01 Mar Sumo Marketing like a champion
Many years ago while in Fukuoka, Japan I went to the Grand Final of a Sumo Wrestling Tournament. It was the 15th and final day of the competition and it went from early in the morning to late in the evening with battle after battle of professional Sumo Wrestlers in a knockout round competition, competing for a massive trophy, but most importantly the title of Grand Champion.
The ritual of a fight starts out with some theatrics no doubt, but when the battle commences there is no doubt about it, the two opponents are putting all their years of training and dedication into it. It’s actually quite fierce to see and nothing like I had imagined it would be.
This experience has stayed with me all these years later. I had purchased tickets thinking it would be fun and it was, but it was also so much more. I realised that the men before me were not just there for entertainment, they were athletes and striving to be the best they could be, not just for themselves but for their family, those who had trained them, their supporters and their culture.
When it comes to life time commitment to a cause, we can all take a lesson from the art of Sumo Wrestling. Sure, they are large men with unusual battle attire and they are not commonly seen on Fox Sports but behind the facade is a true athlete who has been dedicated to their craft since they were a boy. While other kids around them went on to try and make their mark in IT or robotics, they dedicated themselves to the art of Sumo.
The sumo code, like other martial arts is built on a number of core principals and is highly regulated. They often live in communal training stables and every aspect of their mental and physical training is dictated by long held tradition.
Only elite, committed soldiers of the sport become champions.
We can all learn from the mind set of the Sumo. Not only do we need to be strong (and stay standing when our competitors fall), we should be honorable (using skill to win not cheap tricks), be committed (viewing it as the long game to become a true champions), adhere to a the code (even if we could cheat the system, we know it’s not right and believe it will eventually have a cost) and most of all, be fiercely competitive (wanting to win every time we face an opponent no matter how much bigger or more well known they are).
Strive to create a moment. Don’t give up easily. Believe that it’s about working hard and smart to create a better future. Be the sumo.