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Big, Advertising Specialties, Dallas, TX

On Taking “No” For An Answer

by Susan Morgan on October 24, 2015

We can all agree that no one likes to hear the word “No.” Business or personal it doesn’t matter, being denied something you’ve worked long and hard for is no easy thing. Most of us don’t take it very well.

consumer-reports-sales3That’s really not a problem unless you happen to be selling something. Then taking “No” for an answer had better be in your repertoire, or you’ll turn off a lot of potential customers. There are ways to make the most of a sales rejection, but you’d better, at you core, be capable of hearing (and understanding) the word “No”.

This most simple of skills was utterly beyond the capability of the salesman who presented a rather expensive product (replacement windows) to us recently. True his product was good, had lots to offer, including a hefty price tag. This gentleman made no secret of his astonishment when when we didn’t jump up and sign on the dotted line.

He could not seem to get past us leaving, “x amount of dollars on the table.”

Apparently not many people refuse him. Those windows were pretty good, but when you start to pressure I feel “sold” and I don’t like it. When selling, especially an expensive item in a tight economy, it’s a good idea to slip on your prospect’s shoes for a minute, maybe grow up and understand rejection of a product is not rejection of you.

“No” is not the end of the world (or your career in sales), but can also mean “Not now,” or “I’m not ready,” or “I need to digest, reassess and call you again.”

Here’s some great advice on overcoming the most common sales objections while not totally alienating the potential customer. Another tip I loved was to think of selling like dating. The prospect might not be interested right now, so you need to approach them in a different time and circumstance, with respect and courtesy. Don’t let the “No” offend or scare you, rather look at it as a “Not right now.”

If my window salesman had done this, he might have ended up selling us those windows. As it is, no sale, no future, no positive recommendation from me buddy.


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Susan Morgan
Creative, passionate and detailed, Susan brings 25-plus years professional writing experience to a variety of projects — get-noticed direct mail pieces, full line print catalogs, eye-catching color brochures and totally original. search engine friendly company blogs, web pages and online articles.

A lifelong love of storytelling has also produced a full-length novel (Out of the Ordinary published by booklocker in 2007). Susan continues to indulge her passion for fiction with a growing number of short stories (one an award winner in 2004, another in 2008) and finalizing a second novel.

In her spare time Susan enjoys gardening, studying astrology and tarot, being with family and friends and keeping up with politics and current events.

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