|hmmm, how do get more students through my door?|
I was surging martial art websites the other day and stumbled across one that just got under my skin. It was sweet site; professionally developed, custom graphics, flash- everything a large and commercial school needs.
There was a link for the rank requirements and I clicked on it. I am always curious to see what other schools require at different ranks and wanted to see what theirs were. I was looking at the Jr. ranks (kids) since I teach kids as well. They had the basics: know a self defense technique, understand basic dojo etiquette, and a couple fitness requirements. Then there was this:
Support your dojo: Bring in one friend to watch or try karate.
In the words of Hannah Montana: youwantmetomarketyourschool say what? Don’t get me wrong, I am all for making a living teaching martial arts. Who doesn’t want to get paid for doing something they love? If I thought I could pull it off, I would. But martial arts is a very competitive market these days; there is a school on every street corner. So I understand needing to market. I understand needing to be creative. I get all that. But I have a major issue with making it a requirement for rank promotion that your students market for you.
Exactly how does bringing a friend to class demonstrate your skills in the martial arts? Rank promotion should be based on your development as a martial artist, not as a marketing tool for your instructor. After all, you are already PAYING for your instruction. You are paying to learn the art, and your promotion requirements should be based on what you are being taught. In essence, at this school, you have the privilege of paying to do recruitment as well.
Gordon Gekko would be proud.