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6 Business Lessons Learned From "Breaking Bad"
Written by Amanda Baltazar
 
Congratulations to the cast and crew of AMC’s "Breaking Bad"! Over the weekend, they won the very well-deserved Emmy Award for Outstanding Drama Series. Also, congrats to Anna Gunn for winning Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series!
 
As many of you all know, we are on the last season of the masterpiece created by Vince Gilligan. As sad as it is, all good things must come to an end. 
 
It has been quite a roller coaster ride as we have all watched Walter White (Bryan Cranston) and Jesse Pinkman (Aaron Paul) throw their lives into the dumpster. I’m so sad to see it end, but there are many takeaways from the series. Among these are a few tips on starting and maintaining your own company/business. Each business leader in the series can teach us something to use in our own careers.
 
WARNING: If you are not caught up on the latest episodes of "Breaking Bad", you may want to tread lightly as you continue to read, or bookmark this and read it after you’ve caught up!
 
Let’s begin...
 
 
1. Krazy-8
Oh, how could anyone forget Krazy-8 and his bike lock prison? He simply let his ego get the best of him. He threatened Walt to teach him how to make highly pure meth when he should have approached him with more compassion. He underestimated his competition and, well, you don’t want to go up against Walter White.
 
Lesson: Be careful when dealing with your competition; sometimes threats may not be the best option. Know with whom you are dealing because you may be overestimating your knowledge and underestimating your rival’s skills.
 
 
2. Tuco Salamanca
Tuco, you didn’t even see it coming. You made it all about your reputation and you trusted Heisenberg. For you, that was your biggest mistake. Not to mention you beat one of your trusted men to death.
 
Lesson: You have to trust the people you work with, which means finding the right people to do the job. It’s definitely easier said than done, but once you find the right people to back you up, you can breathe a bit easier.
 
 
3. Saul Goodman
“You’d better call Saul!” Probably one of my favorite characters of the series. Saul knows the right people and has all the connections. Fun Fact: Saul is getting his own spin-off prequel series!
 
Lesson: Don’t be afraid to network and talk to people. Walt wouldn’t have gotten anywhere if he didn’t have Saul on his side. Not to mention that Saul was very careful about his business as a whole.
 
 
4. Gus Fring
Gus was a very talented businessman and a great entrepreneur. He constantly was one step ahead of the DEA and was very calculated. He worked at his branch of Los Pollos Hermanos all the time to keep an eye on everything.
 
Lesson: Keep your friends close but your enemies closer. Make sure you know the ins and outs of everything going on in your company, as well as what’s going on around it. It never hurts to see what the competition is up to.
 
 
5. Lydia Rodarte-Quayle
Got to hand it to her, the girl thinks big. With her position, she was able to get the very lucrative product all the way to Europe. She was also crazy paranoid, but so far in the show, she’s the last woman standing aside from Jack and his crew. I don’t count them as business leaders because they have no use but to kill people.  
 
Lesson: Being a little paranoid can be a good thing. It keeps you on your toes and working harder.
 
 
6. Walter White, AKA Heisenberg
He used his skills as a chemistry teacher to create the purest methamphetamines ever. He was brave and bold in his actions to get his way. He made the right moves at the right times.
 
Lesson: Have a good product or service. This is the foundation of your business, and without it, it will be hard to succeed. But most of all, don’t be afraid to take a calculated risk. Walt knew when to hold ‘em or fold ‘em, in poker terms. He also knew when to raise the stakes. Take a risk but be smart about it! 
 
 
One thing that all of these characters can teach us about business is that there’s always some one who is trying to do better than you, so watch your back!
 
Thank you "Breaking Bad" for the business lessons as well as an emotional five seasons! Cheers to a wonderful, highly-anticipated series finale on Sunday, September 29th!
 
 
- Amanda Baltazar, YH Staff