Karate Lessons that Apply to Agency Life

Karate Lessons that Apply to Agency Life

I don’t often talk about Karate, at least not in my agency life or professional life.

But, I thought I’d share something I picked up at training recently. And no, it’s not a black eye…

It’s hard to believe, isn’t it? A middle-aged, out of shape, marketing wonk learning a martial art like Karate. After all, Karate is a fighting system. Not something you often need in a marketing or agency environment.

But, when my son started training and asked me to join too, I couldn’t say no. I love spending time with my boys, so I signed up.

Anyway, three years down the track and sporting a purple and white belt, one of the many things I have picked up from the instructor (aka Sensei) is about intent.

And it relates heavily to being in business and running an agency.

It’s easy when you throw a punch (tsuki) or a kick (geri) to go through the motions. Muscle memory enables you to shoot out your fist or foot really quite easily.

But, if you actually look at the movement, often you don’t have the intent to take out your opponent? Remember. Karate is a fighting system.

You are just keeping up, doing the movements. There’s no power or targeting. No real intent.

I find it’s the same in business.

If you’re running an agency, I bet you plan on growing your revenue this year. But how often do you say this and nothing happens?

Do you really have the right level of intent? Perhaps you know it as motivation.

In Karate, if the intent isn’t there, there’s a good chance your opponent is going to hit you back and hard. It’s probably going to hurt. In agency life, if you aren’t motivated it’s a fair bet you’re standing still.

If you have been trying to grow an agency but got stuck at £1m or $500k, or whatever, for a few years, ask yourself if you are properly motivated.

Do you have enough intent? Do you have the right intent? Are you throwing all you’ve got into growing your agency, or just going through the motions because it sounds good to run your own shop?

You have to really mean it to make it happen in Karate, just as you do in the agency business. Or in any business for that matter.

This year I am going to work much harder at making everything count in my agency life and business in general. Fewer things, more focus, more intent.

I really don’t want to get hit back in Karate or in business.

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