Thursday, December 31, 2020

Do they frighten you?

No need for big plans. Start with 3 small steps you can do consistently. These will give you the confidence to do more things and to do bigger things. Small steps, that’s how you get there.

What’s your big plan?

Wednesday, December 30, 2020

Can you believe it?

You can’t be better on a lot of fronts than other people. But you can work harder and you can work longer than other people. If you believe that, imagine where you would be?

What do you think the secret is?

Tuesday, December 29, 2020

Who’s your fund manager?

Invest in yourself. That’s the most important investment you will ever make. Get more skills, more knowledge, more intellectual stimulation, learn to be more creative, get more ability, optimize your capability, and more. All that will make you soar higher and help you get whatever success that you want.

How are you investing?

Monday, December 28, 2020

Who owns your life?

Do you surrender your next hour, next day, next week, next month, or next year to happenstance? 

If you do not prepare with the best decision possible with the best information possible, then you are surrendering your destiny to someone else.

Are you prepared?

Thursday, December 24, 2020

Do you want clarity in thinking?

If you want to think clearly, learn to write clearly. It takes time. That’s one of the many reasons why people don’t get better at thinking clearly. It takes time to sit down and write. And to learn to write clearly. 

Even if you can’t write clearly, writing clarifies thoughts.

Write to think. 

Can you write?

Wednesday, December 23, 2020

Are you busy?

You are being lazy if you are busy but your busyness does not get you closer to finishing your most important goal of the day. You are permitting yourself to do a thousand small things so you can avoid doing the one big thing that gets your most important task closer to completion. 

Will you admit you are lazy?

Tuesday, December 22, 2020

Did you forget hard earned lessons?

We almost forgot a hard-earned lesson this week. A veteran businessman tried to trade our cow with his magic beans. We wrote about it here 8 years ago. If you are interested in whether the beans grew to the heavens.

The lesson this week for us is that even hard-earned lessons need constant reminders.


Did you ever get your golden goose?

Monday, December 21, 2020

What do you need more of?

You don’t need more of anything else. What you need is consistency. Your dream achievement plan needs consistency more than anything else. 

So, what if you know and have the information? First, do you do anything with what you know? Do you do? Secondly, do you do it consistently?

What do you need less?

Friday, December 18, 2020

Did you ignore them?

This is going to be the future, hence what is now will the past soon. This is the old norm; hence the new norm will be this. These gurus said this, so those who oppose it must be wrong. The people who repeat these statements, these beliefs, expound these expositions probably read all of three paragraphs of an issue, heard a sentence or two on a new channel, and caught a glimpse of the headline on their social media feed.

They don’t know any more than you know. Probably less too. Better to do the research and the study yourself.

Did you call them guru?

Thursday, December 17, 2020

Did you empower them?

People criticize and comment on what you do for many reasons. Usually, it's when people want to feel powerful and smart. They criticize to feed themselves and reinforce their beliefs. They didn’t do it to feed your growth. Take what fertilizes you even if it is manure. Dump what sinks you even if they look like precious metals. 

What do you feed them?

Wednesday, December 16, 2020

What do you see?

To see things as they are and not what people say they are. To see things as they are and not what people believe them to be. In order to do that you need to take in a lot of views; often opposing ones and everything in between. Then have the ability to analyze and synthesize these views to be your own. This stance, after all the hard work, may be unpopular and contrarian to the leading popular thought now. 

Learning to think takes more than thinking.

What do you think?

Tuesday, December 15, 2020

Do you have a veteran mindset?

Some veterans are lazy to question the assumptions that need new answers. The years of experience have blinded them to these assumptions. Perhaps the decades of being right have also created a callus that is tough to peel off so that light may come in. It’s tough for these veterans to have a beginner’s mind. 

In my experience, including my own stubbornness, the biggest stumbling block to a beginner’s mind is the ego. If you can drown your ego. You can begin with the beginner’s mind. 

Who has frightened the beginner?

Monday, December 14, 2020

Are you that person?

Be around people who will tell you, “That’s a stupid decision.” Be that person to tell your friend, “That’s a stupid decision.” Both need courage. One to bury your ego, the other to save a friend.

Do you have guts? 

Thursday, December 10, 2020

How fast will you fail?

Fail fast, fail often. You can choose that route. Apparently, it teaches you to succeed

Or you can take the long, dull march. Painstaking, arduous, and gut-wrenching. Success also waits at the end for those who take this route. It just doesn’t sound sexy. 

