The Making of Ronin: Introduction (Case Study: Ronan #1)


This introduction summarizes the basic ideas behind the training of a Ronin. The short version of all explanations helps us arrive at our main points much faster though it may seem important details are being skipped. Anyone with interest in such details ought to follow up on their own.
The word Ronin is borrowed from the Japanese language because the training process explained is originally a Japanese executive training. Ronin is a Samurai without a master. The system of training was originally developed in Japan for specific purposes that are not exactly the same as the purposes for the American version. The American version is designed to train a qualified businessperson to develop very important qualities for a successful entrepreneur. The Samurai system required a Samurai to be employed by a master who obviously had need of the Samurai skills, for one’s estate needs, and was able to maintain and compensate the Samurai. Samurai is a skilled and trained professional security person. Ronin is a Samurai by all means except that it is not retained by a feudal master thus not being maintained and compensated automatically. This lack of sponsorship was a serious problem at that era. The Ronin had no choice but to maintain and compensate himself by all possible means.
The training system basically begins by qualifying the individual as having the potential for such rigorous training. The original system is Japanese but what is taught domestically for American businesspersons has American objectives. If a person is qualified, that person is recruited to attend hands-on training by working as a tradeshow attendant for three to six months. The experience of tradeshow attendance is managed to resemble the real-life experiences of a Ronin. The successful graduate of this program will be able to undertake business ventures and succeed beyond the abilities of ordinary businesspersons. Ronin training is one of the most advanced trainings for business executive positions and only those qualified may undergo such training. The rate of failure can be very high unless the strongest candidates with the best potential are selected and everyone else is denied the opportunity. A candidate is usually employed by a firm or directed as such to enter the program if qualified. The expectation is that after about six months of hands-on training, the person will be extremely qualified for handling of unavoidable business situations that an ordinary person is unable to handle. The sponsoring firm usually pays an initial fee to the training body and the candidate is compensated as a traditional tradeshow attendant while undergoing the process.
In US, a typical businessperson who has advanced in a career will develop many business skills that require time and ability. This person is by nature employed by a firm such as a corporation. This employer functions as the feudal master. The businessperson is a skilled person and his business skills are needed for the affairs of the employer for which the businessperson is maintained and compensated. The businessperson is the modern day Samurai without being a warrior. The skills fall in the realm of business but business is a world of action as military is by design. The businessperson who is not employed by such employer as a firm or corporation but does have the necessary skills can become employed as such or enter business on one’s own. If the businessperson is employed by the firm or corporation for the skills in return for maintenance and compensation, that person is similar to a Samurai in a feudal system. If the businessperson is not, the worst possible scenario is that this businessperson has to survive and succeeded as a Ronin did. Ronin was the worst case scenario for a Samurai.
One of the worst possible things a Samurai could come across was a Ronin. Traditionally, some Samurai were trained to think as Ronin did in order to become stronger and more cunning. The typical trainee would be carried to a hostile and unknown area. This usually would be within the realm of a hostile feudal lord. The candidate would be abandoned with no food, water and only weaponry to make one’s way back home. This return depended on the ability to survive and finding one’s way back. The trainee was unable to determine his location and any locals he could come in contact with were interested in killing him so no directions were available. Food and water were also important issues. The experience of overcoming these challenges enabled this Samurai to think and understand Ronin. Ronin has several advantages over a traditional Samurai by being desperate and having been forced to find ways to tolerate a Ronin’s life and knowing how to handle many difficult situations. The Samurai had to learn to think as Ronin did to be able to match him. The American tradeshow training aims at enabling a qualified businessperson to feel and think as Ronin did. If a person can achieve this, one can handle many unrealistic business situations successfully and since nobody else can handle them, this person will be financially far ahead of the competition.
Many metaphors can be used to define Ronin within its original system. The training process is designed so the successful graduate can think and act as Ronin does. The development of this mindset has to be a natural process and entails much hardship. Ronin training is based on a specialized military training and is too hard for almost everyone. Only a person who graduates the process can understand Ronin. External views of the process only provide some insights.
