1. An occasional guilty pleasure I indulge in is an episode of NBC’s The Voice on television. I was struck how (unlike other audition shows) these aspiring musical artists were so classy about being eliminated. Various versions of thank you so much, what a wonderful experience, and how much they love Adam, Christina, Blake, and/or Cee-Lo and how much they learned occurred, person after person. I searched high and low to get a HD clip online of any of these and couldn’t find any. Finally I resorted to recording a sample from my own TV with my iphone, the result of which you see here.
2. I was at a conference earlier this fall moderating a panel on global talent when an MBA student raised their hand and asked, “how do I convince companies to give me an offer?” My response I’m sure was not anticipated. I said, “You don’t.” I went on to explain how their starting point should be about discerning what unique/special gifts they bring to the table, knowing full well that education and work experience are givens when it comes to every other MBA student searching for first job out of school. Then they should work on how they can make sure that those they speak with understand those gifts, at which point the right company will be there to offer the position. Often times, getting rejected from a job offer doesn’t necessarily mean that one is not good enough, but more often than not, it is simply not a match for the time, circumstances, etc. Therefore, they should plan that every time things don’t work out, they should think about what they learned from the experience, but also understand that the opportunity wasn’t for them. In other words, it just wasn’t the right match.
I use these two examples to illustrate the point that disappointment doesn’t need to be a negative experience, but rather an opportunity by which one can grow. When one accepts (and is even grateful) when things don’t work out, one also opens up to the new possibilities that will follow. Take a page from The Voice’s unsuccessful candidates—after all, it’s far more pleasant that way. Now I should practice what I preach :)
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