May 11, 2014, Maaleh Adumim
I do my best to encourage people to train in Krav Maga. At the very least I try to offer some awareness and survival tips. I am passionate about what I do. I have a mission in life.
However, as passionate as I am about Krav Maga this does not translate into aggressive marketing. I do not send e mails to people who have not expressed in interest in our organization. I do not use marketing tricks to get e mail lists. And I do not pursue instructors who are members of other organizations.
But others do. In fact, that is the norm.
Königsbach-Stein, Germany, IKI Instructor Jürgen Köhler, bringing in students the old fashioned way, by working hard and teaching the best quality Krav Maga. Join us in Germany again in October 2014.
The other day I received an e mail inviting me to an instructor course. Clearly they have no idea who I am or they would not try and tempt me with their offer.
The advertisement offered many things;
It offered me "Hundreds of new students each year".
It offered me a program that would beat my competition. It offered all sorts of marketing support to increase my market share. It also offered me to become an instructor after a "Crash two day course",
I do not really understand what a crash course is. Try to learn an entire semester's worth of material in one night, like in college?
That was for guys who spent the entire semester partying and now were in a bind. "Crash course"! Is this education? Is this quality training?
Two days? Become an instructor in two days?
I am left speechless.
But that, however, is not the most troubling aspect about such ads, no, by far not. There is something much more disturbing.
What is most disturbing is there was not one word about why we should teach Krav Maga. There was not one word about the goal to help people in this increasingly dangerous and violent world.
Allow me to demonstrate by way of example.
Attention All! Great Opportunity!
For a limited time only you can become a surgeon . Yes you!
Imagine, after a short two day crash course you can have your own practice, charge thousands of dollars, amaze your friends with your new status and live the lifestyle you have always dreamed of.
Yes, it is all possible now.
OK, that's it, advertisement is over. So what is the problem?
For one I had always hoped that when someone chooses a career as a doctor it is because they actually care about people and want to help them.
Yes, I know that in many countries doctors make a nice living, (In Israel not so much), but is that the motivation?
When a kid comes in with a terrible disease do you say, "YES! This kid is a goldmine, I can now build that Japanese garden I have always wanted."
I certainly hope that is not the case. And for me Krav Maga is on the same level.
I do not want to be part of an organization that tries to "sell" Krav Maga as a great money making addition to your dojo or gym. I want the motivation to stem from trying to be part of the solution, trying to help people. I want the motivation to come from reading about how Shelly Dadon was murdered.
The first quality I look for in an IKI instructor is Love, Caring, Compassion. For without that you will never be a good instructor, never! This is what we are about and this is just the first of many qualities that distinguish us from the others. IKI is a different sort of Krav Maga organization.
I did not start out as a Krav Maga instructor. I worked on Wall Street. I analyzed portfolios all day and made suggestions to our brokers.
The first thing that surprised me about this job was that no value whatsoever was attached to the actual product. In other words, I recall hearing the older guys mention a certain product and I thought, yes, that is a quality product that can benefit many people. I soon found out that my thinking was way out of line.
I soon discovered that no one could care less about the actual product or its benefits, only one thing mattered and that was its value as an investment.
No one cared if this particular product benefited young mothers taking care of children, all that mattered were the quarterly returns. Quite simply, it was all about the money.
It would be nice to think that Krav Maga organizations are not this way. It would be nice to believe that they do not view Krav Maga merely as a product that can yield a high return. But yet....
I have never turned away a student for lack of money and I am richer for that.
Help us spread the word.
For information about any upcoming seminars: Holland, Germany, Australia, USA, Mexico, Puerto Rico, etc please contact Moshe Katz or the local IKI representative.
For a list of IKI Representatives world wide please see IKI Krav Maga