How Can Entrepreneurs Handle Rejection

Instead of being dejected because of a rejection, entrepreneurs should know how to handle it well

learn more about Sanchita Dash

By Sanchita Dash


You're reading Entrepreneur India, an international franchise of Entrepreneur Media.

Entrepreneurship is not an easy boat to be in. Right when you think you are sailing through smooth waters, the waves come high and mighty and often topple you over.

Setbacks are strewn across the road in an entrepreneur's journey. When you are running your own startup, be it your product launch or an investor pitch, rejection is not uncommon.

However, instead of being dejected because of a rejection, entrepreneurs should know how to handle it well.

Entrepreneur India spoke to startup founders about how can one handle rejection and take it in the right stride.

Gives You a Reality Check

A lot of times, entrepreneurs are stuck in a bubble that their idea is perfect. Well, all of it until a third party bursts their bubble. Kartik Hajela, Co- founder & Vice President, Log 9 materials believes that rejection is important for an entrepreneur, or for that matter any professional. "It gives you a reality check. For entrepreneurs, the attachment that is built between them and their product becomes so strong that it becomes difficult for them to face the practical weaknesses or issues associated with the same," he said.

Ask Questions

In the Indian entrepreneurial scenario, rejection will often come your way. But it's how you handle it, that will make the difference. Umesh Thota, founder, Authbase said that it's important to keep a positive outlook even when you are rejected. It's crucial that once you are rejected, you rise back up. "Any kind of investment will almost always be a no at first. But remember to ask why. There could be a hundred different reasons why your idea is cancelled but if you know why it got rejected first then you can solve the issue and then get back," he said.

Pushes You Towards a Fresh Start

Hajela further added that rejection by a third person, be it an investor who dumps you because of your business model or a customer who rejects your product because of some or the issue gives you a practical feedback to make a fresh start or just improvising on your current model to create the next big thing. "The key in this I believe is getting up with the same enthusiasm and even more and not falling back. In Log 9 Materials (a product-based venture and moreover in a field like nanotechnology) Akshay, the founder, and I have seen the trenches quite often. Be it not being called back by investors or our product being rejected by potential customers, we have fallen back quite some time," he said.

The setbacks actually helped them improvise, iterate upon their offerings and develop the solution which could be well accepted. "Still the journey of rejection and improvisation doesn't end, neither for us nor I believe for any entrepreneur who dreams of making it big," he said.

Assess the Rejection

Facing rejection is integral to the life of an entrepreneur, especially during the early days. Whether its rejection from investors or industry experts or even random individuals one has to meet along the way in the journey. Kinshuk Kocher, Co- founder, BD & Finance, CAREDOSE, said, "We were rejected by people who told us that the online pharmacy market is saturated and therefore we are too late. We believe that firstly the "rejection" needs to be assessed internally. If it makes sense, then it should be absorbed and changes should be made accordingly, if relevant,"

Kocher added that if it doesn't make sense, which does happen a lot as sometimes people comment on products/services without truly understanding what they are about, then it should not be taken to heart but ignored and one should just move on. To add to this, there is a difference between ignoring and ignorance, which should be kept in mind.

Sanchita Dash

Entrepreneur Staff

Former Senior Correspondent, Entrepreneur India

In the business of news for 5 years now. Making my way across India thanks to my career. A media graduate from Symbiosis, Pune, I have earlier worked with Deccan Chronicle (South India's leading English daily), T-Hub (India's largest incubator) and Anthill Ventures (a speed-scaling platform). 

Stories, movies and PJs are my thing. 

If you hear 'The Office' opening score randomly, don't worry it's just my phone ringing. 


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