Fear of sales rejection – myth or reality?


The number one excuse I continue to hear from sales people for not prospecting enough continues to be “fear of rejection”.  Am I missing something here? You have chosen to be in sales and you have chosen the rejection business! I bet that in interviews for sales positions, no one said they have a  “fear of rejection” and are therefore  afraid of hearing the word no.


Be rejected more for increased success

In order to sell more, you need to be rejected more…let that sink in for a moment. Not everyone you call and see is going to say “yes” and there can be many reasons why not – happy with their current supplier, don’t believe there is a need, too expensive, no budget etc.


A simple example:  Sales person A,

  • calls 30 companies,
  • makes 6 meetings,
  • does 3 proposals and
  • closes 1 deal.

In getting to that 1 yes they had to hear 29 No’s.


Double your sales, double the amount of no’s you get. Please note, better targeting and improving your “message” will also increase the number of Yes’s


One of the biggest issues is that for too long sales people have confusing rejection with objections. I believe that up to 95% of perceived rejections are actually objections. The better prepared you are to engage around objections, the better your results!


You are in the sales business and sales is, and will always be, the asking business.

The more you ask the more you get, both no’s and yes’s! Your sales results are mostly determined by the amount of asking you are doing every day, week and month. Ask for the meeting, discovery questions, clarifying questions, urgency questions, budget questions, closing questions and much more.  You need to go and do what your parents warned you about… TALK TO STRANGERS AND ASK THEM QUESTIONS!

The less you ask, the less you get, the more you suffer and then you go and “suffer” for yet another company.


So is fear of rejection real or a myth?


There are some people who struggle with low self-esteem and confidence, both about themselves, their company and products. They worry more about what others say than being successful and they will always struggle in a sales role. Simple and direct advice, change your mindset or get out of sales.


I believe that for most using this excuse, the real reason is laziness and lack of personal desire. If I was to offer all these people R1000 for every call made (regardless of the outcome), the fear of rejection would magically disappear for most because the desire / reward for them is now worth any potential rejection in their minds. Simple and direct advice for these people – raise your game, do the job that you are being paid for and start to create more success or get out of sales.


To those of you who take responsibility, accountability and ownership of both your role requirements and results, I salute you! Let’s keep the sales profession for those who are willing to act professionally.


Have a great month!


**For more on this topic and to see Mark live on stage, join us for the SalesGuru Live Events across the country next week… info@salesguru.co.za 



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