Tuesday, June 8, 2010

How Not To Handle Rejection

Something all of us who deal in business learn, preferably sooner rather than later, is how to handle rejection. Customers will shop elsewhere; they will buy different products than yours, and they will buy from you one time while taking their business elsewhere the next time. It's going to happen.

The best thing you can do when facing this situation is a twofold approach. One, study the reason or reasons why someone took their business elsewhere to see if there is something you need to improve on, be it in the quality of service provided or the products and/or goods you are offering. The other thing is being gracious to the departing customer, letting them know you appreciate their considering you, or previous business conducted with you, and that the door is always open for their return should they discover the grass that appeared greener on the other side of the fence is actually Astroturf.

And then there's what not to do.

A bit of background to set this up. Sarah Fisher is a race car driver who has spent most of her career in Indy cars; i.e. the ones that are in the Indianapolis 500. A couple of years ago, she set up her own race team.

The other day, she sent a press release:

Sarah Fisher Racing announces today, the release of Branded Management, opened in February 2010 by Klint Briney. In the scope of day to day operations and its merger with the big picture goals of the team, SFR has decided upon a different direction from a business and public relations perspective. Branded Management had been serving Sarah Fisher Racing since February 2010, as an external agency searching for potential media and marketing opportunities.

"It was time for us to part ways. We wish Klint Briney the best with his new company, knowing the first few years are the hardest of a new business," says Fisher, owner and driver of the number 67 entrant for Sarah Fisher Racing. "At a point in all of our lives, it works better to travel on different paths to accomplish the bottom line. In working with our partners, it was extremely important to maintain an in-house platform for our business, marketing and public relations endeavors, which continues to get stronger daily since its change in February."

In looking towards future opportunities, the team is working together with its current partners to finalize a new strategy. "We will continue to perfect the in-house structure we developed in February this year and are excited to venture into that next direction. It will be able to tie all of our business together in one joint project. We should be able to finalize our external agency in addition to our in-house efforts very soon. So far, I have been really happy with the team and what it has been capable of performing off track since February. I am confident that we are on the right track."

Working with Sarah Fisher Racing partners has become an invaluable asset to team owner, Sarah Fisher. "One of the highlights of wearing the owner hat, is working with CEOs and major business players who have been very successful and have some great insight that they have all been very willing to share. As a young entrepreneur, it has been a privilege. It means a lot to me to be able to pick up the phone and strategize with some of the best in corporate America when you make decisions that are big picture."

Briney's response?

"Beginning my career with a budding professional athlete nearly a decade ago allowed me to leave Sarah Fisher as a recognized brand name," said Briney. "I was able to exponentially build the brand through endorsement deals and a plethora of national media placements and am pleased to have equipped her with the tools to continue on her journey. For everything I built for her from the Hillary Clinton visit, the national promotion with Susan G. Komen for the Cure and lastly our joint effort in producing our book, I’m pleased with everything I was able to accomplish for her as a staff of one. I leave Sarah with our upcoming features in Glamour and Consumers Digest magazines, which BRANDed was able to secure for her as our last working venture together. I wish her well as she embarks on the twilight of her career."

Good luck getting new clients if that's how you talk about previous ones!

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