Is the fear of selling holding you back?
Most people have an instinctive fear of salespeople. Why is that? It’s because we don’t trust them. They do a lot of telling and selling without listening. We feel like all they want to do is push their products and services onto us so they get paid a commission. We have the perception salespeople don’t care if their product or service is right for us – it’s more about them making money – sometimes at our expense.
Soooooo…. we don’t want to sell our products and services for fear of being tainted with this same perception. Perception is Reality.
We are all salespeople!
The interesting thing is, we are all salespeople. We have to sell our ideas all the time.
Children are particularly good at it – “but mom, I really need that toy?” Think about the Girl Guide successfully selling cookies each year. Think about spouse convincing you they need new shoes, new clothes, new power tools or even a car or a boat. Then there’s the friend who convinces you to go read a book they loved or buy a particular car. We convince others all the time yet we don’t think of ourselves as being salespeople.
In the workplace, we have to sell our ideas all the time, whether it’s new software, sell a need for additional staff, propose a new process, gain additional resources or even develop a new product or service. The difference is, when we ask for these things in the work environment we don’t feel like we are selling. We don’t feel like we are a salesperson. We feel like we are asking for these things for the right reasons and that is to help the business become more successful or to improve processes which will help make our jobs easier.
What’s wrong with convincing others to do something we really believe in? Why wouldn’t you want to persuade people to buy your products and services if you really believe in them? So why don’t we like to sell?
Mostly because we have a fear of selling!
1. Fear of selling
If you are new to sales or just started your own business, chances are you are the one that has to bring in the business. You are the one who has to sell your products and services. Unless you have the budget to employ a professional salesperson, chances are you are going to have to learn how to sell like a pro whether you want to or not.
We don’t like to sell because in our mind we have a preconceived idea of what being a salesperson is. We tend to think of them as being pushy, shrewd, cunning, controlling and a bunch of other adjectives. In other words, we have already made up our mind that sales is not an honorable profession. So we fear having to sell. We don’t want to be perceived as a pushy salesperson trying to stitch people up with products and services they don’t need or want.
What if we could turn that on its head? What if – instead of trying to sell – you help people buy instead!
Selling is more about attitude than anything else.
It’s also about self-belief and a belief that your products and services will genuinely help others resolve a problem or realize an opportunity. If you believe you can’t sell – you are right. If you believe you can sell – you are also right. It’s a self-fulfilling prophecy known as the Attitude Cycle.
If you genuinely help others through the provision of your products and services, how is that a bad thing? It’s not. Selling is about integrity, honesty and sincerity without which there is no trust and confidence. So the first thing you need to change is how you think about selling which essentially is your attitude and self-belief. If you conduct your business with honesty, and integrity and you genuinely help people by providing products and services that resolve customer problems or help them realize opportunities, then that has to be a good thing – right! So be proud to sell your products and services. Be proud to be a salesperson.
2. Fear of rejection
The second reason we don’t like selling is the fear of rejection. Let’s face it – no one likes being rejected for any reason let alone in a sales environment. The funny thing about rejection, is that when you learn to become more accomplished as a salesperson, you begin to experience rejection less and less as time goes by. The reason why – is that you learn the right skills of what to do, and what not to do.
If you are new to sales and you haven’t got the buying and selling process (Bi-Sell-Cycle™) down pat, then naturally you will make some rookie mistakes that will lead to rejection. The important thing to remember is that they are not rejecting you, they are most likely rejecting your products and services because either they don’t have a need (yet), they don’t have a relationship with you (yet) or they don’t see the value in what you have to offer (yet).
As you become more experienced and understand how people buy and you know how to qualify prospects and find their needs, you will then start to experience more successes than rejection.
3. You don’t have a formula to follow
Most businesses have a business plan. Sports teams have a game plan. Successful salespeople following a plan as well – it’s called a sales process. By following a simple process like the Bi-Sell-Cycle™, you are likely to significantly increase your results. By not following a sales process, you are leaving the outcome to chance.
If you were planning to drive across country, no doubt you would refer to a map and plot the route you wanted to take. You wouldn’t leave things to chance, unless you are an adventurer and don’t care where you end up. You wouldn’t want to take that kind of chance in business as you would risk bankruptcy. Yet this is how many people approach sales. I call it the shotgun effect which is a hit and miss strategy approaching prospects hoping you will make a sale. This is the fastest way to rejection so it’s this fear that’s holding you back.
Doesn’t it make sense that instead of leaving things to chance, you actually follow a sales process that is far more likely to keep you on track and grow your business? Following a sales formula like the Bi-Sell-Cycle™ when meeting with a new prospect greatly increases your chances of successfully concluding a sale. Having a formula to follow is the map that guides you through the buying and selling process.
Imagine trying to ride a bicycle with only one wheel. You won’t go very far. Imagine riding a bicycle with no frame, the wheels will fall off. Imagine riding a bicycle with a flat tire. Sure you can move forward but at what pace.
The Bi-Sell-Cycle™ is like riding a bike. The front wheel is how the buyer operates, and the back wheel is how the salesperson operates. Both wheels must turn together to achieve a successful outcome. When the wheels don’t turn together, that’s when the sales process stalls or falls over. What holds the wheels of the Bi-Sell-Cycle™ together is the framework. The frame of the Bi-Sell-Cycle™ is made up of all your communication skills like building rapport, effective listening and asking the right questions. Your communication skills keep you moving forward in the sales process?
If you have a fear of selling, it’s mostly because you haven’t learned how to sell properly, yet!
On a final note
If you develop your communication skills and follow a sales process, you will overcome the fear of selling, sell more, more often and experience greater success.
In A Nutshell
The only way to overcome the fear of selling and the fear of rejection, is to learn sales skills. This greatly increases your confidence levels leading you to achieve better outcomes.
- Develop a positive attitude towards selling
- Build trust and confidence by developing your communication skills
- Keep the wheels turning forward by matching buying behavior with a sales process