Business Lessons from The Walking Dead, Season 6 Episode 9

For those of us who have the sickness known as “TWD Syndrome”, The Walking season 6 episode 9 delivered enough punch to make up for the amount of time we had to go without!

In the first ten minutes, I found myself on edge, laughing, cringing and coming off my couch. Let’s just say, the writers left nothing on the table and started out guns blazing. (Or actually, in Daryl’s case, a rocket launcher.) The episode was laced with several lessons we could take to the office this week.  Here are two for you to nimble on.

Know when to cut them: The moral battle between Morgan and Carol over when to and when not to kill has remained a theme over the last few episodes. Morgan believes everyone has a the opportunity to change so he tends to avoid killing anyone who is a non-walker. In contrast, Carol is a fierce mamma bear who will kill anyone who threatens the community. Morgan’s decision to spare the life of the Wolf put the fledgling community’s only doctor in jeopardy.

Lesson: Sometimes we have to realize not everyone will change their ways. If you have someone like The Wolf on your team, taking the Morgan philosophy could threaten the rest of your team.  As cold and cruel as it may sound, most teams function better under leaders who, like Carol, make the tough decisions and remove anything or anyone who will threaten the vitality of their team. Bottom line, when in doubt, make the kill shot.

Everyone needs a Daryl and Michonne on the team: Daryl Dickens is a quiet character on the show. He tends to be the voice of reason as well one who can always be counted on when times are tough. Similarly, Michon is a complex character with quite reason, amazing strength and raw brutality when needed.

Both characters can be counted on when critical decisions need to be made. In S6E9, Daryl brought down fire on a band of thugs to save Abraham and Sasha (probably one of my favorite scenes). Michonne took the kill shot later in the episode when the young man threatened to kill Rick.

Lesson: Don’t underestimate your steady team members who are critical to the success of your organization. You likely have reserved team members like Daryl and Michonne who are always willing to step up to the plate when needed. Although they do not require a lot of attention or maintenance, it’s always a good idea to show them some love and ensure they know their value.

The Walking Dead writers continue to hypnotize me with the show’s plot and character development. It’s an added benefit that each episode tends to have business lessons laced throughout.

So for all of the The Walking Dead fans out there, what was your business take-away from Season 6, episode 9?