How To Sell Show

HTSS195 - How to reframe rejection in sales - Scott Sylvan Bell

December 22, 2021

Reframing rejection in sales 

Rejection is a common conversation in the sales world, most salespeople are not ready to dig in and have the tough conversation. There are sales trainers and sales managers not prepared to discuss what salespeople go through. As a salesperson, you should always be willing to increase your knowledge in and around rejection. 

Your need for approval can lead to rejection 

Deep down inside we all want approval from someone. You can want approval from people you know and even people you have never met. This "need" for approval can amplify you feelings around rejections. You may find yourself in a state of panic from not having deals closed because of a lack of approval. Who are you looking for approval from:

  • Friends
  • Family
  • Co-workers
  • Coaches / mentors
  • The world

Your search for approval from strangers 

You may be searching for approval from strangers and not even know it. This approval can feel like a dopamine rush. Rejection from sales is real and rejection in sales hurts. If you look for the ability to beat the feelings of rejection you need to know the formula for it. There are 6 elements to the feeling of rejeciton:

  • Time
  • Effort
  • Energy
  • Risk
  • Money
  • Reputation

What you need to know is the formula for rejection is also the formula for regret when action isn't taken. Shame plays a part in the sales process as well. When you have shame you ignore others and forget to ask for help. You have to be able to reframe what you are going through. You get rejected all of the time and don’t think about it:

  • Stop lights
  • Grocery store
  • Specials / sell outs / discontinued items

You don’t put weight to these items, its part of life, there is no real consequence for getting the rejection.

Other industries face rejection all of the time 

Look to other professions and services when trying to see who else faces rejection. There are multiple people and or industries that face just as much or more rejection as sales. There are professionals that get eviscerated by producers:

  • Dancers – broadway / Vegas
  • Actors
  • Musicians

A good movie to watch about the abuses from coaches and rejection is Whiplash. Part of your sales mindset matters when closing deals and overcoming rejection. You meet with a buyer and you perform.  It's not a sales call it’s a performance is a good way to think about this.  When you put in the effort not hearing back from your the buyer can hurt. It's about the accolades we get from friends and family members. You are vulnerable to a phantom critique because you got ghosted. Rejection can hurt more than most people know. 

Rejection is part of sales and always will be 

When you meet with a buyer you are putting it all on the line for 1 or 2 words of approval, this is a disproportionate amount of work for the most part… at least from your view. The buyer has risks as well.  We all have someone we answer to, they have an agenda.

  • If you are struggling in your personal life professional rejection hurts
  • When you are not making money professional rejection hurts
  • If you have emotional issues professional rejection hurts
  • If you need approval from others in the form of a closed deal-professional rejection hurts

Love and request can lead to rejection 

In the business world, buyers adopt a protective device and its to be hard on salespeople, this is a defense mechanism for their role as a buyer – some noncommercial buyers do this and you need to see it for what it is.

Things you can watch rejection in real time / sort of

  • Live sales presentations
  • Guys hitting on women
  • Shark tank
  • The voice / Americas got talent / American Idol – Similar shows

Ways you can get past rejection:

  • Get help from a pro
  • Talk to someone
  • Keep a journal
  • Know that there is a learning process to sales
  • Get some exercise
  • Go and laugh – watch 2 – 5 minutes of comedy before and after a sales call
  • Donate time to a charity

The reframes:

You will need to reframe rejection. "This is what I do" becomes a mantra. Average salespeople get 1:3, good salespeople get 1:1 and closers get 75% of their deals. It's all about the work you put in / you get what you put in – practice, work, reading, role play, classes.   

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