The Game of Thrones guide to getting ahead

Posted April 22, 2013, by Josie Chun

Game of Thrones makes for enthralling viewing for millions of avid fans worldwide. It provides a fascinating glimpse of the complex machinations involved in surviving in a dog-eat-dog (or direwolf-eat-direwolf) world. Each character has a different approach to getting ahead in this highly political and dangerous environment – whose approach is most effective, and could these strategies be applied in your own life and career? 

Everyone hates him and wants to kill him, he’s the product of an incestuous relationship and he’s a total git – but hey, he’s King, and he wields his power with sheer malevolence and a taste for sadism. He may have his ill-gotten power for now, but the success of his approach may be short-lived. 

Eddard Stark is a man of integrity who compromises his honour in an attempt to save his daughters – and he loses his head for it. The take-home message is not to ditch your integrity, but never count on evil men to stick to their word. 

This cunning character hasn’t let his physical disadvantage keep him down; he survives using his clever wiles and has still managed to have a rollicking good time while he’s at it. Smooth-talking and slyly conniving, Tyrion’s strategy of flying below the radar of those who underestimate him may be one of the most effective yet.

Littlefinger must be the ultimate Machiavellian, using his smooth ways and forked tongue to insinuate himself into everyone’s confidence, and using his spies to inform him of every plot going. Another master manipulator who lives by his wits rather than his sword, he may be the ultimate survivor.

Beneath the Mother Teresa act and visiting of poor orphans lies a ruthlessly ambitious young woman, but her charm and surface philanthropy will win her popularity with the masses.

His ambition overreached his ability, but without the goods he could never prevail – and now he's paying a cruel, cruel price. The Greyjoys of the world should know their limitations and live within them. It's far too late, but he should have stuck by Robb Stark. 

He had looks, money and fighting ability on his side, but now bereft of hand, it will be interesting to see how he manages to get by. Stay tuned to see how Jaime survives, but we have no doubt he will. 

Daenerys' leadership is characterised by unwavering self-belief and steely resolve, combined with a strong sense of humanity and fairness. Flanked by an army of devoted Unsullied and three fast-growing dragons, her ascendancy seems inevitable.

Which character do you admire most? Leave a comment and let us know.

Josie Chun

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