Saturday, October 13, 2012

Please Pass the Yes-Butter

Curiously, my last post on my statistics blog was six lessons I had learned about business from martial arts. Today's is what I learned about martial arts from business.

Photo courtesy of Hans Gutknecht

I was talking about someone I worked with and my niece, Samantha, exclaimed,

"Yes, butter!"

I thought perhaps this was a new kind of spread, like apple butter. I like apple butter just as well as the next person, probably more.

Samantha explained,

"No, that person is a 'yes-butter'. You know, the kind of person who when you give them an answer to a problem, they immediately come back with, 'Yes, but'".

The examples we were talking about came from work. One person could not find a reference source for a grant we were supposed to be doing. It was not in the university library and could not be received from inter-library loan before the deadline. Helpful person that I am, I sent a link to a source where it could be read on-line. The person emailed me back,

"Yes, but that won't work for me because I need to be able to high-light what I read."

Now, if you are reading this don't even start with explaining that you can print it off and then high-light it or that you could copy and paste it into Word and high-light it on line. No, because these people always come back with,

"Yes, but I don't have a printer"

Or some other excuse. The appropriate answer is,

"Are you fucking kidding me? I told you how to get it immediately and for free and you still have a problem?"

The same is true of judo and other martial arts. Often people will ask me how they can get better and my answer is,
"Practice more often. Practice harder and with better people."

They will respond,
"Yes, but my club only works out two days a week and I am the baddest, toughest, mojo-est person there."

My answer is,
"Then practice at other other clubs." 

To which they respond,
"Yes, but I don't know which clubs would be best."

My answer is to give them the names and addresses of some clubs I could highly recommend. To which  they respond,

"Yes, but my only free time between work, my current club, my toenail polishing lessons and Vampire Diaries is on Tuesdays from 2 to 3 a.m."

Samantha (wise beyond her years), commented,
"It's like a saying I heard. If you want it bad enough you'll find a way. If not, you'll find an excuse."

What many people want is not an answer. They want magic. They want to know how they can get better results without doing anything differently. From now on, when someone asks me how they can get better at martial arts I'm going to say,

"Just buy our book, Winning on the Ground and read it. You don't even need to read it. Just buy it and you'll be better. It's magic."


Anonymous said...

I one hundred percent agree with this entry. It drives me crazy that so many people just don't just handle it...

Unknown said...

Wonderful post! (Both of them...) Any word on when your book will be out? Sounds like a great Christmas gift to give and receive.

Dr. AnnMaria said...

Don't know about the publication date. We had to re-shoot three techniques and finished the last yesterday. We just sent in photos for the author bios so I *hope* it is getting close

Unknown said...

Thanks for the update. Getting a book published can be highly frustrating - with minor matters dominating! Good luck! And I'm looking forward to trying today's jujitsu gatame tip!

Anonymous said...

thanks for sharing.