How slow should you succeed?

Wednesday, December 9, 2020

What do you think?

Have strong views but don’t be too stubborn to change. Strong views tell us how deep your conviction is. But being too stubborn to change tells us you are close-minded. The middle path, as always, offers a route to success. 

How will you progress?

Tuesday, December 8, 2020

What’s going to move you forward?

Really, that’s the question you need to ask regardless of the situation – failure, stagnation, or success. How will you move forward tomorrow, the day after, a year from now? Think through the decisions that will make you move forward. Then make them and take action.

What’s holding you back?

Monday, December 7, 2020

What’s your price?

If you do not charge enough, where will you get your healthy profit margin? Charge a price where you can make a healthy profit. Then add on sales and marketing costs. If you don’t fund your brand awareness, where are customers going to come from? Your role as an entrepreneur is to make money first. Charging low prices is a challenging way of making money.

What’s your profit?

Friday, December 4, 2020

Did you input the other variable?

Your advertising plan is not your marketing plan. You may think it is or wish that it is. But it will just be an advertising plan. It is but one of the many elements in a complex integrated marketing equation. 

Figure out the bigger equation and where each element fits. That’s how you make the plan work harder.

What’s the more complex equation?

How do you do right by them?

Thursday, December 3, 2020

Who did you wrong?

There will always be someone somewhere who will not do right by us, hurt us, treat us like cow’s manure. Don’t bear any grudges. Don’t carry them. They are too heavy to be carried where you are going. Takes too much energy and slows you down.

Every time someone crosses you, makes you feel like horse excrement, remember all the angels around you that made you feel great, appreciated your work, support you, listened to you, and treated you with respect. Think about them, be thankful they are in your life. Be grateful for them. Show gratitude for every kindness you experience. Call them and thank them. Pay it forward in their honour. They support you in your journey. They lighten the work you need to do to get where you want to go. They propel you; they boost your energy. 

Grudges versus gratefulness and gratitude. It’s an easy choice.

How do you do right by them?

Wednesday, December 2, 2020

Do you know the way?

Principles are not formulas. When you learn the principles well and apply them, perhaps you can come up with your own formula. But before that, know the difference.

What is the recipe?

Tuesday, December 1, 2020

What did you really pay?

We have a client whose payment is always prompt. In fact, generally, they pay a little earlier than the payment due date. We like many things about this client and our working relationship with them. Being paid earlier than the due date tells us the client respects the relationship that we have. That our business is relational and not transactional.

It changed recently. When we asked the finance department why the change, we were told that the boss has been advised to delay payment. Rather than pay on time or earlier, delay all payments even when there is good cash flow in the company. Apparently, he was taught that paying later is better. 

What we pay with is money, but what we paid for may not just be services. What we paid for with our money and the actions behind that payment is a positive perception, good reputation, and trust. That cheque isn’t just money.

What’s the ROI?

Monday, November 30, 2020

Would you marry me?

Thinking about an exit plan even before you have entered into the business is crazy. It tells us that you aren’t committed. We do our best to stay away from people who peddle thoughts such as, “What’s your exit plan?”

For your own sake, set up the company, run it like your life depends on it, make a profit. Then perhaps, just perhaps you can think of an exit plan. 

Try a commitment plan. Works much better.

Are you a con man?

Friday, November 27, 2020

Does anyone have the answer?

There are principles. There are guides. There are people sharing their experiences. There are best practices. There are no rule books.

But if you are original, you bring your magic, stand out, fight mediocrity, do the work, take the blows; you know you will earn fans.

No one can do it for you but you. And that is good news.

Is anyone coming?

Thursday, November 26, 2020

Are you committing?

Commitment gets you started. If you are committing to start, the next decision you need to make is, are you going to continue or give up? If you are going to start, then go all the way. Starting, they say, is the most difficult. Learning curves, resistance, nay-sayers, disappointments, frustrations are just some of the simpler stuff you need to go through. But once you go through them, they get easier. After each valley and trough is the pathway to another peak. 

Commitment keeps you going. Every day of an entrepreneur’s life is filled with a series of conflicts between the better way and the easy way. Pick enough better ways, and you earned yourself another day to see excellence. You earned another year to see your dream come through. 

Are you consistent?

Wednesday, November 25, 2020

Did you put up a good fight?

