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Red light…..Green light!!!! Even if you haven’t seen the Netflix tv series, you’ve probably heard about the deadly game where failure means certain death. Anyone who has seen the iconic Squid Game understands the adrenaline and excitement it pumps through your veins as you anticipate what happens when the contestants advance each round.

Into the Squid Game Universe

The Squid Game story follows the ordeals of 456 contestants, who are mostly poor, desperate, and heavily indebted. They try to navigate their way through a deadly series of children’s games. The winner stands to win the sum of $38 million dollars while losers pay with their lives. 

As of 13th October 2021, Squid Game was named Netflix’s biggest series with a whopping 111 million viewers and counting. Squid Game has surpassed the popular Bridgerton TV series to become the public’s favorite show and is topping the charts in various countries including the US, UK, and South Korea.

Squid Game in 2008

We can say the series is an overwhelming success right? Let’s backtrack a little and look at the backstory on Squid Game. The series was created in 2008 by the director Hwang Dong-Hyuk, making the concept over a decade old. As at that period, the idea was considered too gory and brutal. It was rejected by the majority of the film producers he pitched to.


Squid Game in 2021

13 years later in today’s 2021, most viewers are able to relate to the storyline. It spotlights people attempting dangerous get-rich-quick schemes for money. Director Hwang seized this opportunity to pitch his idea to Netflix. During this 13 year wait, Hwang had written and directed other movies such as ‘Silenced’ and ‘The Fortress’ which were both successes in their own right.


Lessons from the Creative Mind of Squid Game

Squid game has become a focal point of discussion in many spheres, including comedy, folklore, and even marketing. Many businesses have taken one or two lessons from the movie which they have adapted into their business dealings. 

We can take a page from Hwang Dong-Hyuk’s book as Nigerian entrepreneurs and business people. 

Here are 3 important lessons I personally learnt from the Squid Game’s director:

1. The Art of “Working” Patience

Patience is a virtue business people should cultivate. But patience while working is even more profitable. Entrepreneurship is one of the most tasking responsibilities in today’s world. Hwang had to wait over 12 years for his script to become viable for Netflix.

Within that timeframe, he worked on other script ideas and produced movies that were also rated as successes. He didn’t give up on his movie script and the moment he felt he could grab Netflix’s attention, he did and it ended as a win-win for him and the movie streaming platform.

It is imperative as a small business owner with ideas to learn the art of being patient while working. Understand time as an investment and know when to take a break to focus on other projects. In this case, Hwang’s patience allowed his idea to bloom.

Remember, your ‘big idea’ isn’t working doesn’t mean it never will. This doesn’t mean you cannot do other great things while you wait. 

2. Simplicity Always Wins The Day

Hwang explained that much of the inspiration for the Squid Game series came from reading other survival comics of the time. However, he found the ideas too complicated and complex for him to follow and decided to focus on a series of children’s games which he then evolved.

Simplicity is part of what made the series a resounding success as both the characters and viewers were able to identify with the children’s games. This element made it easy for everyone to understand and follow the rules. 

Dear entrepreneur, as you pitch that big idea to everyone, ensure it is something that resonates with your audience. Keep it simple. Ideas are easier to pass across when they can be related to everyday life. I tell you much of the world’s most successful business people have leveraged on simplicity.

3. Look To The Future 

Look to the future. Sounds cheesy right!! Well, let me explain something. As of 2008 when Hwang Dong-Hyuk wrote the series, it was not quite relatable as such stories were not common.

Fast forward to the present day, many people are now able to empathize with the story and the ordeals of its characters. In his South Korean homeland, Hwang saw the rise in debt and poverty and the strain of being indebted to vicious loan sharks.

All around the world, more people are getting invested in crazy get-rich-quick schemes. Also, the idea that someone wants to play a deadly game for a whopping sum isn’t so alien anymore.

There are many reasons to give up on your idea. It may not be very believable at a particular point in time. But you have to keep growing it. The majority of the advancements we have in science and technology today are based on incredible ideas generated by forward-thinking men decades ago. 

So I say it to you again: Look to the future!!l Look to grow better. Look to make impact!

What next?
At Persuasion network  we do more than help Nigerian businesses attract customers online. We believe that every Nigerian business should have all the support services and tools they need to grow their businesses fast, empower their staff and make impact! their environment.

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