Lessons from Black Friday

  • Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Black Friday has come and gone. It is becoming more celebrated than Thanksgiving itself.
Many people are thankful for Thanksgiving because Thanksgiving has given them Black Friday. It is amazing how we start out celebrating one thing and after a while the secondary event takes over and up stages the primary event.                                                                                                               
I think that there is some value to Black Friday apart from the bargain prices that consumers enjoy, and the enormous sales generated by major retailers. These are some of the benefits as I see them.                                                                                                                                                
You get a lot of exercise. Trying to navigate through the crowds is not an easy task. You are pushed and pulled and bounced, and it becomes an athletic feat to negotiate your way through the crowds.
I saw some people who after a few minutes looked as tired as if they had been working all day. But exercise is good for the body.                                                                                         
Closely aligned to the above is that this activity helps you to sweat. And as you know sweat is good for the body. It was amazing that with the temperature what it was so many people were sweating as if they had been in the sun. My guess is that this might be the only time of the year that some people actually do something to make them sweat. Thanks to Black Friday.                   
Closely aligned to the last two is the fact that you learn self defense. With items being thrown everywhere, with shopping carts in abundance and people using them not just to carry things but as a means of protection and a deadly weapon, there are bound to be accidents, especially with people not paying attention or trying to look everywhere at the same time. It was treacherous. I saw someone use their buggy to knock over another person.
I saw people fall trying to get out of other people’s way. 
You get to laugh and laughter is the best medicine. It cost nothing. There is no hangover you experience and it is very healthy.
I saw a video of shoppers in a certain store when it was time for them to grab items that were on sale. It was amazing. There was one old lady in the crowd who made me redefine what old is and what the old can do.
The shouts and screams, the things people said and did. Things flying all over the place, and of course the back and forth conversations taking place. There was the ecstasy of victory and the agony of defeat as some people found what they wanted and some didn’t. The look of disappointment on some faces and the thrill of victory as some people actually raised their hands in triumph when they got what they wanted as if they had won an Olympic gold medal.                                                          
You also learn to plan. In order to get all the things you want you have to have a system. I found out that you cannot go to the store alone. You have to have people strategically placed at different points, plus you have to have some “spares” in case anyone gets into trouble they can act as backups.
 Finally you can learn lessons in marketing. If the item or activity is priced right and in demand people will do almost anything and endure almost any inconvenience to get whatever you are selling.
It left me wondering where people got all this money from, why one person needs five crock pots, and how is it that some people can’t make it to church on Sunday but they can endure the cold, miss their sleep and get to the store on time in order to get a bargain.

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