Pick a fight with mediocrity. It’s going to be a tough fight. Excellence doesn’t just appear. Defeat mediocre with sweat and blood, and perhaps you'll have a glimpse at excellence. Put up a good fight because the mediocre tier is already packed. You won’t be able to stand out

Too many people want to stand out but they refuse to put up a fight with mediocrity. You want to stand out? You want to be talked about? Put up a good fight.

Who did you pick a fight with?

Tuesday, November 24, 2020

When is it happening?

The journey is so long, sometimes the end is not in sight. What is in sight are the stuff that are by-products of your experience and efforts. In there are nuggets of wisdom; pick them up. There will be nasties as well, sweep these away. 

There is no overnight success to expect. It’s a myth. What is not a myth is the 10-year over night success; the 20-year over night success. 

Take solace in the fact that those before you have taken their time to get where they want to be. Be patient even as you are running out of patience. 

It takes time to succeed. Take your time.

What’s your hurry?

Monday, November 23, 2020

Why don’t you…?

Friends, family, and business associates will come to you with good intentions to help you when you are running your business. Each with their own world view and each with how they would handle your business, IF they were to be running it. But they aren’t. 

You need to add you into whatever solutions and suggestions they gave you.

The goal is to do what you set out to do. You are the benchmark. If what they suggest is worth a look, then adapt it for your own use but remember, YOU are important. You have to be you and you are the magic potion in this concoction. No one can replace you and neither should they. 

Be yourself and run the company the way you want it. Be yourself and no one else. 

What do you want to be?

Friday, November 20, 2020

Did you create the problem?

You may not have created the problem. But if it affects you, you suddenly have a responsibility to fix it. Otherwise, you have to live with it.

Your client has a staff that doesn’t lead his team well. It affects your work. He is not your responsibility, but now he is your problem.

Fix it or live with it. Only you know which choice is an easier one.

Is it your responsibility?

Thursday, November 19, 2020

Do you like your alphabet soup?

4Cs, 4Es, 6Ps, 7Ps, and whatever not. It is your choice of whatever marketing models you want to use, tickle your fancy or suit your taste. Perhaps you like what some experts suggest marketing is 4.0 now. Or whatever in your opinion marketing may be. 3.141592653589 and not quite 4.0 yet. 

It’s your choice. If it works for you, great. 

Here is what I suggest if nothing seems to work for you.

  1. Get the basics right. I would suggest the classic 4Ps. 
  2. Get in-depth knowledge about it. Don’t just read from the first page of a Google search. No, really. Please. Re-read your marketing textbook if you have one. Yes, really. Please. 
  3. Write a marketing plan based on that. If you can’t write a proper marketing plan based on that, perhaps you don’t know the 4Ps in-depth yet? See point 1.
  4. Put your plan to work. 

Don’t choke yourself on too many alphabets. It’s bad for you. Start right. If you can’t write a proper marketing plan on a classical model, perhaps you shouldn’t care too much about others.

Are you satiated yet?

Wednesday, November 18, 2020

What other criteria do you have?

We are sure you have a set of criteria when choosing your clients. If you don’t, you need to start doing this. Recently, we added a new criterium. 

Sanity over money. 

If you and your team don’t have the intellect to comprehend what we will be talking about, we are not of the same wavelength. If you aren’t humble enough to admit your organization’s shortcomings, then we will be mad handling your business.

What can’t your money buy?

Tuesday, November 17, 2020

Do you have the intellect?

Some questions are so basic they sound dumb. Most people are too afraid to ask them assuming the other party probably knows the answer. Or has answered that before. It takes a lot of courage to ask a seemingly dumb question because you will be judged for it. 

We like asking our prospects their total distribution universe. Then we like to ask them what percentage they are in. Then we ask if this matches their distribution strategy and if they have one. Totally basic questions that need to be asked. They sound totally dumb if you made huge assumptions. But more often than not, you will be surprised by the answers.

If you are being asked dumb questions, you need to be brave. Brave enough to admit that you don’t have the answer and brave enough to find them.

Do you have the courage?

Monday, November 16, 2020

Is your inbox full?

Your inbox is NOT your to-do list. Make sure you decide what goes into your to-do list. This list has to have the most impact on your business. Otherwise, you are wasting precious time. When you take your inbox as your to-do list or allow it to dictate your to-do list, you surrender your destiny to others. 

Take charge of your to-do list. Watch over it like an Anatolian. 

Is your to-do list impactful?

