There’s a saying in Japan: “customer is God.” And really, that’s how it goes in Japan. No tip services what so ever. Try to tip in Japan and you get the “what are you doing?” face. Employees in service work the hourly wage; nothing more. Here in America, we have tips in the service industry. You go to a restaurant; you tip the regular 15-20%. When a waiter does an exceptional job, you feel obligated to contribute more. “Oh, he/she is doing a wonderful job, I’m going to give him/her more tip.” This mentality does NOT exist in Japan. Knowing this, you would think that service is poor in Japan, right? Well, in my experience and I am NOT pushing my beliefs onto others, I feel that the service in Japan is far better. Again, I am NOT pushing my beliefs onto others and these are just based on my experience. I have gone to Japan over 20 times and have a deep understanding of the culture (yes, I am Japanese if you haven’t noticed hah).

I started brainstorming why this can be. You would think that the service would be better in a country where there’s incentive (ex. more tip, more incentive to work harder). Now, if this isn’t the case, what’s the difference? And I believe it stems back to PRINCIPLE. When something is instilled in you early on, it usually sticks. For example, every summer I went back to Japan to be with my grandparents. From there, I learned to respect elders and never talk back. Principle.

I apply this same principle to training. Personal training is in the line of service. I treat clients as if they were my mother. I think of it as a client as somebody’s mother/father/daughter/son and I must give them my utmost attention. I’m not going to treat them any different if they were younger. Keeping this principle in mind has allowed me to be consistent in my service. There will be times when new people want to try training. I have known trainers that have half-assed (pardon my language) their session because they knew they weren’t going to sign up a client. I cringe when I see this. What if that client was your mother? I would go bonkers. And that’s the issue with service in general. At times, when there’s no incentive to work harder, then people stop trying. I can say that personal training does fit in that category as well. That’s why I have to keep reminding myself and tell others that “okyakusama wa kamisama desu (customer is God).” You never know who that person knows and who they are tied with. All in all, its just a matter of just staying focused and continue to perfect your craft. Hope you liked this week’s blog, stay tuned for more next week………………………Kei

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