A "Shoe Story"

Another marketing story.

If you have already heard of this, do bear with me - or take this as a reminder or "refresher" if you can. For many who have not heard of this, here goes:

A very successful shoe Company, many aeons ago, having established itself in its home market, decided to venture abroad. The first potential and lucrative market that came into the CEO's mind was the  people in the third world countries.

So the CEO decided to send one of its senior Managers into a Country in the Africa continent. The Manager, after having many hours of flight, finally landed at the country's airport. He stepped out of the airport and made his way to the hotel. Along the way, as he travelled in the taxi, passing through the villages, he saw many people along the way. As he was a "shoe salesman", his eyes were fixed at the many feet that passed by him.

To his dismay many were without shoes. They were barefooted! If any were not, they were in simple, "torn" and crude "shoe-wares" made from local natural materials. He was disappointed!

On reaching the Hotel, he unloaded his luggage, and immediately went to the telegraph office and sent a telex (those days fax, emails or mobile phones were unheard of) to his boss:  "Boss. Landed safely. Many people here. Disappointed. No market for shoes as many do not wear shoes!" The Boss responded: "Please come home".

As months passed, the Boss was restless and decided to send another Manager for a second opinion. The second Manager landed and was very excited on arrival to the Country. He observed what the first Manager observed. Quickly, he sent a telex to his boss: "Boss. Arrived safely. Very excited. Big market for shoes here as many did not have shoes"! And , as they said, the rest is now history as the Company was able to make great success out of the Country concerned. The Company became a market leader for its brand of shoes in later years.

In conclusion: Same scenario BUT different perceptions and therefore different opportunities from 2 individuals from the same Company. Thus, we must learn to "see" opportunities under adverse or seemingly unfavourable market conditions. There is always a silver lining in every dark clouds! Never say "no" or come to a conclusion immediately! Opportunity awaits!

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