the mega experience that nearly didn't happen ... aka learning my own lessons about self promotion ...
I’ve had the privilege of hosting a prestigious event with significant visibility this week. It went really well, the client was super happy, and I feel expanded through the experience.
But it almost didn't happen.
A former employee of mine, who became a friend and then a client, recently moved role. We hadn’t talked for a while but I reached out to say hi, we chatted briefly on the phone as a catch up. After our call I felt a strong intuitive nudge to offer him some complementary coaching/ consulting sessions. I rarely do this – in fact not since I first started my consulting business 8 years ago.
I wrote an email offering him 3 complementary sessions with me. I remember this felt quite vulnerable, my fears running were ‘how will he receive this?' 'He might say no!' and 'He might find this really pushy!’
I heard NOTHING. No response. Nada. Not even a thanks-but-no-thanks.
I waited for a week.
Ok, he's busy.
Then another week, checking I’d definitely sent it.
Maybe he's thinking about it.
In week 3 I checked via Facebook that he hadn’t tragically and unexpectedly died.
I also spotted he’d been present on Linked In - aha! alive and kicking!
So my Drama Narrative then became 'he doesn’t want to work with me and he doesn’t know how to say no without it being super awkward'. This quickly turned into 'Hmmmm so now it's super awkward. I can never speak to him again'. And this quickly became 'our friendship and working relationship is over, and so is probably my entire consulting business'.
In week 4 (I know, long time heh?)
I decided the waiting and not knowing the outcome was more painful than the potential rejection, so I sent him another email, this time to his home address – short and sweet just ‘wonder if you saw this …’ and including my former offer email underneath.
He immediately got back to me, within minutes. I’m so sorry I’ve been breathing into a fire hose for the last few weeks, thank you so much for your offer, yes let’s schedule the sessions now!!
From these free sessions, other things have flowed my way, including this fantastic event this week.
- Keep in contact with people. People you’ve managed, your peers, your former bosses (more on developing your network coming in future months..) Keep making connections.
- Listen to the intuitive nudges (they are wise and they know useful stuff).
- Offer your expertise and what you have out of a heart for service.
- Feel the fear and do it anyway.
- When people don’t respond – it's highly likely to not be about you!!! Do not take the non response personally! Keep reaching out and making new connections.
- Notice the dramas you create inside your own head that hold you back. Notice and say 'really?' and do what you desire to do anyway.
Over to you:
What resonates for you from this story? What does this say to you about the opportunities that are open to you/ how you self promote/ how you use your network/ going for your desires/ taking bold leaps/ facing your fears/ accessing your courage .... or what else?
Want more leadership and life tips?
Over at Catalyst Collective we share monthly Wisdom Guides packed with tips and strategies for stepping up in your leadership. Check out this Guide on self promotion (without the ick factor) here. and here and you can sign up to receive them straight to your inbox (alongside other free and inspirational resources) here.
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