The Power of "No Thank You"

Photo Credit: 1MC ICCR

Photo Credit: 1MC ICCR

About a year ago, I found myself at a coffee shop at 7:30 in the morning, waiting for a prospective client meeting to begin. He had suggested getting together to learn more about my business, and it was a meeting that had been rescheduled a couple times before. As the clock approached 7:45, and 8, and then 8:15, it became clear that the meeting would again need to be rescheduled.

When I eventually reached the prospective client and he suggested some options for rescheduling, I found myself saying "no thank you." This was a small but important moment in my business. From that point forward, I made a commitment to stop the chase of prospective clients who are a little bit interested, in order to more powerfully serve the "hell yes" clients who are all in. I made a commitment to stop networking and instead simply attend events that are interesting and fun. And, I made a commitment to stop saying yes to things I felt like I should do and to instead just say yes to the ones that are exciting.

This week, I was reminded of the power of that decision. The week included lively leadership development work with a "hell yes" construction company. It included kicking off a project that is so big that it both scares the heck out of me and thrills me. It included rich, juicy exploration with clients. And it included this presentation with my friend and partner in crime for The Innovators' Academy, Allison.

In order to create space for the "hell yes," we sometimes need to say "no thanks." It's a lesson I find myself learning over and over again.