As human beings, we’re always looking for what’s next and are easily distracted by the next shiny object that is put in front of us. There are so many things marketed to us (especially this time of year) that we don’t really need, but that we might really want. There’s new phones, televisions, cars, games, furniture, events, jewelry, clothes, toys and on and on. Although they may not be things you need, you are left really wanting them and FEELING like you really need it.
It’s even worse for us as business owners. With our livelihood on the line, we are always looking for the next big thing that will contribute to our success, that will get us to our goals and that will help us achieve the lifestyle we really want. There are seminars, training programs, books, coaching programs, audio programs, school management software and on and on.
If you look, you can find many coaches and companies claiming to be able to help you run your school, but how do you know that you are working with the right one? How do you know that you’re not with someone who is going to flame out in the next year or so? This is a big deal because your future depends on it!
Even just over the last 16 years, since I began teaching, I could give you a list of 50 names of people who were supposedly “the One” who could make you and your school successful. From that list, there may be five that are still around and are making a real difference for instructors and helping them become better instructors and school owners.
The bad news is that there are 50 more right behind them.
As a school owner, you can look in any martial arts magazine where you are bombarded with ads for how to get new students, new computer programs, billing companies, cage fitness, mma, how start an after school program picking up kids from school, patch programs for retention… there’s even a program being sold now that teaches you how to start a cardio kickboxing class for new mothers and the mothers train with the babies. We’ll see how long that one lasts.
Even if some of these are decent money making opportunities, they take work and take you away from the core of your business and what you need to be doing to pay the bills.
After discussing this with many instructors, I’ve discovered that after the honeymoon period is over with whatever that shiny object was, they become totally disenchanted and totally give it up. Unfortunately, by this point they’ve wasted a ton of valuable time and resources!
My father and I have experienced this first hand as well. We’ve had cardio kickboxing programs, cage fitness, an mma class, and others – but guess what we do now?
Only Taekwon-Do… and we’re more successful for it.
Stick with what you know, with what you do best and you will be more successful in the long run. Avoid chasing the shiny objects because as Ben Franklin said, “time is money.”
Steve Jobs, the late founder of Apple, had a question that he would ask himself every morning. He asked this of himself everyday to keep him on track, to keep him clear and to keep him on purpose. He would look in the mirror and ask, “If I die tonight, will I be glad that I did what I’m planning to do today?” Ask yourself that question everyday and if the answer is no, then change your plan! It will also keep you on track and away from those shiny objects.
Consider yourself warned: The shiny objects will never stop coming.
When you are being true to yourself, are clear about what you are up to and what you want to accomplish, many of those shiny objects will begin to lose their luster and the ones that you notice will be the ones that are consistent with your path and that will help you make a real difference in achieving your goals.
About the Author:
Senior Instructor – Karstadt Taekwon-Do
Mr. Karstadt is the founder of 1 TKD Consulting and owns the longest running ITF Taekwon-Do school in Arizona, Karstadt Taekwon-Do in Phoenix, AZ with his father Master David Karstadt. He has been training since 1984, earned his Black Belt at the age of 8 and is currently an internationally renown intstructor teaching the culture, discipline, leadership and business skills of Taekwon-Do in classes and seminars to Instructors around the world. He has been a member of eight U.S. Taekwon-Do Teams and has traveled to 14 different countries competing in Taekwon-Do. He has won numerous medals at the World Championships and in international competition, most notably winning the 2004 World Championships in South Korea with two gold medals and the Men’s Team All Around Trophy. Mr. Karstadt currently resides in uptown Phoenix, Arizona with his wife and three children. Mr. Karstadt can be contacted by e-mail at email@example.com