No one ever said entrepreneurship would be easy. Former corporate attorney Nick Cronin shares three ways that rejection propelled his business forward.
“No” Is a Great Word
In the corporate world, being told “no” is usually seen as a bad thing. When I started as an entrepreneur, I took this mentality and would only seek out things if I thought there was a good chance that I would hear “yes.” But entrepreneurship is different. You are trying to change the way something is done and unless you are pushing boundaries this will not happen. Therefore, you need to constantly be pushing boundaries, so you need to be prepared to hear “no,” because you will hear it a lot. If you are not hearing it, you need to push harder. Now I take every “no” in stride, learn from it and know that it’s part of entrepreneurship.
This is something that seems simple in theory, but is so difficult to execute. Being an entrepreneur means sometimes making decisions, even with incomplete and imperfect information. Don’t let this paralyze you into indecision and inaction. Decisions need to be made and even if you are unsure what the right decision is, take action. After you take action you can collect more information and test, and then reverse course if something isn’t working. But if you take action action, you will not have any data to know what’s working
and what isn’t. I’ve learned, and wish I knew way earlier, that taking action is usually a better move than letting indecision stall progress.
Enjoy the Ride
Entrepreneurship is really difficult. There will be ups and downs. I went from being a corporate attorney, receiving a regular paycheck, to struggling to make ends meet—and this was by choice. There are some very stressful moments that come with a decision like that. But looking back, I do not regret anything for a second. I wish I had the insight to enjoy the day to day adventure of entrepreneurship a little more. Enjoy the good times and don’t get too down at bad times. I am so lucky to be able to do what I want full-time and I wish I realised that more when I started. Even now, I constantly need to remind myself of this, so this is a lesson I’m still learning.
Nick Cronin is a corporate lawyer turned entrepreneur. Nick has worked in the in-house legal departments of two publicly traded corporations. His newest venture, ExpertBids.com, allows individuals and businesses to get free, personalised bids from lawyers, accountants, and consultants.
The Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) is an invite-only nonprofit organisation comprised of the country’s most promising young entrepreneurs. The YEC promotes entrepreneurship as a solution to unemployment and underemployment and provides its members with access to tools, mentorship, and resources that support each stage of a business’s development and growth.
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