If you are in sales, you have heard “No” many times over. There have been hundreds of sales training programs that are focused on dealing with rejection. Many of these are based on clarifying what “no” actually means to the client and then focusing on solving that issue. Here are just a few of the reasons for hearing “no.”
- I don’t understand.
- I am not the decision maker.
- Now is not a good time.
- Your price is too high.
- You don’t have what I need.
- I don’t trust you.
So, I am definitely a proponent of digging deeper to make sure that the client is getting the best experience, price and product. And I agree that when your client tells you “no,” it is possible to turn that into an eventual “yes.” But what I don’t get is why anyone would accept the idea that they should hear “no” so often. If you hear “no” for any of the reasons above, it’s because you screwed up somewhere. Most of the time it is because you talked too much, your prospect talked too little and you have no understanding of what motivates this person to buy. If you are friendly and likeable, the result of this is probably “No for Now.”
Why so much “no”? Because sales training is too focused on the product. If sales is focused on the client, and you are a good salesman, you can understand your client so well that you may never hear the word “no.” Don’t believe me? I can’t even remember the last time I got a “no” in a client meeting. I strive to understand the client to the extent that I will not even ask them to buy if I know I cannot help them in a significant way. I typically don’t have ask them to buy at all because my clients and I are on the same team and we are pursuing the solution together. To be fair, I hear “no” enough at home from my wife that I have strived to eliminate the word from my work day. Thank you honey, you have made me the man I am today.
What about “No Forever?” Most salespeople do not know when “no forever” has happened to them or why. Here are a few reasons for “no forever.”
- You pushed a product that made no sense or the price was too high and the client found something much better somewhere else.
- You were rude or crass.
- You got a bad review from a former client.
- You didn’t do what you said you would do.
- You smell, ask dumb questions, sound like an idiot.
- You oversell.
The main reason for a “no forever” is when the client has a profoundly great buying experience with someone else. You will never get that client back.