Despite natural skills, training, and experience, every sales professional will face rejection at some point. Although during training sessions, we learn and teach that rejections are inevitable, they still hurt.
Frequent rejections can shake your confidence significantly. Rejections are a normal part of sales, and handling these successfully is a skill every salesperson needs to learn. If you are to survive and thrive in the sales field, you definitely need resilience.
Join us as we unravel the secrets behind resilience in sales, and explore how we can transform challenges into opportunities through unwavering determination.
How the Human Brain Reacts to Rejection
The findings of a research study suggest that the human brain responds to rejection in the way it does to physical pain. Apparently, to the brain, rejection is similar to pain. The fMRI machine that was monitoring the brain activity of the people in the study showed some astonishing results. When people felt rejected, a part of the brain called the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) lit up. This part of the brain usually responds to physical pain. The other surprising thing was that, in some people, subsequently another part lit up and quashed the signal from the ACC. This other part of the brain helps people cope and solve problems. Interesting, isn’t it?
Here are some key takeaways for us from this study
- It is normal to feel the hurt of rejection.
- Rejection hurts like physical pain. Go easier on yourself.
- Try to not let rejection keep you down. Activate your problem-solving abilities. Take rejection as a challenge.
The Psychology of Resilience
Resilience is about adapting to challenging life experiences. This involves emotional, mental, and behavioural flexibility. To be truly resilient, you’ll need to adjust to internal and external demands. Several factors affect your resilience, such as the way you perceive and engage with the world around you, your social resources, and specific coping strategies. According to psychological research, you can cultivate and practise the skills that you need for greater resilience.
Strategies for Building Resilience
Now that you know that science backs your efforts to increase resilience, let’s take a look at the strategies that you can adopt and use to enhance resilience in sales:
Self-Care and Stress Management
Burnout is more common among sales professionals than you would imagine. A survey found that 67% of the respondents were facing burnout. The sales environment is quite fast-paced and induces a lot of pressure. Burnout will obviously affect sales performance and outcomes. This is a stage where you might face rejection not because you are not trying hard enough, but because you have been trying too hard for too long.
Sometimes, our results start to suffer when we drive ourselves too hard. Resting your mind and returning to the situation later will help you look at it from a fresh perspective and come up with better solutions. Practice and participate in the activities that you enjoy and which help you manage stress more effectively.
Developing a Growth Mindset
It’s vital to change your perspective about rejection and failure. Rather than considering rejections in sales as setbacks, look at them as opportunities for growth. The most important thing is to see what you can learn from the rejection.
Explore what you can do differently to turn that ‘no’ into a ‘yes!’ Analyze what went wrong and find out where there is room for development. Ask yourself questions that will help you identify avenues for improvement. Then, you can get to work on refining your sales pitch through methods such as skills training, adjusting your messaging, and trying to understand the needs of your potential customers better. Presentation skills training can equip you with the knowledge and skill set that you need to communicate more clearly and persuade more effectively. Understanding your target customers’ needs and motivations will help you customise your messaging to resonate with them. These days, social media platforms also provide valuable insights into the sentiments and demands of target customers.
Seek constructive feedback from customers, peers, and mentors, and use this information to hone your sales skills and adjust your tactics. Experimenting with different approaches might also help.
In the face of rejection and failure, it can be difficult to find and maintain your motivation. Counter this by surrounding yourself with people who have a positive influence on you. Your outlook will significantly improve with the positive energy from your environment.
It helps to review your progress. Your past successes can help renew your zeal and bring back your motivation. Celebrate your small wins, and think of failures and rejections as the stepping stones to more success.
Overcoming Fear of Failure
A particularly harsh rejection or a string of rejections can infuse a person with the fear of failure. It can be paralyzing, and it will affect sales performance even more. Identifying the fear of failure in yourself is the first step towards overcoming it. The next step is to address this fear. Face this fear head-on, rather than denying it. Use visualization techniques to build your confidence, increase your positivity, and overpower your fear.
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Outsourcing to Improve Sales Results
Setting up specialized remote or hybrid sales teams can improve your chances of success. You can utilize the cloud-based outbound call center solution MyOperator for building relationships with new customers and strengthening the ones with existing customers. It’s easy and quick to set up this system. This system will help manage sales calls, generate more leads, and increase revenue. It will also increase the flexibility of your team, and it offers the advantage of instant scalability.
Sales professionals should try to avoid taking rejections personally. Many rejections are due to factors beyond our control. Rejections and failures do not reflect your value as a sales professional. If you look at your records, you will notice that the percentage of rejections is quite low as compared to successful sales. Embrace rejections as learning opportunities to minimize their negative impact, stay positive, and augment your sales techniques.