The Upside

This Is Why You Should Want More No’s

Upside members are so smart and often blow my mind with their wisdom and expertise. Celi Arias, a long-time Upside member and experienced builder of businesses, is one of those people. 

A few weeks ago while I was facilitating one of The Upside’s weekly Office Hours sessions, Celi generously raised her hand to help another member who felt stuck around business development outreach. 

That’s when Celi said something to the group that stopped me in my tracks. She said:

“Challenge yourself to get as many no’s as possible. This will push you to go for what you want and eventually get the yes.”

This resonated with every bone in my body because despite the success of the business I’ve built, I still hate putting myself out there and I really don’t like making big asks. 

But maybe I should.

Upside member Sally Joy Wolf is someone I deeply admire for her confidence to go for the no’s. 

She’ll walk up to celebrities or dream connections and simply ask for what she wants, not worried at all about what their response may be. And many times…

…no’s turn into maybes which then turn into a YES

In fact, Sally has had two phone calls with Anderson Cooper about being on his podcast, just because she wasn’t afraid of a no. 

She attended a live taping and was also featured by Oprah Daily, just by being unabashed by a possible no.

She attended a handful of invite-only conferences for free, simply because she asked.

And, she received a birthday serenade from 50 Cent, just by going up to him and asking him to sing, “Go shorty​, it’s your birthday…”. (OK sure, not business-related, but still worth mentioning!)

Ask yourself this:

What could be different in your business if you…

Met with as many contacts as you could?

Pitched yourself to dozens of media outlets?

Started building relationships with your dream companies?

Posted more on LinkedIn, unafraid of who may or may not comment?

Submitted applications for industry awards?

Raised your prices?

Opened a new door with a big launch?

Challenged yourself to collect as many no’s as possible?

My guess is that if you’ve read this far, you are probably thinking of something specific you’ve been wanting to do but haven’t had the courage, time or energy to pursue it yet. 

Or maybe there’s been a big goal you’ve been dreaming of, but aren’t sure how to turn it into a reality. 

Take this email as a sign:

Go for the no’s and don’t stop there.

You have a lot more to gain and less to lose than you think!

Erin Halper

About the Author

Erin Halper is the founder and CEO of The Upside and the leading authority on independent consulting. Since launching The Upside in 2017, Erin has helped thousands of professionals transition from corporate life into consulting to achieve flexibility, autonomy, and a renewed sense of purpose in their careers.

Erin has been a frequent speaker at Columbia, NYU, Harvard, and Brown and has been featured as a leading future of work expert on dozens of podcasts as well as in Forbes, Business Insider, Nasdaq, Crunchbase and many more.

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