“NO.” It’s a powerful word.
Or is it? In reality, “no” is only powerful because of the meaning that we give to it.
When we work with entrepreneurs and sales teams who hate sales, there’s an underlying fear of ”no”. We know this, because when we ask attendees at our workshops the following question, we get to identify the underlying resistance…
If we could guarantee that every single person you asked for a sale said “yes,” how many people would you ask?
It can be hard as a founder to have sales conversations, because asking people to commit to your product, service or skill when it’s yours — based on your idea, capabilities, design, effort, sweat, blood and (possibly) tears means that when someone says “no” in any guise whether it’s a “we don’t have any money for that,” “we don’t want to spend that much,” “I don’t think that would help us,” or even a “not now,” we can misinterpret “no” as any or all of the following:
- “You’re wrong”
- “I don’t think your product or service is any good”
- “I don’t think you’re any good”
- “I don’t like you”
- “I don’t like your product”
- “You are wasting your time”
- “You’re silly”
- “No one’s going to give you money for that”
- “You’re not good enough”
The reality? It’s not a rejection, and it’s certainly not personal. Yet so many people make it personal, based on concerns, worries and that nagging voice in their head. Linking a “no” from someone you don’t even know to your internal worries will only keep you where you are.
And the truth? If you’re doing what you believe in, have a vision to which you want to commit, then you need to own it. You need to have an unshakable confidence to play bigger, to step out of your comfort zone and to take Mark Cuban’s adage: “Every no gets me closer to a yes.” And to stop taking “no” personally.