The greatest business book ever written in my view is “Selling to Win” by Richard Denny. It came in luminous green so everyone on the train knew you were reading a book on sales, like a massive sales nerd, but I challenge anyone to adopt some of the principles in there and not improve as a result.
It has the best-sense statement going, that’s stuck with me all my life, that a ‘no’ is “just a no – for today”. I want to talk about the word no and rejection in the context of job hunting.
We don’t mind the word no, I actually get told ‘no’ all the time. I didn’t mind at all because one it’s part of my job, and two having started a few successful companies… I know that the word ‘no’ is very important. A business cannot flow without this word. It is also an emotive word we don’t like being told ‘no’ but it’s important to everyone we are regularly giving out and receiving this reply.
From a business standpoint, if we spent all our time working on new clients that never said ‘no’ to our offers of working with them, we’d never get to the people who actually did want to work with us! If we didn’t say ‘no’ to jobs outside our skill area we’d work too inefficiently. Likewise, with candidates, if nobody turns anyone down, how does anyone know how their job hunt is progressing, or where the traction is for someone’s CV?!
Also, statistically, if you ask a question like ‘do you want to hire me’ or ‘do you want to do business with me’ the answer is orders of magnitude more likely to be negative than positive – because there’s tonnes of factors going against this happening, and only a set few that will see it actually happening. Any candidate should be prepared for this. Likewise as recruiters we know the lie of the land on this too.
A ‘no’ can feel like failure. However this ‘failure’ is actually what every business process relies on, whether it’s going for a job or developing a product - failing quickly is good. Quick feedback is good and if you can level with a ‘no’ isn’t even all that personal, it’s just the fit isn’t there today… you’ll do much better. Come back some other time and ask again, but today it’s a ‘no’.
Please feel free to say ‘no’ to us if a job isn’t right. It’s fine to be direct and say this, in fact we actively encourage and rely on constant, very direct communication.
A yes is great too, but a ‘no’ is just as great. LiCa Scientific is here to find you the right job and make your experience as good and honest as possible along the way.