Management Lessons from Padmaavat

3 min read

In life, we can win a single battle by being unethical but we cannot win the entire war. This is because, when we act unethically, we create a precedent – a bad name for ourselves and the organization that we represent. When this happens, our reputation starts preceding us, as a result of which ethical people start avoiding us like the plague.


One of my biggest learning came recently when I least expected it to – at the movie Padmaavat. I would like to share them with you here.

1. Never Give Up, No Matter the Outcome

Ratan Singh and the Mewars knew that they were on the verge of losing the war, yet they went out of the Fort to face the Khilji army and fought till the last. This shows that we must never say die, we must go about our business and do our best even when we understand that failure is imminent.

2. Traitors must get what they deserve

When Raghav Chetan was found guilty, he was ousted from the state which gave him a chance to go to Delhi and conspire against the Mewars. Had Ratan Singh kept him captive, he wouldn’t have been able to conspire and cause the war. On a similar note, if we happen to come across a traitor in the organization, it is how we deal with them is what matters.

3. A big ego can be the cause for downfall

If Raghav Chetan had not given in to his ego, if he had accepted what he had done then he would have had a different fate. Likewise, in business too, keeping the ego in check is crucial for success.

4. Treachery begets treachery

Khilji doesn’t respect Mehruneesa and kills her father and brother in front of her. She gets back at him by helping Padmavati and Ratan Singh escape. Similarly, in business too, setting the right example for others is of utmost importance.

5. In-depth Knowledge of your competition can be a lifesaver

When Khilji’s army comes with the innovative cannons, the Rajputs are shocked and had no idea how to retaliate. It was because of these innovative cannons that the walls of the Fort could be impregnated. This teaches us how important in-depth knowledge of your competition can be to your success.

6. Have faith in any situation

When Padmavati sews Ratan Rawal’s turban, she has tears in her eyes but she prepares him for war. She believes in her husband’s strength and doesn’t let the faith waver. To me it meant that no matter how fierce the competition, your confidence in your product or service should not waver.

7. Dignity over grief

When Padmavati learns of Ratan Singh’s demise, she doesn’t let grief take over. Instead, she motivates the women to act with dignity. Similarly, taking charge, making an action plan and pursuing it to the end even when loss is inevitable shows indomitable courage and dignity – a lesson for all businessmen.

8. Business ethics is vital

Khilji is not ethical when it comes to love or war. Now, while that gains him temporary victories, ultimately he is respected by none. Similarly in business, we see multiple examples where entrepreneurs who don’t follow ethics or morals end up with a bad name in the industry and ultimately, such people go out of business.