|Written by Abby Kohut|
Last night on our Career Wake Up Call, I told a story about one of my favorite people in the world, Mark Victor Hansen. Mark is the co-author of Chicken Soup for the Soul, a #1 New York Times and USA Today bestselling series. I met Mark in April in Orlando at Mega Book, a seminar for authors. I learned great lessons that weekend, one of which is how to be resilient when it comes to rejection.
We have all been rejected on many occasions and for many different reasons. Two year olds are told that they can't stick their fingers in light sockets. Fifth graders receive C's on their book reports. Teenagers are told they can't go to parties without parental supervision. People in the dating scene get rejected way too often to mention. So then why does an interview rejection seem to hurt so much more?
Mark Victor Hansen told us at Mega that his book Chicken Soup for the Soul was rejected 51 times before a publisher agreed to publish it…51 times!!!! Anyone who has read even one of the Chicken Soup stories is probably reading this with utter amazement. Why on earth would one person have rejected it? And then 50 others?
I learned a similar lesson from my sales manager back in 1990. I can still hear his words as if we spoke yesterday. He told me that success in sales requires a proverbial funnel. You have to find many potential customers to put into your funnel, one of which will eventually say, "Yes". Each time one customer says "No" and drops out of your funnel, you celebrate because you are that much closer to getting to that "Yes". It is no different with job searching.
Rejections are not personal. There are many things behind the scenes that go on that cause a company not to choose you, and you'll never know the reasons why. Many times, the reasons are far beyond your control. The thing to do is to prepare to the nth degree, present your best self, and go for it! If you receive a rejection, dust yourself off and learn from your mistakes if you think you made any. And then…MOVE ON without beating yourself up. Don't take rejection personally. Use it as a catapult to success.
Absolutely Abby’s Advice:
Eventually, you are going to find a job. It make take one more rejection, or ten - or maybe a few more. But, you will find a job if you persist. The goal is to accept the rejections you receive and keep going without quitting. Rejection is not failure. Giving up pursuing your dreams is the failure. Keep dreaming and you will get there. That's what happened to Mark, that's what's happening to me, and that's what will happen to you.