This week we’ve seen great success and great failure in our national elections. On Thursday in the MagicMethod Phone Sourcing Class Chat we’ll be continuing this week’s discussion on failure.

"The failure is mine, not yours." ~ John McCain, November 4, 2008

What do you think failure is?

One of Tuesday’s participants commented, “We all have business images to uphold, no one wants to be honest about the reality of our times.” Do you think that’s true?

Another said, “I think failure here can be looked at as not seeing the market changes, and adjusting accordingly.” What market changes are we seeing and what adjustments can we make?

Vincent Wright is asking, over on the Yahoo group “Linking and the Secret” if you need anyone's permission to "admit" to failure- thoughts? You can visit that discussion here.

Following are excerpts from Tuesday’s MagicMethod class – read them and if you have comments please remember to attend Thursday’s noon (EST) class here.
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12:00pm Maureen Sharib Today's subject is about failure...
12:01pm Sam Medalie we all have business images to uphold, no one wants to be honest about the reality of our times
12:02pm Tom Cook You only fail if you give up.
12:03pm Sam Medalie Tom Cook, why don't you tell us how much money you have made in the last 2 weeks
12:04pm Tom Cook Actually I had a good week last week. Got a call from a client I had not heard from since June. They gave me 4 days of work last week at $75/hr.
12:05pm Ed Baldwin What do we mean by "failure" in this session?
12:05pm Tom Cook My business is down almost 50% over the last 6 months - although I have to admit last year was a very good year.
12:07pm Sam Medalie I think failure is the inability to make a good living and thus you have to live off your own money in the bank
12:09pm Ed Baldwin I think failure here can be looked at as not seeing the market changes, and adjusting accordingly. I have noticed that candidates, and clients are not as responsive as they had been in the recent past, so what would anyone garner to be the reason(s)?
12:11pm Tom Cook With the state of the economy people are afraid to make a change even if they really want to. This is going to have a significant impact on our business for several months. Let's not lose sight of the fact that the long term outlook for our industry is still very good. The next 6 months are going to suck but if you like what you are doing and you stick it out - it will be worth it.Success or failure is all a state of mind. If you think you are going to fail, you probably will.
12:21pm Maureen Sharib What in our daily routines as sourcers would lead us to fail?
12:21pm Paul Davenport Right now, many don't even have a field to play on or a team to be a part of.Sourcing is a team sport...we are like the field goal kicker in football...often not celebrated but required to do our job extremely well when called on...we don't celebrate in the touchdown, etc.
12:24pm Maureen Sharib Failure carries a strong taboo-why?
12:25pm Tom Cook No one likes to fail or even admit that they failed
12:25pm Maureen Sharib Times like these see many people start businesses.
12:26pm Maureen Sharib Why don't they want to admit it Tom?
12:26pm Tom Cook Ego is part of it
12:27pm Maureen Sharib Why? Is it embarrassing?
12:27pm Paul Davenport Great Sourcer interview question, "Tell me about your most recent failure. What would you have done differently to achieve a better outcome?"
12:27pm Maureen Sharib So our parents expectations fuel some of this?
12:29pm Maureen Sharib I can't help but wonder if this fear of failure isn't somehow (if not wholly) tied up with materialism
12:29pm Julia Stone Because I think it breeds pat answers like.. “I took on too much work, or I spend too much time at work so I got divorced.”
12:29pm Tom Cook We all have a basic need to feel good about ourselves - failure makes it more difficult to do that.
12:30pm Maureen Sharib Julia - those answers have an element of blaming others in them. What if a candidate said, "I failed because I was an asshole and I had my priorities screwed up."
12:31pm Paul Davenport Nope...follow up with..."Wow...I like the honesty. What will you do in the future to make sure those things don't happen again?
12:33pm Maureen Sharib Really though, how many of us are capable of looking inwardly?
12:33pm Paul Davenport There is nothing wrong with a candidate who shares personal failure...however, I would steer the interview towards professional failure.
12:33pm Maureen Sharib But the two are so related Paul.
12:34pm Maureen Sharib As sourcers we're good at assessing motivation. Agree?
12:35pm Maureen Sharib What motivates others to give us the names...Dayna, I think you can "hear" when a gatekeeper responds to you positively... if you can't pick up these nuances I think you're lost.
12:38pm Paul Davenport Absolutely Sourcing requires great intuitive skills, whether naturally gifted or learned.
12:39pm Maureen Sharib It is intuitive. I don't think it can necessarily be "learned" but a natural tendency towards it can be mightily refined.
12:39pm Tom Cook I find that the longer I do this the better listener I have become.
12:40pm Maureen Sharib Good point Tom -are we all on the same page that great sourcers are extraordinary listeners?
12:41pm Maureen Sharib Is NOT listening one of the steps to failure?
12:41pm Tom Cook Once you learn to read between the lines of what is being said, this job becomes a lot easier.
12:44pm Tom Cook If you don't have a passion for this business - it's extremely difficult when the lean times come.
12:45pm Maureen Sharib I agree Tom. It's what makes you seek other and better and more productive ways.
12:46pm Sam Medalie if times are lean, and you aren't paying the bills, you should quit and do something more productive in a different field
12:47pm Maureen Sharib Sam, I think you should quit ONLY WHEN you don't want to do something any longer. I know it sounds harsh.
12:48pm Sam Medalie If you can't pay the bills, you should quit and find something more productive
12:48pm Maureen Sharib Sam, part of this class seems to be abt what can be done to avoid failure.
12:48pm Tom Cook The tone of their voice will tell you as much about their interest as what they are actually saying.
12:48pm Maureen Sharib "If you can't pay the bills, you should quit and find something more productive." You keep saying that Sam.
12:52pm Maureen Sharib Do you think personality types key into failure rates?
12:52pm Julia Stone yes, I also think that not being true to your personality type will cause failure. Trying to appease the few who can't stand you, why bother?
12:52pm Maureen Sharib Do you think people who are morose are less likeable (thereby probably doing less commerce in the business world) than people who are cheerful?
12:53pm Maureen Sharib What if you have a problematic personality type?
12:54pm Maureen Sharib How do you know when you have a problematic personality?
12:55pm Maureen Sharib If you have a lot of personal "issues", trouble getting along w/others, trouble in business -do you think it might be time to "take stock"?
12:56pm Maureen Sharib FEAR OF FAILURE What causes it?
12:56pm Maureen Sharib Parents?
12:56pm Recruiting Animal The possibility of failure
12:56pm Maureen Sharib Lack of self-esteem?This article suggests it's a self esteem issue.
12:59pm Tom Cook At this point in my life my definition of success is much different than it was 20 years ago.
12:59pm Maureen Sharib Should we all do some homework (and thinking) on this and continue it on Thursday?
1:00pm Sam Medalie how about paying your bills--that is a sign you aren't a failure
1:00pm Maureen Sharib Interesting TOM -let's talk about changing values, too.
1:00pm Maureen Sharib Okay, let's talk about that too Sam. Paying your bills. But I think what we're talking about is deeper than that but will take care of that, in the long run...
1:01pm Sam Medalie good luck in the coming deep recession
1:01pm Maureen Sharib Understanding I think is what we're chasing here...
1:01pm Maureen Sharib LOL Sam.
1:01pm Maureen Sharib We all need luck Sam. But before we need THAT we need to be prepared.
1:02pm Sam Medalie I was being facetious
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Read the whole chat here.

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