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December 12, 2017

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How to Overcome Adversity: Choose The Lens

When you wake up in the morning, you choose what sort of day you will have.

No matter how bad things might seem, you always have control over how you choose to interpret things. For example, if you lost a client because your point of contact left the company, you could be disappointed because now you are going to have to start all over again building new relationships within that organization if you didn’t have any others there in the first place. But if you ask yourself, “How can I profit from this situation?” you’ll quickly see that now you have two clients instead of one: your past client, and also the new company which just hired your old point of contact.

Recently a recruiter who signed up for my 12 week coaching program had a client who was very interested in a candidate. They even called the candidate directly to set up an interview. The candidate never called the client back nor the recruiter. “What should I do?” she asked. We came up with a plan that would get him to return her call. He did, and apologized profusely saying he was just busy but still interested. Unfortunately it was too late because the client felt he was irresponsible. The candidate had a crisis at work and put his job search on the back burner, at least for two weeks. So I told the recruiter that the best way to handle this type of emotional adversity is to ask this question: “How can I benefit from this situation?” I told her that this was actually a good situation becuase now there were three benefits:

  1. I told her that it is in times like these that we pay the most attention. When your desk starts falling apart and things don’t go as you want, then you are more receptive to learning. We always pay less attention to our process or areas to improve when things are going well. But when the weels fall off, then we look for ways to improve. We inherently become more teachable. So I told her that it’s good in that way. It will be a great lesson. We adapted her process to include a conversation with candidates about why they need to return all her calls withing 24 hours.

  2. I also pointed out that her client will probably understand that this was not a reflection on her. She confirmed that her relationship is still intact with them and found an even better candidate for them.

  3. She also shared with me that the candidate seemed to have a higher level of respect for her now. She can also place him in another firm still.

So what turned out to be a bad situation with her will actually double her placements from this situation and also give her a lifelong lesson in early stage candidate influence.

Anytime something bad happens to you, the lenses through which you look will always help you interpret how you see things. An easy and quick tool to change these lenses are the questions that you ask yourself. Here are a few to consider the next time you are in the middle of a crisis or a problem:

  • “How can I profit from this dilemma?”

  • “How can this situation make me a better person?”

  • “How can I grow through this situation?”

  • “What are three positive outcomes that I will experience because of this?”

  • “How can I make money from this situation?”

- Scott Love

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