“Victorious warriors win first and then go to war, while defeated warriors go to war first and then seek to win.” ― Sun Tzu
This guy, Sun Tzu was a Chinese general, a military strategist and a philosopher who lived in ancient China. Some of you would know that he was the author of ‘The Art of War’ a widely influential work of military strategy that is often quoted philosophically.
Here he is talking about the need to think that you have won the battle, before you actually step into the battle field.
Let’s talk about another kind of battle. This is the scholarly kind of battle that has currently started in schools all over India. The annual ritual of session-ending student examinations has started. Students of primary, junior and senior classes are being mentally prepped by their teachers, guardians, parents, relatives and concerned acquaintances to get good marks. And, well, as all of you know, that’s one solid battle all right.
Months from February till April mark the start of a tension-enriched quest for scoring high percentage in school results. This becomes the sole reason of existence and living in many households.
May I add here, that all this effort and examination at such a young age in school is also one great inaugural lesson in marketing battle for you?
Once you step into school for the first time at Montessori level or KG grade, your teacher is ready to teach you the ABC of marketing.
Now, you are wondering what you are reading. You thought you would read about the Whys of marketing, but here I am talking about your first admission in school.
Bear with me, when I say that your school is actually your first default management college. School is where you are instilled the importance of marketing under the guise of securing high grades and marks and being labelled a good student.
You know what happens when good marketing of a product is done? You remember the product and soon enough some need arises and you go out and buy that product to try it. In the same manner, once you secure good marks in school, you stand out. You are counted as important and showered love and gifts by your teachers, friends, guardians, parents and relatives.
This is the point where you learn one important lesson in marketing. You have to market yourself well in the belief that it is good for the consumer. Once the marketing happens, your product value stays on top of the buying consumer ready to pay money via cash, debit card or credit card.
You are ‘that’ important and successful product that comes out of the school marketing machinery that everyone wants to buy. You are the meritorious student-product that has value written all over it. The school is ready to market the value of its product — you — to every other buyer/parent. Your success is the school’s success in marketing itself well.
You benefit, the school benefits, parent’s benefit, newer students enter the school portal and the marketing objective is achieved.
As you step out of the school with good grades, unknowingly you become a worthwhile product that the practical market would like to invest in and profit from.
You pass out of the college too and then step into the job and business market. You learn quickly that to show your profitability and value, you need to tell your prospective employer or angel investor that you have the brains. You market your ‘high’ school and college grades in lieu of lack of experience in the beginning. Once your initial value is accepted, your successful marketing is complete.
And then the cycle continues, where you have to market yourself yet again when you decide to change a job or go for more funds for your business.
Sun Tzu would be happy if in all this process, you would remain a victorious warrior winning the battle in the mind, before stepping into the battle zone.