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How to handle rejection and learn to move on

Rejection by itself is not that scary. What is scarier is the fear of rejection. This fear holds back many entrepreneurs and disturbs their businesses. One of the most popular personal qualities every entrepreneur must have is the skill: “To be able to take rejection.”

Facts are facts. Presumably there is not even one entrepreneur who hasn’t faced rejection. Many of the most popular companies nowadays have been rejected hundreds of times. If you break down and give up after the first investor says “No!”, then your idea will never become successful and you will never be able to achieve what you want to achieve.

Fear of rejection can discourage you to act and without action there is no reaction – no negative outcome, but no positive outcome as well. Before you even start working on your idea get mentally prepared to face many disappointments, refusals and rejections. It can be harsh, but failure has to make you stronger, more motivated and inspired.

Be prepared.

Get ready to be rejected, but do not approach your investors with the fear of it. Approach them with all the passion and belief that you have in your company and yourself and make sure that you present your ideas in the best possible way. Be ready to get rejected, but look at the possibility of rejection as a stepping stone which will help you climb even higher and become better for the next investors meeting.

Understand the rejection.

Try to understand what went wrong and why you have got rejected. Instead of losing your spirits and confidence better focus on the reasons for your rejection. When you speak with investors you are trying to attract their trust by taking some of their time in the attempt to receive funding. The reasons for your rejection in particular might not be in you and your business. It is conceivable that the investors are just looking for something different. This is why you need to…

Ask questions and analyze the answers.

As an entrepreneur you most likely have mastered your communication and networking skills, so you are probably comfortable with asking questions and looking for feedback. In open conversation, ask why you have been rejected and carefully listen to the critique you will get. You will be surprised by the reasons. Sometimes they don’t have much to do with the whole idea, the execution of it or any other aspect of your business. Collect all the information and analyze it carefully.

Take notes.

Write down all the conclusions that you have reached to. Create a list of what you have learned from this rejection and form another list with ways to avoid the same mistakes. Do changes in your approach, but do not mislay the main idea and vision of your company.

Sleep on it.

Take enough time to rethink the rejection. Do not get obsessed with it. A day, maximum two, is enough to get everything that you need from this experience and to move on. Do not waste your valuable time and do not lose your focus on your business, better get up, get ready and get out there again.

Analyze the set of rejections.

In your mind go over all the rejections and connect them by their common key points. If you see a trend of specific comments, consider a change that will eliminate that group of problematic aspects. You can learn a lot from rejection if you look at it as source of inspiration and a way to grow.

Don’t take every rejection as a final defeat because it simply is not. Go on with your idea, as far as you believe in it and have passion and trust for it.

07 November 2014

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