Overcoming your fear of rejection can be the hardest part about becoming an entrepreneur. It’s all about you gaining clients after all, isn’t it?
I used to be afraid of it. Lately though, I seem to be getting better at putting myself out there and overcoming rejection – or at least my fear of it!
I’ve been working on building my online business presence (the writing, etc) and recently approached someone and basically told him he needed to hire me.
Ballsy, huh? Here’s the story of how it happened…
I’ve been wanting to try out some VA work (virtual assisting work for those of you not in the know) for awhile now, but wasn’t sure how to break into that space. I wasn’t interested in going the Elance or oDesk route, because frankly they just don’t pay enough.
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Putting Myself Out There
So I took the advice of a man wiser than I and decided to position myself as invaluable to someone I followed and respected. Basically through our correspondence I figured out someone I followed was having trouble keeping up with his email inbox.
I decided to take a chance and bring this to his attention (politely) and see if he was interested in hiring a VA. I lucked out – he was. I told him what I could do for him and he asked me what I charged.
Bidding – Not Too High or Too Low
I worked with my mentor to figure out a reasonable fee – I didn’t want to charge too high and not get hired, but I wanted to make sure it was worth my time. She helped me to come up with a game plan that worked.
I pitched, he accepted and a new relationship was born. We decided on a two week trial and so far, so good. I’m very type-A, so email management is definitely my cup o’ tea!
He Could Have Said No
I lucked out in this is the first person that I approached about VA work. I put myself out there (which I think is easier for me personally with email) and took a chance that the need I was identifying was enough of a pain point for him to want to take action. I was right and positioned myself correctly to solve his problem.
He could have said no though. That would have been okay. I bet I’ve pitched a hundred writing jobs over the past few months and obviously they haven’t all said yes. Some don’t reply at all and others have told me flat out no. Others I’ve said no thank you to, as we haven’t been able to agree on mutually beneficial terms (i.e. they couldn’t afford me).
Not Taking It Personally
One of my biggest growth areas through this process of emerging myself in the freelance world, is learning how to not take rejection personally. Every writing gig (or VA job) isn’t going to be the right fit – for me or the person I’d contract with.
That’s okay! The more I put myself out there – the more I pitch – the more successful I’ll be. I’ve got the gigs to back it up now too! I may have been lucky in some cases, but I believe that putting myself out there more times than not, my writing skill set (portfolio) and my actual pitch have been what’s made the most impact.
Don’t let fear of rejection keep you from putting yourself out there and hustling towards your goals or dreams. Instead, position yourself to be a solution when your prospective client needs it the most, ask for the work and follow-up/follow through.
Work on your pitch, pitch early and pitch often. Believe in yourself and realize your batting average will get better with time! You can do this. And remember – don’t take it personally!
How are you at handling rejection? Does your fear of it keep you from trying?
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