Former Prime Minister Göran Persson on What We can Learn from The Netflix Hit Show ”House of Cards”

House of Cards

Last night, one of the leading strategic communication advisory firms, JKL, invited a selection of young professionals from the finance industry to a seminar on the art of communication in the style of Francis “Frank” J. Underwood. Speaking on the topic was no other than former Prime Minister of Sweden, Göran Persson.

Lessons from the White House

bild2Before Mr Persson entered the stage, Klas Landelius from JKL presented an analysis of the Netflix hit tv-show “House of Cards”. The two most important lessons we can learn from the show are:

1. Use the logic of media communication, which is quite opposite to business logic, to get your message across; support the underdog, evoke passion and emotions, and remember that confidentiality means that you have something to hide.

2. The image becomes politics and politics becomes life; In “House of Cards”, media painted the picture of Catherine Durant being the number one candidate for Secretary of State, an option the president had not even considered. The president, however, took in what the media said, put her on the short list and eventually chose her for the role. Everything orchestrated by Mr Underwood.

An example of big data analysis

An interesting thing about the show itself is that “House of Cards” is a perfect example of big data analysis. Netflix saw that director David Fincher has a very loyal fan base. They also noted that movies starring Kevin Spacey were a sure success, and that the British TV series “House of Cards” is one of the most popular shows on Netflix. Why not make a TV show with all three components – an American version of “House of Cards” with Kevin Spacey as the lead actor and David Fincher as the director?

Getting your message across

göran perssonPrime Minister Göran Persson then gave his view on communication and the secrets of getting your message across

1. Study, study, study! – You need to be the expert on the subject you are communicating.

2. Nothing gets communicated if you do not open your mouth! – Practice speaking your views out load and throw away the PowerPoint slides.

3. Be yourself!

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