Do you have a problem when people tell you “no”? You might consider it a “No problem” (a problem with the word no), but I can tell you it’s really no problem (the absence of any problem at all).
I published a post over at BigYellowSticky.com today saying that if you were still excited about a project after being told “no” 100 times, then you should keep on trying. The problem with trying to get a point across on a 3×3-inch sticky note is that you don’t have room to deep dive into the idea behind the pithy Post-it Note, so let me expand on the concept here a little bit.
If you’ve been trying to get permission from a manager or committee at work to put your project into action and being told No at every turn, you can certainly keep on trying to get permission — but you need to change the strategy and tactics behind your pitch or you’re just going to keep on being told No. You need to dig deeper and find out WHY they are saying No and then adjust your pitch to compensate for those objections. If people are saying No for the same reason each time, then you’re not doing an effective job of addressing those concerns within your proposals. Face those weak spots head-on and work in the answers to those objections within your pitch and you may overcome them entirely.
If it’s a client or prospect who has been telling you No, then you need to determine the real reasons they are declining your proposal.
- Do they feel it is too risky?
Then you need to address those concerns and find ways to mitigate what they feel is at risk.
- Is the concept so novel that they don’t completely understand it?
Then you need to find a way to simplify your explanation without making them feel stupid for “not getting it”.
- Is it a budget issue?
If so, make sure you’re focusing on realistic ROI on the investment or propose financing or create a way to bootstrap the first stage of the project so that initial profits can begin to offset the setup costs.
Finally, perhaps you shouldn’t be trying to win anyone’s approval at all.
If you’re truly excited about your project and can’t gain anyone else’s approval to get it into motion, perhaps you simply need to give yourself permission and launch it on your own. You rarely need anyone else’s approval to get a project going, especially if you’re just creating a BETA version or producing a prototype.
You can invest your own personal time while scrounge pieces, parts, and supporters to help create a basic “Minimum Viable Product” version of your idea to get it out into the world and into people’s hearts, minds, and hands.
- The outline of a business book
- The first chapter of a novel
- A demo version of a song
- A storyboard of a film
- 3D printed product mock-ups
- The first 30 days of a comic strip
- Homemade batches of your sauces or sweets
Once you have a basic protoype you can let prospective customers, investors, business partners, and buyers see, touch, and taste your idea — you can get it out of your head and into their hands.
If they love your idea as much as you believed they would, then it will be no problem for them to put their hands into their wallets and put their cash into your hands to fund the further development of your project.