“Desperation is a necessary ingredient to learning anything, or creating anything. Period. If you ain’t desperate at some point, you ain’t interesting.”
– Jim Carrey
“So, how fast should I get back to a customer after they’ve shown interest in my product?”
I just blurted out: “As fast as you fucking can!”
“But I don’t want to seem desperate…”
A valid point, I explained my views: “If you lose the customer then it’s clear that you don’t share the same values. Even if you get their business the relationship would’be ended up creating friction.
The time you’d spend worrying whether or not it’s the ‘right time’ to reply is better spent on finding others that are a better fit. There are plenty of others out there who will appreciate your hustle.”
Afterwards somebody pointed out to me that it’s not dating we’re talking about. It’s business.
It kind of is and it kind of isn’t, you know?
Look, these are my values and for some people they won’t mesh. That being said, let’s look at two different approaches.
1) Hooking up.
The relationship is purely transactional. You meet, you get down to business and hopefully both parties walk away satisfied.
There’s nothing wrong with that. As long as you’re both on the same page. Just understand that this doesn’t necessarily involve a lot of loyalty and recurring business. Perhaps the occasional booty call.
2) Building a relationship.
Here you’re looking to work together long-term. You make sure your companies share the same values and want to create a stable foundation where your businesses can intertwine and create something greater than either of you could do on your own.
Now, at first we’ll probably need to hook up a few times just to get a feel for where we want to go. Some already might know, but the vast majority of us have to go through that process of elimination.
“Ok, that didn’t work. That did. This was interesting. Why did I do that?” and so on. We figure it out as we go along.
One thing I’ve noticed as a theme for me is the value of communication. I can usually handle whatever quirks a client has as long as they’re willing to communicate.
However, when shit breaks down it’s usually because there’s disproportionate time spent on dilly-dallying.
Sure, it’s my job to figure it out. Figure out what and why things aren’t working. Reading people.
Just so we’re clear, I don’t believe that companies are people. But they’re made up of people.
As a result when people are not willing to be open and/or change things that are contributing to the issue I feel like I need to take a step back.
I’ll be really honest about what needs to get done and at the same time ask what I can do. There needs to be some reading between the lines, body language etc, because people tend to not want to say what they mean.
Well, it’s fine for those who want to do that. They’ll probably even have great success.
What most people miss out on is the fact that the ultimate key lies in being yourself.
While you can attract more business and cash by understanding and practicing a few principles, you need to ask yourself if that’s what you’re really looking for.
If it is? Great! If it isn’t? Well, you might want to try something else.
Asking the question and framing it as not wanting to be viewed as “clingy”, “needy” or “desperate” does something I feel is destructive.
It hands the power of your self-worth to the other person or business.
Something I would not advise you to do.
Now, this might seem like something cold-hearted or people who aren’t willing to be vulnerable do. But let me explain what I mean by it.
Your worth comes from you believing in who you are and what you do. Noone has the power to take that away from you unless you give it to them.
This is a lesson I wish I’d learned a lot earlier. At the same time I don’t think I would’ve appreciated it as much.
Also, it means that you don’t have to hold back. You have the permission from yourself to express yourself.
Granted, this’ll lead to some “losses” but at the same time it’ll ground you in a sense of worthiness. And that’s a powerful place to come from.
As an added bonus you’ll have more time to spend on those who actually appreciate what it is you do.
What it comes down to is to strike the right balance for you. I lean heavily into the long-term camp. I’d say it’s about a 92% long-term and 8% hook up ratio.
I also know what that means. It means that I’ll proabably not make as much money or meet as many people during my life and career. And I’m OK with that.
For some the right balance will be 100%/0%, for others 50%/50% and for some 17%/83%. You’ll need to try it out for yourself and see what fits you.
Here are a few take home messages that’ve helped me:
1) Communication is muy importante.
3) Learn when to walk away.
4) Learn when to stay.
6) Your self-worth comes not from what others think of you but from your beliefs about yourself.
Have you found a balance that works for you? Are you still figuring it out?
Let me know in the comments and hit me up on Twitter.
Have a kick-ass ₢eative day!