Blogs, Ned Dwyer

Minimising rejection

StartupSmart /

Earlier this week I wrote a post about how I seek rejection every day. 

For some people rejection is a particularly bitter pill to swallow so I thought I would write about some ways you can recruit, win business and build goodwill without feeling the burn of rejection.

1. Host co-working

As I write this, we’ve got half a dozen people working out of our office on their own projects. Some are freelance developers (which is great for recruitment), some are working on their own start-ups and others just have the day off and want to hang out with like-minded people.

It’s all organised under the brand of Jelly and anyone can get involved as a participant or a host.

We do a little work in start-up marketing and advisory as well as building minimum viable products and have met clients through both hosting and participating in Jelly events.

More importantly we’ve met some incredible designers, developers and business people – many of whom we’ve been lucky enough to work with.

2. Give away some of your time

I’m happy to meet with start-ups for a coffee and throw ideas around. It doesn’t take long and it’s good to build the network, when I’ve got the time. 

I’ve found that the more of my time I giveaway the easier it is to get time with the people who I want to meet with.

Architects Edwards Moore recently made this process a bit more formal, starting a weekly residency at one of their projects where anyone can book a half an hour slot for a free consultancy. It’s partly their way of giving back, partly a way to meet new and interesting people and a great way to discover new client projects.

OHours in New York have made a platform to allow anyone to give away time on a regular basis and share their skills. A great program that I’d love to see more of in Australia.

3. Host an event


Hosting an event is about providing value to a community. It’s not about business development or “building your personal brand”. 

However, when you treat it like a service to the community around you there are unexpected yet positive benefits.

It could be a lean start-up meeting, or something like Creative Mornings. Provide value to the community of people around you or the industry you’re working in and it will come back.

Customer development doesn’t need to be all push. Discover ways for people to come to you and pull new business in.

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