Squid Game, Netflix’s dystopian-tinged Korean show, is a lot of things: a reflection of the grotesque side of the 21st century, scripted legacy of how economic hardships and poverty can lead to apathy, and how a children’s game “red-light green-light” can turn into a living nightmare when Illuminati-type figures are at the helm, waiting to kill and be killed. And for those who haven’t binge-watched the 9-episode series, the latter reference will make more sense — disturbingly so — after the first episode itself. 


In short, all the black stuff, without a single ounce of white or grey, and yet, the shocking plot, characters, story arc, and themes stirred the hearts and minds of the global audience. 


But before we begin, a SPOILER ALERT is sure in order




Released on September 17 this year and written by director Hwang Dong-hyuk, Squid Game has now become the most popular standout series, reaching 111 million views and generating a whopping $891.1 million impact value, more than what another Netflix behemoth “The Queen’s Gambit” had garnered. 


Being an overnight sensation, the series spills some beans on the dark side of a secret society, luring 456 down-their-luck individuals and causing bloodshed in bits and pieces as they participate in six children games with the end goal of being paid billions in South Korean currency — roughly amounting to $38 million USD — if someone survives, that is. 


And let us not forget the “VIPs” enjoying and gambling on the players (as they began to be called; all for fun and enjoyment). Traumatizing but true, is what we would like to call this abhorrent affair, being imprinted on our minds after every single episode. 


Squid Game: Lessons for the wise and driven


Seeming to be a work of satire and postmodern morality, Squid Game points towards the need for altruism, a practice near its extinction in the 21st century. The show is full of ethical and emotional dilemmas that strike a chord with everyone regardless of their age or culture. 


Squid Game also holds multiple lessons on survival, greed, friendship, teamwork, quick response, and more, making it less of a modern-day nightmare, and a series worth watching. And even though the overall theme is strongly anti-capitalist, the series provides a glimpse of several important business takeaways, noticed by a few but loved by all. 


Here, is a glimpse of 7 such lessons that your inner hustler can get inspired from. Attached with each takeaway is a fully functional PowerPoint template that you can use to put your ideas into action. So read through and apply to not get eliminated! 


1. Never undervalue brand identity


Before binge-watching the show, you must have been assaulted by its imagery. With circles, squares, and triangles taking time and space, the show’s visuals have been its USP and brand identity. 




Although the shapes are too simple, the way the show uses them is a game-changer and gives them a new life. Whether they are showcased in the logo, the business cards, the red overalls donned by the army, or the character design, the strong branding is perpetuated throughout the series, helping the viewer reproduce and build a strong connection to the instances portrayed. The gaming shapes turn into a horrifying experience, propelling the show to newer heights. 


The takeaway and the template 


The inspiration here is to create an undeniable brand identity for your business with simple and neat visuals as opposed to complex and artistic ones because complexity does not necessarily lead to better results. 


While Squid Game would have been a hit without its endearing graphics, its visual identity played a crucial role in catapulting it to the very top of the hierarchy, surpassing other gems like Bridgerton, The Queen’s Gambit, and the like. 

Related read: 7 Lessons in Business Strategy From The Queen’s Gambit

As for building a robust brand identity, here is a PowerPoint template to get you started. 


Brand Identity PowerPoint Presentation


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2. Be a leader you want your team to follow


Each game in the series imposes different stress and pressure challenges on the players. The Dalgona cookie game is perhaps the most iconic with a unique approach altogether. With a difficult shape in hand and time running, Seong Gi-hun, the protagonist, is able to devise a creative strategy to win the pressure test. Sweat and a bright light help him realize that licking the candy is a better option than carving it out with the needle. Therefore, unlike others who rushed and lost their lives, his intellectual decision kept him alive. 


Going by the number 456, he demonstrated true leadership qualities by licking the cookie and carving out the shape of an umbrella, which, when followed by others, helps save their lives. 


Squid Game Licks GIF - Squid Game Licks GIFs


The takeaway and the template


Regardless of the pressure and difficulties, an entrepreneur should demonstrate leadership qualities much like Seong Gi-hun did. This also serves as an excellent example of dynamic leadership and decision-making skills, which are important traits for business professionals. 


As far as exhibiting leadership skills is concerned, here is a PowerPoint template to help you out. 


Leadership PowerPoint Presentation


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3. Tap into the current trends 


Squid Game taps into the current trends of reality and game shows smartly. The VIPs enjoying the “horse race” puts us in the shoes of the players. Squid Game exploits this propensity of ours — indulging in gripping shows, rooting for the players, building an emotional bond with them, praying for their well-being, and more. This cultural obsession can help magnify brand outreach, an approach used by several organizations. 





The takeaway and the template


The message here is very clear, i.e. to grasp and acknowledge the new-age trends and culture as they can be your express ticket to success! 


