If you’re anything like me, you can’t stand rejection. I mean, wouldn’t you rather be sought after, appreciated or at least tolerated by most people? Objection handling in sales is one of the hardest things for new sales reps to deal with. Here’s how it happens: You call a new prospect and in minutes, they shut you down. So you call someone else, and they shut you down. It hurts. After an hour or so of getting smacked down, you start to wonder if you are really cut out for this job. Maybe you just don’t have what it takes. Your tone starts to change. You become disheartened and your demeanor starts to darken. Maybe you don’t have the right personality for this? Maybe you need to rethink your job choice? Stop that. Go pour another cup of coffee and come back and read this.
Wanted: Professional Punching Bags – Must Bounce Back Quickly
Sales is one of the few jobs I know where you get exposed to undue amounts of rejection almost every day. Sorry if nobody told you about that. Some days I feel like one of those inflatable punching bags with the sand in the base. (Remember those? You hit them and hit them, and they just keep standing up, jeering at you..) The good news is, that you can learn to avoid letting objections and rejection get you down. Instead you can turn them around and use them to grow stronger and better at this game. Some people seem to adapt quicker, but everybody can do this. If you really want to, you can too. Here’s some ideas that have really played out in some recent wins for me:
Don’t Take It Personally
Some people just hate salespeople. Period. Somewhere along the line, they were done wrong and they will never forget it. It’s not your fault. Instead of taking it on the chin, try and learn from it. Ask Mr. grumpy pants what made him that way. Give him time to vent. You will understand what not to do next time. In fact, I have turned sales around and won deals by letting people rant and then segwaying to a conversation about the positive elements that are possible in their world. It’s almost as though they were not done grieving over some punch to the gut. Hear em’ out. Let them rant. Just don’t take it personally.
Objections Are Still Conversation, and Conversation is Possibility
Sales: Your job is not to talk to as many people as you can who like you. NO! Your job is to find the people who need what you have or what you do, help them acquire it and help them get value out of it. In complex sales, the only way you are going to do that is to have conversations where you can qualify the need, where they can see the value, and you can both reach an agreement on a transaction. Objections are just another way of continuing that conversation; of discerning value and qualifying need. Get your affirmation from family and friends, but stay on task with customers. It’s not about you. It’s about getting what you both need through those very relevant conversations.
Make Them An Offer They Can’t Refuse
After a while, you’ll notice you start to hear many of the same objections from different people. This is great because you can develop great answers to overcome them next time. Keep whittling down their objections and they will have no where to run to, nowhere to hide. In fact, many of them want what you are selling. They are just afraid that it’s not a good deal, or it’s not going to work the way it should, or some other disaster is going to make them regret this. Give them no place to hide. Meet every objection with a well thought-out answer and then just sit and wait. Let it process. Very often they will leave their shroud of doubt and join you on the common ground of business growth and opportunity. If not? Bounce. You can do this!