Friday, November 13, 2020

What can I learn?

One way to get better is to constantly ask, what can I learn from this? Asking enough times and truly applying what you have learned paves the way to daily successes. If you are getting better every day and with every experience, then you are successful every day.

No need to think too far into the future.

How successful are you?

Thursday, November 12, 2020

Do you want to win?

Play the long game. In this world of instantaneous everything, where stamina is short in supply, where distance squashes ambitions and commitment is for the courageous; you can win by doing everything that no one has the guts to do. 

Play the long game. Have the patience to wait for the results. Build the stamina you may not have now. Take in small wins and savour them. The big win isn’t illusive. Not here yet, doesn’t mean won’t be here. Commit to going the distance so that the force of your ambition squeezes the fear in you into smithereens. 

How can you lose?

Wednesday, November 11, 2020

Is it time to learn?

Of course, everything is crumbling under your feet. But you are capable of multitasking. Of everything that you do, park time aside to learn. This is to ensure that the next time a crisis happens or the system fails, you have enough tools to deal with it. Or at the very least, know how to think through and not panic. 

Think back; you feel everything is crumbling because you don’t know what and how to think. A solution seems to escape you.

It’s never too late to learn. If you believe it, even during a crisis you should commit to learning and you must invest in learning. Time, money, and energy. Mix them into your want to learn, and you will find the will to learn.

You will be able to deal with this better now and you will be equipped to deal with it better the next time it comes.

When is it ever a perfect time?

Tuesday, November 10, 2020

Can you commit?

Commitment gets you started. If you can commit, then you have won half the game. The other half? The other half is where more than half the people lose.

To win the other half, you need consistency.

Consistency keeps you going. If you are consistent, then you are playing the long game. This long game, maybe only 2% of your peers will play because it is hard. It hurts. The price is hefty. That’s why the prize at the end is priceless.

Are you consistent?

Monday, November 9, 2020

What are you buying?

Sometimes what you are buying from a skilled consultant is the avoidance of costly mistakes on your end. Costly mistakes cost you not only dollars and cents, but time and energy as well. Money, you can make. Energy, you can take time and recover. Time? How do you take back time? 

Get the right consultant and ask, "Can you afford not to pay?" 

What is it going to cost you?

Friday, November 6, 2020

What are your responsibilities?

Remember your obligations.

We don’t know why people say most partnerships fail. We can only guess. Values, directions, whatever. We have never asked nor researched. 

When we decided to work together as business partners, we had already worked as colleagues in DDB for six years or so. Perhaps that helped in forging the teamwork and understanding. 

Importantly, we think two things made our partnership work well so far.

One, the feeling of obligation and responsibility to the other. Not wanting to let your partner down should be something that you are conscious of daily. Otherwise, it is easy to take things for granted.

Two, believing that it is difficult to measure qualitative things. Don’t compare who is doing more or less. For example, Long would do most of the presentations and Wan Hoon would do most of the financial paperwork. One is standing for two hours at most, the other is two days of excel sheets. 

Treat your business partner how you would like to be treated.

Have you done your work today?

Thursday, November 5, 2020

When do you start?

Get in on time.

We must admit we probably do this wrong, or someone is not telling us the truth about how the other bosses do it. 

We often joke about bosses having coffee at 10.30am and they have not even started work for the day. We covet a day like that. But we can’t seem to be able to do it. For the past 11 years, Wan Hoon being the more disciplined one between us, has always made it a point to get in by 9.30ish or so. Our official work hours are 9.30am to 6.30pm. She is rarely in after 10am unless there is a meeting or a family obligation. 

Giving yourself a routine and a strict time for getting into the office is a reminder that building a business is tough. We need that to remind ourselves daily. And nothing beats the morning alarm that says, “Let’s get it done” when it rings to tell you to get in on time.

We like it because we feel this habit contributed to us getting this far. What did they say? The early bird gets the worm first? We suppose, the early ones get more done.

When is coffee break?

Wednesday, November 4, 2020

Is Santa Claus coming to town?

Be nice.

Be nice to people. Suppliers, clients, staff, business associates, even telemarketers. Just be nice to people in general. It is a human behind that business card, that voice, that face you meet in any business dealings – solicited or otherwise. They are someone’s son, daughter, father, sister, mother, brother. Just like you. They go home to their families with the words and actions of what you said to them and how you have treated them.

