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Selling is for the Stubborn

By Dr Paul E Adams |

A reader ask:

Dr Adams,

Selling scares me. When I cold call prospects rudeness and slamming the phone down upset me. If someone is especially nasty, I hate to make the next call. I thought I would enjoy the real estate business, could set my own hours work from home and I enjoy looking at homes. But the nastiness of some people have tarnished those good feelings and I now feel like I am imposing or some kind of leach when I make cold calls for listings. I am writing you as I am ready to quit, but giving up is not in my nature with most challenging. Nevertheless, telephone solicitation is beyond me now.

I have read a dozen books on salesmanship and know about not taking rejection personally, but my feelings still get hurt. Do you suppose I am trying to mix my personality with the wrong profession? I know you have helped others as I read your column each week and have learned much about the difficulties of small business. I hope you have some insight that will help me.

Albert K

Dr. Adam's reply:

You are not alone with your feelings. Like most beginners in solicitation selling getting used to no and no with hostility and rudeness is not easy, you must create an emotional shell around your inner feelings. It takes time and it takes courage with hard work, but over 90 percent of individuals who jump into sales thinking it is an easy way to make a buck with clean shirt and a Rolex beats work boots and time clocks quit after a few months.

I was introduced into the world of rejection as a college student selling house to house – and I was a flop at it. Like so many fearful beginners, I would try to second-guess which would be the easiest prospects. A waste of time and self-defeating.

Learning to sell is no so different from mastering many of the difficult tasks of life. How is your golf game? Rare is the individual that hits 300-yard drives down the center of the fairway without years of frustration and practice. Rare is the “natural who can shed the rejection and start the selling game breaking records.

Think of it this way, your success is based on the law of averages just as it is in sports from home runs to ‘birdies” they happen but only if you keep trying. The excitement is no one knows when the moment of truth will happen. Today, tomorrow next week, but as no one can repeal the law of averages that moment will happen.

Did you know that in the mail order business a 3% response is thought to be successful? In telephone cold calling, 5 to 10 % success rate is super. What you do not know will your next call or knock on the door be the winner? And there is only one way to find out

Ponder this statistic, over eighty percent of new salespersons fail within the first year, and over half of the eighty percent do so because of unrealistic expectations and the failure to suffer the learning curve. Unrealistic individuals have unreal expectations of the snaring the instant rewards of life without the pain and patience of delayed gratification. There is more than a grain of truth in the ages old expression “Good things come to those who wait."

My suggestion to you is don't quit now, but promise yourself you will make 200 more cold turkey calls with a minimum of 20 per day, and while doing so place a mirror on your desk and smile as you make each call. I think at the end of the 200 calls you will be a surprised individual – I have seen the change in many an impatient discouraged soul. You have invested this much time and effort so what is 200 more calls – nothing but the key to success. /

Canadian, Eh!

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