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A Founder's Constant State of Rejection

Hey everyone!

We've released a blog post today and we want to share - Mike Greenfield
writes about his experiences facing constant rejection as a founder<http://bit.ly/X3s2vG>
.

Check it out, and let us know your thoughts! What's your experience with
rejection as an entrepreneur, and how has that affected you?

Hayden

P.S. If you would like to help us out, give us an upvote on Hacker News<http://bit.ly/ZCjPwe>!
The post title is "A Founder's Constant State of Rejection"

26 Replies

Hayden Tay
0
0
Hayden Tay Entrepreneur
Marketing and Customer Success Manager at ChargeSpot Wireless Power

Oops, forgot to mention this, but Mike is also a member of FounderDating!
You can check out his profile here:
http://members.founderdating.com/profile/1116/mike-greenfield/?q=.

If you have a great personal story to share about your entrepreneurial
journey, email me and we might be able to feature you next!

On Tue, Nov 13, 2012 at 10:47 AM, Hayden Tay <hay...@founderdating.com>wrote:

Ricky Wong
0
0
Ricky Wong Entrepreneur
Tax consultant for Real Estate, Private Equity, and Ultra High Net-worth Individual Clients

Love the read. Whenever I sell (which is pretty much all the time..aren't
you too?) this scene <http://pinterest.com/pin/235102043018218085/> often
loops in my head :-p

On Tue, Nov 13, 2012 at 7:56 AM, Hayden Tay <hay...@founderdating.com>wrote:

Jia Jiang
0
0
Jia Jiang Entrepreneur
Entrepreneur, Author and Keynote Speaker Who Turns Rejection On Its Head

Fantastic read, Hayden.

As a founder, I constantly wrestle with the possibility of being judged/rejected in business. I know there are great sales people, politicians or entrepreneurs who can reach out to others without this fear whatsoever.

Is anyone out there who used to fear rejection, but somehow has got over that fear? If so, how?

Thanks,

Jia Jiang
Founder and CEO
Hooplus
(919) 816-5611
j...@souplus.com

On Nov 13, 2012, at 10:16 AM, Ricky Wong <rickw...@gmail.com> wrote:

Joshua Butner
0
0
Joshua Butner Entrepreneur
Founder / Partner at Vulk

Jia,

I would have to say- for me- the ultimate rule for getting over fear of rejection- in any scenario- is to know what you're presenting/selling/creating inside and out. This not only conveys your competency but also your passion about whatever 'it' is.

Secondly, I'd have to tie into my first and emphasize that you be passionate about your product/service/project and make certain that you are conveying that. People will remember your passion when they need to recall who you are. Even if their opinion of your product/service/project wasn't the greatest, your passionate presentation will leave an indelible impression.

Lastly, experience rejection. You have to know your enemy. Experiencing rejection allows you to better understand what your weaknesses may be- whether they are in your product/service/project or in your presentation. Each bit of information you learn will help you to conquer rejection. Remember: practice makes perfect.

--
Joshua Butner
mhttp://www.sparrowmailapp.com/?sig)

Clynton Caines
0
0
Clynton Caines Entrepreneur
SharePoint Developer at Discover Technologies
Great question.

First, I totally relate to Mike's article. Working for the man can often
be a torture you endure to keep the family fed. On the other hand,
"selling" your own startup can be its own special kind of hell -
especially for (us) introverts.

A mentor gave me this advice to help overcome stage-freight and
rejection-anxiety: Try to picture the complete surroundings in your mind
before any "sell" - sales call/presentation/social event/meeting/etc -
even better if you can do a quick run-through before the crowd arrives.
If they're already there, then try to give impromptu mini-pitches to
anyone who will listen - which for me, sheds nervous energy.

I can't say that I ever "got over" my fear of rejection, but I try to
always remember one thing: I am the best at what I do! See if that helps
you too...

Good luck,
Clynton

Hayden Tay
0
0
Hayden Tay Entrepreneur
Marketing and Customer Success Manager at ChargeSpot Wireless Power

This is a comment from Bravoyankee on the Hacker News post:

bravoyankee <http://news.ycombinator.com/user?id=bravoyankee> 3 hours ago |

> link <http://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=4780123>
> Rejection Therapy is a great way to get over the fear of rejection. It
> actually makes getting rejected feel triumphant. Instead of it being
> something to dread, it becomes an awesome rush.
> For those who don't know what I'm talking about:
> http://rejectiontherapy.com and the hardcore 30 day rejection therapy
> challenge: http://rejectiontherapy.com/rules/

Ricky Wong
0
0
Ricky Wong Entrepreneur
Tax consultant for Real Estate, Private Equity, and Ultra High Net-worth Individual Clients

I should probably make this into a more structured blog post, but here is a
quick 2c.

*Do you want it enough?* Most of us are smart, educated, and can find a
good paying job. We always have a plan B, but can you fight like your life
depend on it? Can you go all
in<http://ecorner.stanford.edu/authorMaterialInfo.html?mid=1568>
?