Treat people the way you want to be treated. It’s what you have been taught since kindergarten. Just because people tell you or you have experienced the business world to be a cold, hard, shrewd place; it doesn’t mean you have to be part of it. Even if, even if it is true. We all have an opportunity to change that

Being sincerely nice to people makes any tough day a lot easier. You should try it sometime. When it works, just rinse and repeat.

Who’s gonna find out who’s naughty or nice?

Tuesday, November 3, 2020

What’s in your petri dish?

Culture takes time.

As a business owner, you set the tone and manner and you let the team at hand develop what would be the culture of the company. We stress, the team at hand. Your team changes and this affects the trajectory of the culture you are trying to develop. You can’t do it alone, much less dictate how fast and how well it grows. Don’t fret too much about the culture, for now. All these sexy romantic terms about how a great culture propels a company; they take time. Great culture takes time to nurture and grow. Like everything that you need to nurture and grow, it’s back-breaking work no one tells you about. That is the smelly, muddy part of company culture building.

Go ahead and build that great company culture of yours, make it a great place to work, and attract like-minded folks. But understand that it takes time, and it is dynamic. Which means there are all sorts of adjustments and tinkering you will need to make. All these companies that help you build a company culture seem to give you the impression that culture can be bought off the shelf. But you know, culture is going to be dictated by who you employ and who manages them. Remember too, that people come and go. That people interpret things in their own world view. Give it time. 

Even the culture in a tiny petri dish takes time. What more in a company like yours. 

What’s your growth factor?

Monday, November 2, 2020

What have you written today?

Read a lot. Then write.

Somewhere in your business building journey, you will need to take time to reflect and inject good ideas. The ideas themselves may not be new, but new to your business. These you can get quite easily by reading and reading a lot. 

Get into the habit of reading if you don’t already have this habit. Park time aside for it. It need not be long. An hour or so on alternate days is good. More is better. But some people can’t. If you can’t, then start slow and add time progressively. Sacrifice some TV time, YouTube time, and social media time. Nothing on those media will help you grow your business better than a good book. There is something about a good book. Maybe it is how the words and ideas are etched into the deep recesses of your brain and how they reveal themselves days and weeks later. 

Reading is alone time. You and your book mentor. Take notes. When you are done, do your best in writing them down. Somewhere, somehow. You are writing for yourself. Don’t worry about grammar and spelling. No one’s going to read it. There is something about writing. Maybe it is how the words and sentences are etched into the deep recesses of your brain and how they reveal themselves as plans months and years later. 

Writing crystalizes thoughts. You “think” you know. Unless you have written it, it’s all a muddle in your head. When you write things down, it becomes clearer. If it is not clear, keep writing.

What have you read today?

Friday, October 30, 2020

Can you shoot?

Trust your gut. Fire early.

It’s easy to spot the person you hired wrongly despite your good intentions and efforts. They stand out like a sore thumb early. 

The worst candidate we hired knew that in our industry we generally work past the normal 9-to-5 working hours. We are more like a 9-to-infinity-and-beyond. Even though he knew about this and it was made clear to him, after the first week; he began to leave at 6.30pm sharp without completing his time-sensitive work. 

By the time we hired him, we had enough experience in firing people and to know who deserved a second chance. We fired him after the first week.

Earlier in our history, we once gave someone nine months’ worth of chances. It was both painful for us and for him. When we finally let him go, we elevated. At his new place, he flew! Sometimes letting people go is doing everyone a favour.

You will want to be kind. But first, be kind to yourself. You are on a mission. Anyone not contributing to that mission is a liability. 

As usual, it’s not them. It’s you.

Who would you fire today?

Wednesday, October 28, 2020

Do you need a break?

Help someone new.

We all need a break. Help someone get their break. Fresh graduates, people with good resumes. Pass along a business you can’t handle. Refer businesses to others all the time. Point people in the right direction. Heck, go a step further to connect them so they don’t need to make that cold call, even if you said you could mention your name.

Passing good resumes along to friends in the industry is one of the easiest things to do. You aren’t just helping a fresh graduate, but you are helping someone in the industry get someone good. Your industry needs to have a good, healthy pool of people. Learn to keep good people in the loop. 

When you learn to give your time and effort to someone in need, one day someone will give you their time and effort when you need it. Nature’s just like that. Ok, God is just like that. Ok, karma is just like that. Take your pick. You do good, you get good. 

The business world can be as kind as we want it to be. It starts with you and everyone that you touch with your kindness.

