A business outtake from The Spark List – The Mansplainer
As an entrepreneur, you must be careful with your time. You cannot allow someone else to steal an hour of your day. You must spend your time where there is a relevant offer in both directions. You have to work with people who can be great clients, partners, and collaborators. Don’t waste your time with people who aren’t going to bring value to your business!
Recently, Lolita and I found ourselves on a pretty funny but somewhat shocking phone call. We thought we were going to have a conversation with someone who had visited our site, reviewed our launch strategy, seen our media kit and understood that we were at the inception of our business. I set the conversation for a Friday at 5:30 PM because we both felt like it was a big priority. In pursuing launch brand partners, we always have to be hunting! That’s part of the job of being an entrepreneur in the publishing space. You take all calls.
Then, it went terribly, mansplainer-y, wrong. Watch what happened here!
He went on…. and on… and we could not get a word in edgewise while he literally told Lolita and I what we actually do for a living …..
After about five minutes, after I interrupted twice to ask if he’d been to our site and if he had any idea what we were focused on. He returned to his own monologue. So, I had to just cut him off. It was pretty simple, I said “NAME OMMITTED, I don’t think we need to continue this conversation.” I was polite and expressed that we understood what he had accomplished and felt that it was not the right alignment with our business. I was also firm when he called me sweetheart and told me I’d be missing out. Nope, NAME OMMITTED, I don’t think this will be a sensible collaboration.
So What’s Our Spark List Takeaway?
Instead of being offended, which is a waste of time. Lolita and I belly laughed about the experience. It was so perfectly absurd and a brilliant opportunity to share the reality of being a female entrepreneur. The best part of cutting this person off after about four minutes of his “in the olden days” spiel was realizing that there is absolutely no need to be small about what we need or want.
We DON’T need to waste time with someone who hadn’t thought to look at our site and recognize that stories about firearms and the current president were absolutely inappropriate brand integration ideas. What we DO need are brand partners who want to join in helping us reach the 60% of the population who are pursuing independent careers as independent contractors, consultants, and entrepreneurs.
- There will always be challenges in a working environment with people who have different values, priorities, and goals – it is imperative that you are clear on yours.
- Keep room to learn from people who want to offer good information that is relevant to your business. You don’t know it all – but remember, you do know some. Be conscientious about who you let into your head.
- If you have a partner, make sure you two are in agreement and able to communicate if anything changes about your perspective of the business.
- While you can’t expect people to know a huge amount about your business before you first meet, it is inappropriate for someone who is “selling you something” to not have visited your site or come up with a relevant pitch.
- And perhaps, most important of all – It’s always ok to interrupt a mansplainer.