5 Leadership Lessons we can learn from Princess Leia

You may not know this about me, but I am a huge nerd (jk, those who know me IRL are definitely already aware). So when it came time to start a short series on leadership and I looked around at some of the women from whom I’ve taken inspiration, my mind naturally fell to Sci-Fi.

I could wax poetic about the importance of Sci-Fi to our culture and the wonderful things it does to demonstrate diversity in points of view and characters, but this is a business blog so we’re gonna focus on leadership.

With the new Star Wars looming on the horizon it only seemed fitting that we take a look at the beautiful, baller Princess Leia. She’s a princess and a member of the Imperial Senate and a major player in the Rebel Alliance. Forget the metal bikini, this woman is bigger than #girlboss.

Fair warning: lots of Star Wars trivia lies ahead.

HUSTLE-BLOG.COM // 5 Important Leadership Lessons we learned from Princess Leia

Never give up

Even while being tortured and threatened, Princess Leia never gives up the location of the Rebel Alliance base to the Galactic Empire. Then, when the bad guys make good on their threats and destroy her home planet, does she let this tragic and major setback stop her efforts to rebel against the Empire? No! She channels it to fuel her determination.

Read more on not giving up: Why Failure is the Best Life Coach

Think quickly under fire

As her own rescue from the Death Star begins to go awry and her rescuers seem bent on just staying in a losing shootout with incoming Stormtroopers, Princess Leia takes control of the situation. She quickly figures out an alternative escape and makes the decision for the team to use it.

Balance planning with calculated risks

Sure, the plan to blow up the Death Star has only a tiny chance of success. Still, Princess Leia is not only fully aware of the risks but is honest with the team about what they’ll be undertaking. She doesn’t sugarcoat the situation, nor does she send the fighter pilots in blind. Even though it’s a risky attempt, it’s still planned out down to the last detail and contingency.

Learn how to communicate your plan:
How to Boost your Storytelling Skill

Follow your instincts

After escaping the Empire yet another time, Princess Leia senses that something is off and one of her crew might be in danger. She orders the ship to turn around and they find and are able to rescue a badly injured Luke from certain death. 

Don’t shy away from being a stone cold negotiator

Leia poses as a bounty hunter selling Chewbacca in order to rescue Han Solo from Jabba the Hut, a ruthless and vicious gangster. Rather than be intimidated, she relentlessly negotiates the selling price with Jabba while holding an armed thermal detonator--all without breaking a sweat.

What life lessons have you learned from Star Wars? Don’t be shy, this is a safe space for nerds.