Hollow and Empty

December 27, 2010 § Leave a comment

“Hi Coach, it has been a while,” Jake said.

“Hello Jake,” I replied. “What brings you here?”

“Just want to reconnect,” Jake said. “And to tell you a story then ask a question.”

“Let’s hear it.”

“I went around learning on my own as you said I should,” Jake said.  “However, there are some things that bothered me.”

“Go on.”

“I listened to some speakers and attended events like product launches, opening ceremonies,” Jake said. “You know, events that tell people of the next big thing.”

“So?”

“I felt like a lot of them were crap,” Jake said.

“Are you sure that you are not just being sarcastic or too critical,” I asked.

“No,” Jake replied, ” I gave an open mind.  I was even excited about most of the events.”

“But?”

“But it felt empty or hallow,” Jake said. “There was nothing there.”

“There was nothing there?”

“Is there something wrong with me, coach?” Jake asked.

“Maybe,” I said, “or maybe not.”

“Say something coach.”

“Organizers of such events find ways to induce or ballyhoo the product or event,” I said.

“I’m still listening,” Jake beckoned me to continue.

“The marketers, the performers, the speakers, the stage managers, the players, the producers, the manufacturers, have all seen its power,” I said. “That is why they keep using it.”

“And why do some focus so much on how good their company is like it matters to us?” Jake said.

“It does matter,” I corrected him.

“But shouldn’t the focus be more on the customer value?”

“Yes,” I said. “It is an old marketing strategy to announce yourself as number one. Or, to emphasize what good things are happening to them.”

“Like you said, it is an old strategy that may not be so good now,” Jake replied.

“Some companies wake up and begin to focus on real value,” I said. “But others continue to hype what is not really there.”

“But not everyone is naive,” Jake replied. “The deep thinkers, the sound, the ones who take a step back and observe, those who look for value, will always feel hollow and empty.”

“You may no longer be as naive, Jake.  For that, I am happy,” I said.  “But liars thrive because, as they say, a sucker is born everyday.”

“What?”

“There are people who are gullible as long as it feeds their emotion,” I said.

“This is troubling.”

“But,” I said, “people grow smart. They grow up.  They stop sucking everything up and start thinking at a higher plane.”

“Does that include me?” Jake asked.

“Be a good critique of others, even me, and even you,” I said. “But the real lesson for you here is, never hype what is not there.  Only excite people with the value that is really there, the one that benefits them.”

“Yes coach,” Jake said.  “Do I see you next week?”

“No,” I said, “keep learning on your own.”

© Eduardo R. Pilapil Jr. 2010-2011

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