The following PowerPoint template will help you stay in line with the newest trends and use them to your advantage. 


Current Market Trends PowerPoint Presentation


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4. Dwell on considerable pain points 


Squid Game revolves around three obvious pain points: money problems, debt, and poverty. Hence, the struggle that the 456 players go through is pretty much relatable. The show's honesty and brutality leave us wondering if humanity is still alive or buried under a tombstone, with the latter seeming to be true. Its refreshing plot, though dwelling on emotional dilemmas, is something to look up to, apart from superhero fantasies or shows housing nostalgic instances (like Stranger Things). Therefore, it can be concluded that the situations that the show draws from the three pain points make it a must-watch. 




In the context of the plot of Squid Game, the financial turmoil of the people tempts them to participate in a few children’s games and win money. Sure, the first offer was a lie, yet they conceded to their monetary needs and participated in the life-or-death games with prospects of living rather grim. 


The takeaway and the template 


The takeaway from the harrowing metaphors is rather surprising; that no product or service is perfect. There is always “something” to it, as is revealed in the show later on. What appears to be a tempting offer turns out to be an invitation from the Grim Reaper. 


Therefore, don’t focus on perfecting your product; rather address the pain points of your prospects as any ups and downs can be dealt with if the principal demands are met! 


With the following PowerPoint template, you can address and eradicate the considerable problems your consumers are facing. 


Problem And Resolution PowerPoint Presentation


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5. Agility conquers it all 


Flexibility is the key to adapting to newer business landscapes and Squid Game is a true representation of this agile approach. To do this, it is important to experiment with newer products and services much like Cho Sang-woo (another protagonist) did in the game red-light green-light. Upon realizing the motion-sensing doll, and its way of “eliminating” players, he quickly changed his actions, thereby saving him and his friends. 




The takeaway and the template 


Much like Sang-woo’s life was at stake in the game, an entrepreneur is tormented with the fear of failing his business. Therefore, the takeaway here is that you should adopt an agile approach and experiment constantly. Also, change your tactics if it does not yield positive results. 


Another takeaway here is that Squid Game gives you two contrasting ways to succeed. One in the form of an empath, Seong Gi-hun, and the other as villainous and naive as Cho Sang-woo. However, when combined, they deliver the best, proving to be the true protagonists. So the choice is yours to make! 


Apropos of that, here is a PowerPoint template to become more flexible and embrace agile behavior. 



Agile Planning PowerPoint Presentation


Download this template 

6. Play to your strengths for a winning outcome 


The villainous and naive Jang Deok-su almost loses the marble challenge while playing against his gangster friend. However, with his reasoning ability, he is able to turn the tables. He negotiates his way into playing a different marble game, helping him play his strength at the last minute, making him the winner. 




The takeaway and the template 


The lesson here is to play to your strengths and negotiate with the investors and stakeholders who are housing some concerns about your business. Prepare to stand strong and firm as to what you are offering and experience mutual cooperation! 


Here is a template to help you do so with ease.


Business SWOT Analysis Product Comparison PowerPoint Presentation


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7. Plan, strategize, and conquer 


The Tug of War is perhaps the most intense and heart-wrenching episode of the series because despite the realization that the crucial characters won’t die, it made us anxious as to what strategy will help them survive. It is also a game with the most valuable lesson — sometimes, brain triumphs brawn (cue Ill-nam). 


In this episode, the players have to build a team of 10 and play an ambiguous game, later found to be the classic tug of war (with a twist of course). Because of their empathetic personalities, the “protagonist’s team” has to settle for three women and an old man, leaving them weak. 


However, with proper planning and strategizing, they manage to outdo the competitors, saving their lives. Another remarkable lesson indeed! 




The takeaway and the template 


The life of business professionals is similar to what the players experienced in the show — limited resources and putting up a ferocious fight against “large muscles," either winning or losing. With their secret “weapons,” an entrepreneur has to outdo the unidentified competition. Therefore, working together and brainstorming at each step reels in the best results. 


A professional should also consider what his team is good at, how to play to their strengths, and what branding strategies are needed to pursue excellence — all pointing towards teamwork, planning, and strategizing! 


Considering this, here is an ingenious complete deck to plan, strategize, and build a cohesive team culture in your organization.


100 Days Action Plan PPT Design


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Bringing it all together


What a series indeed! How about season 2, which is already in the works? Are you looking forward to it as much as we are? We hope so! 


Who would have thought a dystopian show like Squid Game could have been a remarkable feat — presenting more valuable lessons than an actual business conference. Well, jokes aside, it is surprising but true. Squid Game is the mirror to an exciting era driven by teamwork, visualization, and planning, all supported by this guide and our templates. 


This is your green light. Onward and upward!