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Minimize Absentee Rejection

Rejection does not stem from the approval that we were denied by our customer, but rather from the approval we deny ourselves. When someone rejects you, what really happens is their rejection simply tempts us to reject ourselves.

The mere act of trying to control your feelings of rejection and frustration is useless. It just reinforces the power of rejection by the very assumption that it must be controlled and overcome. The big cause for rejection in sales is the belief I should not be rejected.

Ironically, you need to affirm rejection before you can hope to transcend it. As soon as you give yourself permission and make it okay to feel rejection, the sooner you will get over it. The longer you resist it, the longer it will persist. The consequences of rejection become a long-term problem when sales people start to over identify with it and start to create a sense of self from it. In other words, rejection becomes their stick.

Until you know you are the cause of all your feelings of rejection, all your business relationships and sales interactions will contain an undercurrent of unease and stress. When you feel rejection you feel a disconnect with your clients. It is critical to manage and try to minimize rejection, because when sales people feel rejected, they tend to stop trusting their customers and they are apt to shut down emotionally.

When you are the recipient of rejection it can feel like an aggressive act. However, when you choose to feel rejected you are promoting future acts of rejection. Everyone eventually acts out their frustrations on others. This can be very detrimental for sales people, because customers can be a very logical target. This is where rejection can be an endless, vicious cycle of a self-fulfilling prophecy.

To minimize the impact of getting rejected make "no" an upfront and accessible choice for your customers. When you get "nos" in the 11th hour, they are usually delivered with more punch, or worse yet, you never do get closure because your prospect never responds back to you (absentee rejection), and the rejection has the potential of leaving even a deeper imprint. Lack of closure causes many sales people to carry around unresolved negative baggage. So protect your self-concept by being realistic with your customers that any final decision with negative news is an acceptable answer and outcome. You are man enough to handle reality.

Too often the way most traditional sales people sell is with a sign firmly planted on their forehead that says; reject me, ignore me, use me. Their sales strategies inevitably lead too often to rejection because they have unrealistic expectations, they unconsciously pressure customers and they do not professionally disqualify customers before customers disqualify them.

Unrealistic attachment to positive outcomes and expectations are the greatest source of personal rejection, frustration and burnout in the sales profession. Remember this: We are only frustrated and discouraged by our own expectations, not someone else's reactions and responses. You will not find rejection and frustration until you go looking for it.

When you take a 100% responsibility posture that you are the only one that inherently rejects yourself, you then find out that you are the only one who can validate yourself. All of a sudden life becomes a lot more cleaner and easier when we realize that all the manic drama (extreme highs and extreme lows) we were experiencing in sales is for naught.

Richard Farrell is President of Tangent Knowledge Systems, a national sales development and training firm based in Chicago. He is the author of the upcoming book Selling has Nothing to do with Selling. He trains and speaks around the world and has authored many articles on his unique non-selling sales posture.

Phone: 773-404-7915
EMail: rfarrell@tangentknowledge.com
Web: http://www.tangentknowledge.com