Rocky Balboa — An Example of Going “Old School”

Admittedly, I’m a Rocky Balboa fan.  =) I love everything about these movies… from the David / Goliath -type of battles, to the story BEHIND the movie for Sylvester Stallone, to the romantic undercurrent in each, to the hard-work-pays-off lessons, to the patriotic theme that screams “ALL THINGS ARE POSSIBLE.”  Don’t get me started!

Anyway, I also love this theme of simplicity + strength that’s present throughout each storyline.  If you pay attention to the TRAINING SCENES in any Rocky movie, you’ll notice something that is profound:

When he WINS,  his training scenes are depicted as “old school”… going back to the basics… nothing fancy, automated or “bought”.  And they contrast his training scenes with his opponent’s, which are often more “evolved”.  (Think about how the Russian fighter trained, with all of that fancy equipment vs. how Rocky trained by running in the snow, and using logs as weights, etc.)  Every time they depict training scenes in THIS WAY, Rocky wins the fight.

But, when — an example is when he first fought Mr. T — Rocky leaves his old school ways to train in front of the media… when he abandons a dirty weight room for a finished training room that “looks good”… he loses.  (And, a special note:   when Rocky’s training scenes are depicted as more “evolved”, his opponent is undoubtedly shown training in “old school” ways.)

What’s this got to do with business?  MUCH of what I do, teach and speak about is undoubtedly old school.  While I am not archaic  enough to abandon new media or new digital opportunities entirely, I am also not foolish enough to depend upon them.  My success comes from building a business whose marketing and sales foundation is most certainly built upon the basics:

  • Conversations.
  • Invitations.
  • Connection.

Many have criticized my way of doing business as “old school.”  And that’s okay.  I call my “archaic” strategies “TRUTH”… Because  they work —  regardless of the year, the economy, your industry, or any other variable you could claim.  Let your COMPETITORS write checks for bright shiny objects… while YOU cash checks by doing what far too many have abandoned as  “old school”…

HERE’s to having the eye of the tiger…. =)

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  1. says

    This is an outstanding post. I’ve always admired the candid tone of your blog. In the sweets industry baking from scratch is considered “old school” and in my book the only way to go when taking care of the needs of my clients. The basics are what acclimated me to where I am in my entrepreneurial ventures. I always passionately advocate remaining a student of my profession. Having the ‘basics’ serve as a foundation in your respective industry is a must. Thank you for sharing with us!

  2. says

    This is a really unique comparison. It is important to understand and use the new tools while not forgetting the foundation of our make up. As you pointed out with your 3 bullets (Conversations, Invitations & Connection), we often miss out on the fact that we must incorporate the old with new in order to be successful.

    Thanks for bringing this point across and re-posting it to Twitter!

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