also, the “sattar minute” speech before the World Cup final was his way to motivate his team and supercharge them to give their best on the field. He also motivated an arrogant Bindiya to play a match against Russia because he knew that she was the only one who could dodge a man-to-man marking.

Just like Khan in the movie, one needs to constantly show faith in their team and inspire them constantly in order to do well. This builds team integrity and the willingness to succeed.

Watch this movie if you haven’t already!

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