Rejection is an interesting topic. Many folks pursuing a career in sales (which includes everybody) feel that they must acquire a thin skin to withstand the many times they will soon be “rejected.” I would like to dispel this “myth” and put a different spin on it. Here me out.
Picture yourself in New York City on a Saturday morning. The sun is shining, and it is a perfect 72 degrees. Life is grand. You are feeling good. And you have a full day to “enjoy” before meeting a friend for a mid-afternoon cocktail at the Plaza Hotel.
You spot a woman on the corner with four suitcases and three small children tugging at her skirt. She’s trying to get her entourage to cross the street as soon as the light turns green. Being of sound mind and strong body, and in no particular hurry, you approach the woman and politely ask if you can be of assistance.
Possible Reaction #1: You appear to be a godsend. She appreciates this unsolicited sign of kindness. You feel good about yourself having helped this family safely across the street.
Possible Reaction #2: She gives you a questioning look, pulls her children close, and fires back a terse and unappreciative refusal. In so many words, she says: “Buzz off, creep, or I’ll call the cops.”
How would you feel and react to this “rejection?” I’ll tell you what you would do if you were a confident professional with the appropriate dosage of self-esteem flowing through your veins: You would start whistling a happy tune and continue on your way unaffected one way or the other. I’ll tell you what you wouldn’t do. You would not try to talk this woman into accepting your offer to help.
Many sales courses will tell you to keep a stiff upper lip when you are rejected and don’t let it get you down. But once you accept the proposition that you have been rejected, you have given up the psychological high ground and put your self- esteem into retreat. Simply put, you need to reject the notion of rejection.
Once you understand that all you are trying to do as a salesperson is help people, every outcome should be the same. If prospects don’t want your help or choose not to deal with you, for whatever reason they conjure up in their minds, it is not your problem.
You simply have to be on the lookout for another opportunity to be of assistance.
The average salesperson can’t seem to come to terms with this. They let prospects alter their emotions, personality, and feelings toward life. This makes no sense.
Regardless of the response, you are the same person with the same amount of product knowledge, experience, and competence – and the same objective: to feed your family on a regular basis by finding people you can help. Don’t tell me it is more complicated than this… because I am not buying it. After thirty years of flailing away at this business, it finally dawned on me that the people who decided to do business with me simply said “Yes,” while the others simply said “No,” (or in many cases, “Not yet”).
Bottom Line: Would-be clients are not rejecting you. Stop flattering yourself.
Mike Marchev is always looking for a few more proactive travel professionals to join his Sales and Marketing Club. Send for details.