He almost talked himself out of it…
A few weeks ago one of my coaching clients had traveled to the Big Apple on what was designed to be a reconnaissance mission.¬† The goal was to scout out the right location for a customer and client reception party that was going to take place in conjunction with big media conference going on at the Jacob Javits Center in July.
He owns a mid size media production company here in Denver that produces some absolutely amazing digital work.¬† I’m not going to mention the name of the company but you have seen their work on Discovery, History, and several other cable channels.
We’ll my client felt that as long as he was going to be in New York he might as well see if he can set up a few meetings with some of the networks headquartered there.¬† As a result of his efforts he was able to schedule several meetings… turning his recon mission into a full fledged business trip.¬† He arrived in NY with a day and a half to spare before the first meeting so he could relax and do some scouting along with his assistant.
What happened that first day took him by surprise and almost sent him packing.¬† He found himself looking out the window of his 34th story hotel window at the biggest and most intimidating city on the planet with his thoughts turning to the belief that he was from the small “cow town” of Denver.¬†¬† He began thinking about all the big players in Manhattan who do similar work to what his company does.¬† With those thoughts his little inner voice began to present doubts about his ability to compete with the big dogs in the Big Apple.¬† Those doubts soon manifested into full blown fears.¬† He could feel his heart beginning to race and palms sweat as looked out at the skyscrapers filled with competitors seeking only to make him look like an amateur fool… or so he thought.
Have you ever had one of those moments when you doubted yourself and your ability and maybe even thought everybody else had the advantage over you?¬† Have you ever felt a little small when compared to the competition?¬† I sure have!
Although his company already had several established successes in their portfolio he himself was feeling very small and insignificant at that moment.¬† A man of action, he picked up the phone to call his first appointment and CANCEL.¬† He had already worked out in his mind the reason why he couldn’t make the appointment and was convinced that they would understand.¬† The phone on the other end rang and as the receptionist gave her hello greeting, he hesitated for a moment and then hung up the phone.
Understanding the importance of “state change” from our coaching he got up through on his running shoes and went over to Central Park to pump some oxygen into his blood thirsty gray matter.¬† While he was running he began to “reframe” his thoughts, review his past successes, and muster the courage needed to face the Goliath.
The next day he met with the network executive and they hit it off, as the Brits would say, “smashingly.”¬† As it turned he was also from Denver and had several other things in common with my client.¬† The first meeting was a success as were the following three meetings.
He shared this story with me for the first time yesterday some two months later because just yesterday he received a call from the the executive from Denver who he met with in New York.¬† Evidently overcoming his fears and doubts and taming that little inner voice paid off.¬† He was contracted for a new television advertising campaign with hundreds of thousands of dollars but more importantly he opened the door to a relationship that may turn out to be worth millions.
…But it almost didn’t happen.