Podcast Episodes
How to Handle the Unexpected

Jason Owens, Founder of Renewable Confidence

Is a surprise a good thing or a bad thing?  Well, that depends.  In this episode we dive deeply into the topic of defending ourselves against negative surprises.


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Jason: (00:06)
Broadcasting from a small mountain town high in the Colorado Rockies. My name is Jason Owens, and this is The Renewable Confidence Podcast, a show that helps renew your confidence in yourself and in your business every day.

Well, today we’re going to talk about how to navigate the unexpected, right, but have that mental management here. And as I was preparing for today’s show, I realized that I do a number of episodes on kind of that mental management of running a business, the mental management of running a company, navigating that emotional roller coaster. So if you start seeing me, uh, print out some things, whether it’s a over on my, my website at RenewableConfidence.com or if you happen to be a subscriber and you, uh, see something come across an email where I’m using the term Sanity Check Series, I’m probably going to be referring to this batch of podcasts that I’ve been doing that really referred to that mental management side.

Jason: (01:03)
So anyway, don’t be surprised if you see that in the future. So here we go. So handling things that are unexpected. Okay, well really what we have here are our, it’s one coin with two sides. Either something happened that you kind of were expecting or something that happened that you weren’t expecting. Right? So on that side of, of, of, well, you weren’t expecting it, right? Um, so here you are, you’ve got this really big case you’ve been working on super huge client. Uh, everything’s looking good, you getting all kinds of buying signals and then they back out at the last minute. Right? Okay. Totally unexpected. Not a good thing. Right? Cause you had done the age old thing of planning on where you’re going to use that money. And I mean, you had already mentally won the deal and you were mentally spending the profits and blah, blah, blah.

Jason: (01:54)
Right? So then this kind of comes out of left field, really, really cramping your agenda. Not a good thing. Okay. Now you could have a surprise that is unexpected, but good. Okay. A good, unexpected surprise. And that’s completely different animal. And when I’ve worked with people here over the past 10 to 12 years, and I’m kind of just thinking through just the patterns that I’ve noticed in people when something unexpected happens. It really depends on is this a good thing or a bad thing? It all depends upon that interpretation of the event, doesn’t it depend upon the reality of the event? It depends upon the interpretation of the event. So here’s some things that are surprises that might be while they’re unexpected, things that are bad, right? That could be perceived as bad. So you ran a promotion for your brick and mortar store, but you just didn’t get the foot traffic you were looking for.

Jason: (02:50)
Right? Or maybe you’re the outbound marketing world. You made a hundred dials last week, a hundred phone calls, but you didn’t really set any appointments. If you’re in the online world, you had some Facebook ads that you were running [inaudible] you ended up getting some sales out of it. You had some, some acquisitions, so to speak. But the cost of acquisition was way higher than what you’re used to. Okay. Crazy crazy things. All right. So those are unexpected. Now what are some good unexpected surprises as well? Dang it. I’m in retail and I sold out of my inventory of pink socks. Pink socks are going like crazy. I literally can’t keep them on the shelf. Now I’m out and when I’m out I’m missing out on sales. Okay, so problem, right? Unexpected. But on the other end of the spectrum, so it is good unexpected. Another one could be you’re in that outbound world, you made some dials.

Jason: (03:44)
Holy cow, I don’t know what the phase of the moon must’ve been crazy last week, but I ended up setting so many appointments last week that now this week on my calendar I can hardly breathe, right? I don’t have any time to do any preparation. I don’t have time to make my phone calls for next week’s appointments. Right? So you could have good problems that are with regards to appointments and scheduling. Now what I’ve noticed here is about the handling of these things. Okay. The handling, so let’s go back to the bad surprises here. So a lot of what I’ve seen of handling these bad surprises, it is good old fashioned expectation management. Okay. And what I mean by that is, let’s go back to the example of running the Facebook ads. So you’ve gone to the point of creating these ads and now you’ve turned them on.

Jason: (04:36)
You’ve set your certain dollar number or dollar budget, uh, per day or per week or however that goes, and it ends up not working out for you. Well, what were you expecting to have happened? Because frankly, if you don’t go into it expecting a whole lot, it’s just a lot easier to just look at the data and live with the data, right? No matter what the cost of acquisition is. Same thing goes with brick and mortar people. You set up this great big promotion, you just know that this coupon is going to bring people into your store and it doesn’t quite work. All right, well, what were you expecting to have happen? Were you expecting, did you quote unquote need to do a certain amount of business this weekend? Right? So whenever I see people kind of setting their minds as to what they want to have happen, that’s where you get into a lot of angst.

Jason: (05:27)
If you can in some way separate yourself, meaning separate your ego, your identity, whatever it is that’s wrapped up in this result. If you can separate that from the outcome, you will absolutely do yourself a favor. Sometimes it may be you just asking yourself a question, what am I expecting here? Okay, that question again, what am I expecting here? So I made a hundred last week reaching out to my clients. What am I expecting? Well, gosh, Jason, three weeks ago when I reached out to to even 60 people, I still had at least four appointments on the books. So I’m thinking if I do a hundred man, I should have six, maybe even eight appointments on the book, if I’m lucky. Okay, so you’re going into that thinking for eight appointments, six to eight, and you got to, okay, well, what’s that mean? Okay, I may not have anything to do with, you may have everything to do with the people you’re calling.