Will they thank you?

Tuesday, October 27, 2020

Who do you need?

Start each hire as a profit centre.

Every team member that you hire will come in as a cost. The only time he won’t be a cost is when you have excess business that needs that extra headcount to handle the business. When you are facing headaches in terms of people – always ask “what is the actual problem?” 

Don’t hire just so your short-term pain can go away. It’s tempting to keep that lovable sloth on the team and get a new hire who works at the speed of a cheetah. But you will only add on to your headache. Now you have an additional cost and an additional personality to deal with

Face tough personnel challenges head-on. If someone doesn’t fit, say it early, say it often. Then part ways. It’s good for you and it’s good for him. They will find better places where they can shine. The best part is your company won’t lose the polish either for losing him. 

It’s not them. It’s you.

Why do you need them?

Monday, October 26, 2020

Are you an overnight success?

You won’t be a millionaire. Not now. 

By all means, dream big. But live practically. Almost everyone that goes into business dreams of the big bucks and the nice cars. There is nothing wrong with it. We have that dream too. 

Be practical because there is no such thing as an overnight success. Especially when you want to build a business that lasts and when it is the first time you are learning to hunt in the wild.

It takes a while. Be patient. Learn the ropes. Develop the skills

For some of you, it would start with preventing a loss, to breaking even before making a profit. And that’s OK too. Your big bucks will come. Just not now. Of course, we wish for you to be an overnight success. But we all know it takes a lot of early mornings, late nights, paracetamols, coffee, and sleep deprivation

Do you want to be a millionaire?

Friday, October 23, 2020

Who would you undress for?

You think you have to be perfect. You don’t have to. That doesn’t mean you do not give your work your best shot. Be excellent in all that you do, but you don’t need to pretend to be perfect. Learn to openly discuss with your clients your plans and some weaknesses your company may have. No one is perfect; why would we expect a company made up of so many imperfect individuals to be perfect? 

You would be surprised that people are very forgiving and accepting when you are upfront about what you can’t do. Be upfront, be authentic, and do your best. And if that is not perfect enough for some clients, it’s ok. The majority likes your imperfections even if they do not say it. Our naked imperfections sometimes signal that we are real and truthful.

Are you a perfectionist?

Thursday, October 22, 2020

Do you have a carbon copy?

They will never be you.

Be generous with your knowledge. Selectively, learn to give things away whether it is your time, money, products or service, and especially knowledge you possess. You get better as you learn to teach others. 

We know there are many copycats out there. Your worry may be that if you give too much away, then people will have access to your proprietary knowledge, processes, and products.  True. There will be. But there is also good news in our experience. They will never be you. 

Copycats can’t be you because they never pour their heart and soul into it. That’s why they are copycats. Copycatting doesn’t need heart. It is a soulless job. They can copy version 1.0 of you. But they can’t copy version 2.5, 4.3, 5.7, and so on and so forth. They will have to play the catch-up game so long as you up your game constantly. 

Be confident in yourself. Give things away joyfully. Especially your knowledge. It will come back in tonnes.

What are you giving today?

Wednesday, October 21, 2020

Do you love to walk?

Pound the pavement.

Zig Ziglar said, “You don’t have to be great to start, but you have to start to be great.”

This is the only exception to the say “no” rule we mentioned earlier. Say “yes” to every sales opportunity out there for a start. Because you need to learn to love sales. And salesmanship is a skill you can learn. Unless you get enough practice, it will be tough for you to be great in it. 

The other reason why you need to say “yes” for a start is that you really need to test the market on your offerings. You also need to test the market to know who your ideal customer is. Up until now, your ideal customer was merely a “target market” in your plan. Now, you need to see for real who this person is. No longer a “target”. 

You would be surprised to know who are the clients who think like you, and you would be surprised by who will buy into what you offer. Treat this period of “yes” saying as your test market period and treat it as understanding your market in-depth. Eventually, when you meet enough people who say “no” to you, you will know who will say “yes”. You develop a professional gut feel of who is the right fit from the start. This eventually leads you to who to say “no” to in the future. You will get so good at it that you can tell who is a no go even from the way the email is written or how the prospect speaks on the phone. 

Learn to love sales. Learn to say “yes” to sales opportunities so you get to hone your skill as an entrepreneur in more ways than one. Besides, sales skills help you develop a thick skin. Thick skin is good for business. 

How thick is your skin now?