How do you handle rejection in business?

We all know rejection can be hard to handle and in services such as mine, where the open minded can see the benefits that a good coach can bring but less forward thinking/planning individuals cannot, I look at rejection as an element of moving forward and especially where people don’t really understand the benefits on offer.

You can’t avoid rejection whether it be in relationships, life or work but the positive is that it helps with development and self-education as you identify areas for adaptation and change.

More often than not though, it is the feeling that affects our emotions and emotions aren’t logical, so let’s put some rationality into the equation.

  1. Don’t take it personally – ‘Personally’ is an emotional state and often rejection makes us feel as if it is ourselves that is under attack. Self-doubt creeps in, ‘How could I have presented it better?’, ‘What went wrong?’, ‘Why didn’t they like me?’

Now look at it differently – what was it about the proposal/idea that was rejected?

Frequently it’s not about the person but the offering that is being rejected yet we apply rejection to our thoughts and they in turn connect to emotions! It’s often a simple case that what is being proposed doesn’t meet the criteria so take yourself out of the equation and then re-assess the situation.

  1. Focus on control – Those with Internal Focus believe they have control over what happens in their lives. Those with External Focus believe it’s others, chance or even fate that have control. So decide whether you will allow others to influence the way you feel or take control of it yourself.

This may sound a tad harsh but maybe it needs to be said to ourselves!

  1. Learn – Look at this logically and learn from the rejection. Whether it was simply a case of the presentation could have been better or not matching the recipient’s needs etc., gather ‘facts’.

If you can establish what the reason was (removing emotion!) for the rejection, you will be able to improve thereafter. Carry out a self-analysis of areas you believe contributed to the rejection.

Better still, don’t make assumptions, ask! Make it clear you have accepted the rejection but in wishing to learn from this experience ask what didn’t work for them. You may be surprised to find out how freely the recipient will be in giving you this information (if you’re willing to ask).

I have been dumbfounded on occasions with reasons that I simply wouldn’t have even considered. I have certainly been educated in not to assume!

In business, rejection is part of day to day activities. Your resilience to deal with it, learn from it and take action on your new found knowledge is the key.

As that old expression goes, you can please some of the people some of the time… so it’s not all about you as a person but more likely a mismatch between what or how you are making the offering and not an assault on you or your emotions!

Coaching to Success helps you find yourself, give support and offers clarity to what you are aiming to achieve with the means of getting there. For further information, simply call Neil on 07761 187238 or email for an informal conversation to see how we can help increase your Locus of control or other matters concerning business development.

Having read this and got this far, why not check out Neil too by watching our YouTube video HERE.