Lessons Entrepreneurs Can Learn from Shah Rukh Khan

Corporate Grooming & Etiquette 14th November 2016 Sona Bajaj

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“I will deliver with passion and quality; else take your money back.”

This is the success mantra of one of the biggest celebrity turned business emperor, the badshaah of Bollywood, SRK. With an asset value of around Rs.2000 crore, of which around Rs.800 crore comprises of his business engagements, one can definitely learn how to build and run a successful business empire from him. It doesn’t matter if he isn’t your favourite actor. There’s more to him than being just a handsome face onscreen. Here are a few lessons you as entrepreneurs can learn from Shah Rukh Khan.

You must have that fire within

To be a successful entrepreneur, you must have that passion and fire within you. Always think big, and have high but realistic goals. Strike the iron when it’s hot, if you think that the idea is worth it. If you believe that the time is right to implement a plan, go for it and start your venture – it will hit the target audience. Delay in taking action won’t give you any results. SRK started his first venture, Dreamz Unlimited in 2002. He went on to dabble in a string of different businesses and is now the owner, financier and face of his brand, Red Chillies Entertainment.


Believe in the work you do and follow your instincts, and you will see that success will follow. Whether you start something on your own or invest in another venture, always believe in it. If you want to make a difference, or are attempting to change the world even a fraction, you must have full faith and belief in what you are doing. Though making money is important, don’t just focus solely on that aspect of business because those who do, perish in the long run. When SRK decided to diversify his business by dabbling in Cricket, IPL was a new form of the game and no one could be sure if it would work or not. But Shah Rukh believed in that this form of the game had potential for profit and went ahead with it. Today, his team is one of the most successful and profitable IPL teams.

Strive for excellence

Let excellence be your most important deliverable. You have to make people fall in love with your work, service, and/or product. You must provide them with an experience that translates into a big “WOW”. Give them what they don’t know they want (like Apple’s iPod) and they will come back to you for more. This will set you apart, raise you above the crowd, and give you that edge over others. Success may or may not be immediate, but you will be a player for the long run. Way back in the early 2000s, SRK realized that Bollywood lacked in the department of world class visual effects. In 2005, Red Chillies started their own VFX studio, which is now amongst the leading ones in India. Movies like Krishh, Ra.One, etc. came out of the Red Chillies VFX Studio, with the latter going on to win all the major film awards, including the National Award for its spectacular visual effects.

Related: How to Stay Focussed at Work and Beat Distractions

Don’t run after numbers

Numbers are limiting. In business, everything cannot be quantified. Instead, when an entrepreneur looks at the intangibles, the sky is the limit for them. When you offer quality, quantity will follow on its own. Whichever one of his business ventures you look at, SRK has always opted to offer quality first. Success in terms of numbers, have inevitably followed. His IPL team, Kolkata Knight Riders didn’t perform well right from the beginning. But Khan was adamant on bringing in the best cricketing talent across the world on board his team. It is for everyone to see how KKR has transformed into one of the most popular and successful IPL team and is also one of the most profitable investments made by Khan.

Related: 7 Common Mistakes to Avoid When Starting Up

Seek knowledge and grow as an individual

“In my whole life, I have known no wise people who didn’t read all the time — none, zero.” ~ Charlie Munger. The only way you can grow is by learning more and the only way you can learn more is by reading more. SRK has a huge appetite for knowledge, he is one of the most intelligent & well-read celebrities in India. Right from being updated about the latest news to gaining knowledge from books, he does all of it. Not only that, he makes it a point to persistently study and closely observe a few successful entrepreneurs like Rajiv Bajaj, KV Kamath and Mukesh Ambani, who are also his friends.

His passion, relentless hard work, intelligence, thirst for knowledge, and dedication are some of the reasons why he has emerged as a BADSHAH in the corporate world as well!

This article was first published in Business World.

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