I didn't send this scene <http://pinterest.com/pin/235102043018218085/> just
for fun. Watch the movie.

Here is a frank comment. Most of us are kind of like Jerry Maguire (rich,
successful etc..and just as good looking :-p). We don't know what it's like
to hustle. We panic as soon as we're thrown into a life and death situation
and make a big drama out of it. When you watch the movie, focus on Rod
Tidwell. He is the real star IMO and knows how to hustle and stays calm.
For me, the real scene is when you see Rod's house and learned that he has
a big family to support. Rod is an athlete and he is life is over if he is
ever hurt (no education, no second career). This is his only *one shot out
of that kind of lifestyle*. Jerry Maguire is more like a VC who gets to bet
on multiple players. Even the whole inciting incident of the movie of him
writing a "mission statement" is mocking his naivety (not to offend any
folks working on social entrepreneurship, but commenting on the movie in
general).

*Do you have something to sell?* Rod laughs at Jerry at the end (in the
scene linked) because he had nothing to offer. Rod went all in on him and
Jerry didn't bring in any contract. From Rod's point of view, Jerry Maguire
is just some rich boy complaining because he has to take some real risk for
the first time in his life. This is too long to write a in an email
(perhaps a post some other time), but one way to *pass the "let's get real"
test* is to ask if someone offered you the same product would you buy it?
i.e. if it's NOT a startup opportunity, but a real, equivalent product
already exist would you buy it? How would you justify your price in terms
of revenue/profit increase (preferred) or very measurable cost saving.

Finally, to expand on the numbers game, it's important to *think in terms
of pipelines and channels*. You should be building that all the time and
always *moving people forward in the purchasing cycle* (another movie scene
for you haha <http://pinterest.com/pin/235102043018618634/>). Depends on
the kind of selling you're doing at the moment, you hopefully have an
intuitive sense of where your bottlenecks are (e.g. leads going into the
funnel vs closing and anything in between) so that you can work on them
individually.

If anyone is interested in the subject of sales here are some good
books<http://blog.rickykinwong.com/2012/07/sales-and-top-books.html>
on
my blog. My startup has also linked some sales books together so if you're
interested in how different sales people think on various topics you can
check them out here <http://mobnotate.com/bib.html>. Oh, btw, if anyone
knows a good NLP/ML or sales people in publishing let me know :-p

--Ricky

Nick Pontacoloni
1
0
Nick Pontacoloni Entrepreneur
Online Media Sales and Marketing

I've been in direct sales my entire career from selling credit card processing door to door to multi-million dollar advertising deals.

Here are two things that have helped me conquer the fear of rejection:

1) The Law of Averages

2) Separating the I from the O

1) The law of averages is something to always keep in mind in every selling situation. Simply, the more times you pitch, the more times someone will buy. Your average can be 1 out of 20 (great) or 1 out if 100, but no matter what, there is a direct correlation between the number of pitches you make and the the number of deals you secure. As you mature and learn from experience your batting average goes down, but no matter what there will always be a 1 to many correlation. Accepting that and knowing that every pitch gets you closer to a deal is motivating. The more times you get rejected, the closer you become to securing a deal. It's a law for a reason.

2) In business you have to separate your individual life, personality, fears and inhibitions from your professional life. No one typically rejects you as a person. They may reject your idea, stage, revenue model, customer base or general market. Try hard to separate your I-Individual from your O- Organization. You will always have friends and family who believe in the individual. The organization should always be second to family and health. Let people reject your organization and don't take it personal. Accept the feedback, learn from it and pivot if necessary. Its not about you personally.

On Nov 13, 2012, at 5:22 PM, Jia Jiang <j...@souplus.com> wrote:

Jia Jiang
0
0
Jia Jiang Entrepreneur
Entrepreneur, Author and Keynote Speaker Who Turns Rejection On Its Head

Thanks everyone for sharing some really good points.

Hayden, this Rejection Therapy idea is fantastic. I want to give it a shot and have some fun!

Now, if the aim is to make a crazy request and get rejected by someone everyday, and thus desensitize oneself from the pain, what are some of the requests you can think of?

Jia Jiang
Blog: Entresting.com
Company: Hooplus.com
(919) 816-5611
j...@souplus.com

On Nov 14, 2012, at 12:26 AM, OwnerAide <n...@owneraide.com> wrote:

Jia Jiang
0
0
Jia Jiang Entrepreneur
Entrepreneur, Author and Keynote Speaker Who Turns Rejection On Its Head

I liked the idea of Rejection Therapy so much that I started doing it right away.

I plan to do this for 100 days, and blog it here to force myself through the whole process. It's been two days, and I am absolutely loving it!

http://www.entresting.com/blog/100-days-of-rejection-therapy/

If you have any suggestions, do let me know.

Jia Jiang
Company: hooplus.com
Blog: entresting.com
Twitter: @jiajiang
j...@souplus.com

On Nov 14, 2012, at 1:14 PM, Jia Jiang <j...@souplus.com> wrote:

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