For day 34 I asked If I could make an announcement over the loud speakers at Whole Foods. I told them I was a fan of the company and wanted to show my appreciation over an announcement. This challenge was inspired by Jia Jiang’s Make Announcement on a Southwest Flight rejection challenge.
Here’s the poorly filmed video:
Filming note: I’ve made many attempts to film covertly, and most don’t turn out well. I just learned about Jia Jiang’s filming method. I was trying to figure this out forever! Next time, I can try this.
Was It Uncomfortable?
More than I expected. Since doing these challenges, I’m hyper aware of how I’m coming off when I do the the rejection therapy challenges. I’ve learned that the more uncomfortable or strange I come off, the more uncomfortable the other person becomes. Which make me less likely to get a yes.
I needed to seem like a comfortable confident person, who just wants to make an announcement. And not like a weirdo. Just a normal person with a weird idea. Because a weirdo is unpredictable and the employees aren’t going to agree to let an unpredictable customer make an announcement.
I went through 4 employees, each one more senior than the next. The last employee, the most senior, told me they don’t use the P.A system. So I couldn’t make my announcement. But she liked that I wanted to show appreciation for the store. Either that, or she was humoring a weirdo.
She showed me where I could leave a comment. So I did. I left a compliment, but I also made a suggestion for them to stock cold Zevias.
What Did I Learn?
I learned that these small rejection therapy challenges still make me nervous. I thought this small request would be a piece of cake after donning paper bags and a sign that said I was a criminal. But rejection challenges make you deal with people face to face. It’s more than just handling judgement. They put your social skills on trial. I’d like to keep doing them until I’m no longer nervous.
When I was more nervous the employees were more unsure of the situation. Stay calm when asking for something. If you’re calm, it reassures them everything’s ok.
What’s great about doing rejection therapy on employees is that they have to be nice to you. So it’s a little easier. It can be a good training ground for the real deal: strangers who aren’t paid to be nice to you.