Customers, whether they consciously think so or not, want to be lead. The tricky thing is that they also need to feel like they are in control at the same time. This is where the art part of business comes in.

When a customer comes into contact with a business, whether it be a store, website, or via telephone, they want their experience to be convenient. Some want to be swept off their feet by customer service, looking for more of an aggressive approach. Some want to be left alone more, and not bothered by customer service, depending more on product placement being easy either in the store or website. They know exactly what they want. Either way, businesses need to lead their consumers the way the consumer wants to be lead, not how they want to lead the consumer.

This can not be done via a script. Being receptive to the vibe of each customer is a great skill, and a necessary one in today’s day and age where consumers have so many choices. It used to be that if you were loud enough and you could produce stuff for cheap, you’d win. This is still the case in some areas, but things are changing fast. If your business upsets someone, they have an almost endless number of other places they can go, and when they get home, they can log in to their Facebook or Twitter account and tell 200 of their friends how horrible their experience was. Things are getting back to small town rules, which is refreshing, but businesses will have to adapt after having it their way for so long. Word of mouth is on steroids now, and if businesses don’t do their sole job of taking care of the customer, they’ll find they won’t be around long.

We can work on this skill of leading in the dojo, it’s a skill we work on all the time. During training, some attackers come in faster and more aggressive, and some come in slower. Some come in fast but sloppy, some come in slow but deliberate. Our Aikido improves tenfold when we feel this. I totally see the parallel to this practice off the mat in the business world. Each attack must be dealt with differently.

One comment

  1. This is “capturing the lead’ in it essence. We do need to take our martial training and thinking ‘off the mat’ and ‘into the world”. In my last RMCAT weekend class I had three muti millioaires.
    They were net people ‘internet gurs’ and one ran self-defense website as well. I felt his advertising there was bit ‘over the top’ and joked with him about it.

    He told me “Peyton you have the absolute best, most practical self-defense program available It has changed my idea of what self-defense training really is or should be and I have been training for 23 years now in various arts”

    Then he said something that hit hoe with e, “Yiou kniow how RMCAT changes people’s lives and it goes beyong their ability to aavoid a fight or prevailinn one, it enetrs into evry aspect of their lives. But they can’t know that until they come here right?”

    I had to laugh as I have known for years that is true and it why I offer ebryone a 100% money back guarantee if they fifnish the course and don’t feel they got far more than we promised (which is a lot too).
    Then he said “Then anything oyu can do to get people here is for their benifit isn’t it? So why not sell it as best as a aggresively as you poosibly can? ”

    I knew he his that and his website is the # 1 website ranked for SD on the whole internet too. People actually pay a monthly fee to be able to go to his web site!

    I think AIKIDO is the sameway really. When we can bring someone into the dojo we have a chance to really improve their lives and on many levels too. But we do, and just as you say need to ‘give the people what they want’ because that is the only way we can ‘show then them what they NEED’.

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