By Jeff Shore
We are sales professionals, and therefore we very much love three letters: Y-E-S. Is there a sweeter sound than that of a hard-earned “yes” at end of a sales presentation? I think not.
The converse, of course, is also true. The word “no” is like a dagger in the heart. The word falls upon us as if weighing two tons, and we are Wile E. Coyote under its crushing weight.
But it doesn’t have to be that way. All we need to do is study the typical 5-year-old.
Little kids are selectively deaf. Their tiny brains are simply not capable of hearing the word “no.”
Kid: “Daddy, can I have candy”?
Kid: “I’ll be good.”
Kid (with an impish grin): “Mommy would say ‘yes’.”
As sales professionals we can actually learn quite a bit from that 5-year-old. The response from the father/prospect was “no,” but what did the child hear? Seriously, how did the kid interpret that simple word?
The child hears “no.” The child interprets it as “not yet.”
That’s huge. What if sales professionals could train their brains to do the same thing. What if they could develop that mantra: No = Not Yet.
It makes sense, when you think about it. Suppose the customer says “no” when you ask for the sale. We can still make a critically obvious observation: that customer is still there.
The customer did not simply say no, turn around and stomp off, never to be seen again. The prospect is still standing in front of you.
The “no” was really a “not yet.” And the “not yet” could be interpreted further as “help me.”
That’s really what a “no” is – a plea for help.
What kind of impact could you have if you changed your thinking and simply applied a “not yet” attitude in your own presentation?
Be a kid. Get stubborn. Become deaf to the word “no” and interpret it as, “not yet.” And then you can change your customer’s world.