The Red Door
- October 11, 2018
- Posted by: dataadmin
- Category: motivation
When I was younger, our school would host a giftwrapping fundraiser every year. The school would give all of the students catalogues of wrapping paper, and we would go out and try to sell to friends, family, and neighbors. The funds we raise would go to a charitable cause and the students would win amazing prizes for helping.
For some reasons, even though I was a shy kid, I always did very well this time of the year. Over the course of a few years, I had built up some pretty loyal customers in my neighborhood. So i decided that my fifth grade year was foing to be the year I finished number one in the contest and won the top prize.
I had an entire plan of action.
I had done the math as to how i would become number one. As long as my usual customers bought from me, I had a great chance at being the top salesman. In my mind, all I need to do was show up.
Unfortunately, my plans started shattering the moment I knocked on my first door.
Within the first hour, I had been up one entire street in my neighborhood and not one of my past customers had bought from me. They all courteously declined. It made no sense! Not even one person wanted to help out a little fifth grader? What was going on?
I had knocked on at least eight or nine doors and had long and pleasant conversations, but every single person said no.
I remember standing there after the last rejection, completely deflated. My plan was shot, and there was literally no chance of me winning the top prize.
If I wasn’y going to win, what was the point continuing?
I was just about to turn around and retreat back to my house with my head hung low in self-pity when, suddenly, something bright in the distance caught my attention..
I saw the house with the red door.
They were the new neighbors. They’d just moved in, and the entire neighborhood was talking about how they had painted their front door and shutter this hideous bright red, I stood there looking at the house with the red door and figured, “why not goover and try? I’m here anyway. Maybe I can meet the new neighbors. Plus it’s embarrassing that I have zero sales, so let’s see if I can get at least something.”
I knocked on the red door and a very nice lady with a huge smile opened the door. I can still remember her kind face and sweet voice. I said, “Hi, I’m from the local elementary school and I’m selling gift wrapping paper. I was wondering if you would like to buy some?”
I couldn’t believe what happened next.
As it turned out, this lady volunteered at the local church and had recently been tasked with buying all the wrapping paper the church needed for the Christmas season. Even though the wrapping paper I was selling was more expensive that what was available at the local market, she bought 25 rolls on the spot!
During the walk back from her house to mine I remember thinking, “Now what if i had quit? I stood right here thinking of turning back. But just because I knocked on more door, look what happened!
So, the lesson to learn?
Every house that said no before the red door got me closer to a yes. Every time someone said no, the probability the next person said yes went up.
I never forgot that lesson and, as it turns out, many before me have learned the same lesson too.
Hope you also did?