Taking a punt, and putting yourself out there; It’s something that’s essential to do in so many situations, including if you are trying to break into a new field of work, meet someone new, or pitch for business.
I put myself out there often, and often the response was ‘yes thanks’ and sometimes it was ‘no thanks’. But what was worse than the ‘no’, were the times when there was no reply at all.
Had they even received my email or voicemail, letter of application? Or did they not even think my offer dignified a response?
Until recently, I used to just move on and presume that not getting a reply, was just a lazy way for someone to say no. But having listened to a very savvy business-woman Andreea Ayers talk about persistence and getting herself in front of prospective clients on a podcast, she gave a great reasoning for not taking ‘no reply’ as a ‘no’ that made a lot of sense.
She explained, many people are so inundated with emails, texts, phone calls, meetings, that sometimes, your communications to them simply do get lost, or forgotten, or placed in a pile that they haven’t gotten around to yet.
Andreea gave the example of following someone up after not hearing anything from her original email to them, and the person saying ‘oh I’m so glad you caught me, it completely slipped my mind to contact you, how about coffee tomorrow?’.
This motivated me to reach out to someone I have had no response from for three weeks, (who I was automatically presuming was not interested). This time, they replied right away, unfortunately with a ‘no thanks’, but at least now I can move on knowing one way or the other where I stand.
So be brave, if you have not heard a ‘no’, you are still in the game. There may be many things happening behind the scenes, so don’t be afraid to follow up, it’s perfectly normal to check in!
Alternatively, there’s always ‘Hungry, Hungry, Hippos’.