Jason: (06:30)
Right? And, and we won’t get into dissecting that, that example a whole lot. But can you just simply extract your ego or your identity from the outcome? Ask yourself that question. What am I expecting here? Okay. Way earlier in season one, I did a podcast episode, I believe it’s episode 23 it’s got a gym membership for your mind. If you want some more help in that area, go check out episode 23 gym membership from for your mind. Really good. Really good about just how you can begin distancing yourself from the outcome. And there’s a tool there, I won’t give it away. There’s a tool there that you can begin using that will dramatically help you and it’s helped me a ton. Okay, so let’s move to the other example of the good surprise. So you sold out of your inventory of the pink socks. You don’t have any time on your calendar this week because you were so good at setting appointments last week, right?

Jason: (07:27)
So it happens. So what I’ve seen with people is that this, this happens a lot, is I call it the advance and the wall. Meaning they just had this great breakthrough, they make an advance. And then what does that breakthrough do? Well, it presents another whole new set of challenges which become the wall, right? So you have this huge advance and then you’d come up against the thing that you don’t know how to get around again. Okay? So an example is doing some, some work with a client here recently and it’s an online store. Okay. And the store, Holy cow started making some sales. Now this is a fairly new store and Holy cow, the things started making some sales. All right. Big advance. Okay, this person has brick and mortar. All right? Just getting into the online world, just getting out there to breathe a little bit.

Jason: (08:14)
I’m just putting some stuff up online, you know, kinda kind of feeling their way around. And then Holy cow, this thing starts to sell. Now what do I do? Okay, Holy cow. Now we’re, we’re grappling with, Oh wow, look at all this time I’m spending packing this stuff. This stuff isn’t quite as easy to pack as I thought. Um, I can only fit three in a box and I thought I was going to be able to fit six on a box. So that now means, wow, what do I do with packing? Uh, is this double my shipping costs only got what? What, what does that do to my profit margin on these sales? Okay, so completely new issues to deal with. But these are definitely of growth and not problems of stagnation. So it’s the advance and the wall. No, this may sound like it’s a trivial thing.

Jason: (09:02)
It may sound like it is so easy to just get beyond. But let me tell you what folks, when you come from a corporate world, a lot of those, those obstacles are, you drive right over them and you hardly even know it because the organization has so much inertia to it. I mean, it’s clearly going somewhere clearly making strides when you are now by yourself. Okay? You are a soloist and you run into something like this. It may seem trivial at the outset, but Holy cow, these are big deals, right? Because there’s only one person in the organization or two people, right? And there’s just not a whole lot of that organizational inertia to just pull you right over some of these roadblocks. You’re now dealing with your own money that you’re spending. It’s not the company’s money. It’s your money and it’s not a company’s time you’re wasting, it’s your time.

Jason: (09:58)
Right? Completely different animal. So in an organization, right? So you’re an employee, you’re going to get paid no matter what at the end of that week here in a small business solo, right? Huh? Totally different animal. Yeah. You were going to get paid a certain amount. Now this deal that you’ve just done that now you’ve got a double or triple your shipping costs. Yeah. Well you’re not going to take home as much this week, right? Cause now you’re spending it all on shipping. Okay. So anyway, I mean these are, these are very real issues and I just want to go ahead and offer these two tips to you. So you have that whole idea of setting expectations, right? Doing some mental management on that. Asking yourself, wow, eh, are my expectations realistic as I’m going into this? What are my expectations? Huh? Do I need to dial that back a little bit?

Jason: (10:47)
Do I just need to not have expectations at all? And would that be a bad thing? Okay, so that’s one one tool. The second tool is just understand on the good side [inaudible] as you make a breakthrough, it will end up presenting you with a whole new set of problems that is not bad. It is not unusual. It is simply the way things are. So now that you know kind of what you’re getting into or you know, um, yeah, you, you know that you will have things that come up that are unexpected. You simply need to interpret those in a way that’s going to be healthy and that’s going to allow you to come out of it with good, positive Headspace, right? Because when you’re in positive Headspace, you can make all kinds of progress on your business. When you get stuck in paralysis, self-hatred, a second guessing, you know, you name it.

Jason: (11:40)
When you get stuck in that loop of shame because you feel like you’re making bad decisions, it can just take you out. It can completely take you out. And here at renewable confidence. We will do everything we can to keep you in a positive head and to keep you thinking clearly and keeping you very productive in this business that you’re building in the business that you’re growing. So that’s it everyone. My name’s Jason Owens. If you like this material, heavens to Betsy, get yourself over to iTunes. Subscribe. I would love it if you would also go over to renewable confidence.com check out the signature program page. That is the signature program workshop, and it’s the thing that I love doing most. I love running workshops. There are tons of fun, and the people who attend get a lot out of it. I would love to have you part of the signature program, so go check it out and on that page you’ll see directions on how to get in touch with me if you’re interested. Art, everyone. Hope you guys have a great rest of your day. You take care of it and we’ll talk to you soon. Bye. Bye.

Posted on Thursday, Nov 21

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