One metaphor for defining Ronin is that of Ronin as a stray dog. Imagine you are a dog that has no owner. You have to sleep anywhere and eat anything. You can roam the city, or wherever you are but everything is carefully watched. Many other dogs live in the city but they all have owners who keep and feed them in exchange for being a house dog. The stray dog has no owner and the first option is to find an owner. If successful, it is no longer a stray dog but if not, it has to live as a stray dog. In a pre-industrialized society, everything has value and resources are limited. This simply means no food in the trash. Stray dog has to look for food everyday and if lucky will find some. That important point is the stray dog will have to walk and roam endlessly and may find no food on day one, and no food on day two and so on. It may go days without food and that is of no importance to anyone in the universe except that stray dog. The eventual consequence is by experience the stray dog learns to think as a stray dog does and not just any dog or a house dog. The stray dog KNOWS and UNDERSTANDS that in its world no food or shelter exists. If it is to get any, it has to get it on its own and by its own means. The most possible scenario is the stray dog learns to steal food from other dogs. It also learns to battle with the other dogs and win or no food. It is important to remember there are no break times or rest times for the stray dog. It has to function with all its being and succeed just to survive. Once it succeeds, that is a very temporary situation and soon it has to do it again to survive. That is the life of a stray dog. The stray dog is more intelligent, alert, capable, and stronger than any dog. The stray dog that cannot get the job done is dead. The stray dog experiences harsh realities of life 100%. Ronin is a stray dog.
Ronin has no master thus no source of revenue. Ronin has to face life as the stray dog did. The city or other location will have people and the Samurai will be employed by them. Ronin will get no food nor shelter in such world. If Ronin finds a master, he becomes a Samurai. If Ronin has no master, Ronin has no food or shelter. Ronin has to survive. The most likely path is that of a road thief. Ronin, much like the stray dog, has to learn to steal his food to survive. Ronin knows that almost anyone he comes across on the road will be armed and qualified to fight him. Ronin cannot just take what it needs, he will be 100% confronted and escape is not an option because the traveler will chase him until Ronin is killed or is so lucky he escapes. Ronin has to fight like the stray dog and win or no food or shelter. Losing is not an option. There are no break times or rest times for Ronin. He needs food and shelter and needs to get it or die. The successful Ronin learns to be more intelligent, alert, capable and stronger than any Samurai. The Ronin that cannot get the job done is dead. Ronin experiences harsh realities of life 100%. The entrepreneur is a Ronin.
An entrepreneur chooses not to have a master. This person has to learn to deal with many situations in business but will always run into other businesspeople that are employed by others or work on their own and will keep the entrepreneur from the prize. If entrepreneur gets no business, it is no longer in business and is no entrepreneur. Entrepreneur does not work for a firm or corporation to be maintained and compensated. Entrepreneur has to find its own business to survive in business. The people who own businesses will not give the entrepreneur anything. The people who are hired by these businesses will battle and compete with the entrepreneur and its employees for whatever business there may be. The entrepreneur has to learn to think ahead of the competition that also have more resources and manpower. The entrepreneur has to win the fight every time or is gone. Losing is not an option. The entrepreneur has to fight like to stray dog or Ronin and win or no business. There are no break times or rest times for the entrepreneur. The successful entrepreneur learns to be more intelligent, alert, capable and stronger than any businessperson. The entrepreneur that cannot get the job done is finished. Entrepreneur experiences harsh realities of business 100%. The entrepreneur is a Ronin.
Ronin training requires the entrepreneur (or other qualified businessperson) to experience life as Ronin. Tradeshow attending has proven to be one such course that proves effective. Tradeshows require travel from cities to cities. They are long, boring, tedious, abusive, threatening, unrewarding and ungodly experiences. The travel, the packing of the show, the unpacking of the show, the long hours, the cold experiences and everything else drains the candidate slowly. The candidate will become accustomed to the harsh lifestyle slowly and learns to think ahead of the game. He learns to see the world differently. He is the stray dog. He will get no business while competing with so many other businesses doing the same thing at the tradeshow. He is there to die unless he learns to survive and get the business against everyone. He learns to think as stray dog or Ronin. He learns to tolerate the hardships and just fight to get what is his. Nobody will give him a dollar of business and the only way is by fighting for the business with the rest of them. They are all good or gone and he has to beat them to get anything. This process becomes a way of seeing business and getting business. The first step is the entrepreneur will always be tired beyond all belief as Ronin and stray dog were in their merciless realms. Once he accepts that as normal, he realizes the only way to get any business is by fighting with the others. He has to learn to be better, smarter, more alert, more intelligent, stronger and more capable than the other tradeshow attendants or forget everything. No alternatives exist. He either wins the fight in spite of how tired and beat one is or he is out of business.
This is the training of Ronin and requires a structured environment. Tradeshow have proven to be effective for such training in the US and what brought them to positive attention is Hollywood finds this training essential for their best. Hollywood has nothing for anyone. Hollywood does not exist. Whatever is out there is created by the people who make them. They have to be qualified and they have to get everything from the money to other resources to create. The problem is nothing is available and they have to compete with many others who want the little that is available. The big companies and established people own and control all resources. One has to be able to fight and win or nothing. No alternatives exist. The game is fixed and no resources exist unless one fights and wins. The stray dog and Ronin have the same problem. The established ones own everything and guard them. The only way to get anything is by fighting and getting and one has to be better than the competition. This was the tale of Ronin training and its details.

*This post belongs to this week’s edition of Wine by Cush Magazine blog and published early in World of Cush also.

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