Everybody has a different pain threshold but I think it is safe to say that everybody struggles to deal with rejection and lack of responsiveness from others. As business owners, every day brings it own share of joyful interactions, successes and sometimes unwelcome uncomfortable lessons. The lessons we learn in business can be so difficult that they can sometimes throw us off course a bit or even lead us down a not so pleasant, dark and treacherous path to negativity and self doubt.
Everybody experiences episodes of light and darkness in business, the key is to keep your perspective and see them as lessons that are needed to develop us and challenge us to step up to the next level of accountability and success in our businesses.
Below I wanted to share how I deal with rejection and silence – 2 key challenges in business. My aim is to offer encouragement knowing that you are not alone in your challenges. Next time you experience these lessons take a deep breath, apply the two tips below,learn what you need to learn from the experience and move on.
This is how I’ve been dealing with these challenges.
1. Dealing with rejection - Rejection and hearing NO are part and parcel of business. Not everybody is going to do business with you because not everybody is your ideal client [Mental note to self!].
The best way to handle the BIG NO and any other form of subtle rejection (a “Maybe”,” in a few months” etc all mean NO!) is to pre-qualify for your sales conversation. You can do this by developing rapport, trust and educating them about you and your business before getting into any uncomfortable sales conversation. The rejection pill is quite a difficult one to swallow but ask any successful business owner, author, leader etc and you’ll be surprised how many knocks they’ve taken over the years and are still standing. It should take more than a mere two letter word to get you doubting yourself. Remember, rejection is simply your cue to move on to your next item!
2. Dealing with silence - Everbody you meet is pretty much facing the same challenges you are facing. They are fighting information overload and are overwhelmed by their task lists. Inadvertently they forget to follow up on non-pressing emails or phone calls – same as you do when people contact you with non-presssing stuff . So don’t take silence to an email, phone call or letter as rejection. Just schedule a follow up in your dairy and gently remind them that you are waiting for a response. You will be amazed how many people respond with an apology and proceed to act on your request. Just put yourself in their shoes and you’ll be more understanding next time you are faced with silence.
If you do get a NO on following up then go back to point 1: its just your cue to move on to your next item!