I recently wrote a blog on four gratifying ways to overcome the feeling of “rejection” when you’re prospecting. However, the reality is that there is no rejection when you’re trying to get new clients to work with you – whether during prospecting, lead follow-up or on an appointment. Rejection is a myth. It’s a story you make up in your own mind about the outcome of a conversation with a prospect that didn’t go the way you wanted it to.
To be clear, you can encounter rejection in a real estate transaction when a seller rejects an offer or a buyer rejects the counter offer. Any offer can get rejected, but a prospect who tells you “No” and chooses another agent isn’t actually rejection. Here’s why…
Say you go to car dealership and look at four really nice cars but only pick one. Did the other three cars get rejected? No! You simply chose the car that you wanted. The other cars are still perfectly nice cars, and somebody else will be perfectly happy to buy them and drive them in the future – just not you. You haven’t rejected the value of the cars – you’ve just decided that they aren’t right for you.
Or, let’s say I make a batch of fabulous chocolate chip cookies – some of the best chocolate chip cookies ever made. And let’s say that you don’t like chocolate chip cookies, but I offer you one anyways and you tell me “No.” I could tell you, “But these are MY chocolate chip cookies. They’re amazingly delicious! You gotta try one.” And again, you say, “No. I don’t like chocolate chip cookies.”
Now, did you just reject me because you didn’t want one of my cookies? NO! You just don’t like chocolate chip cookies. So why in the world would I take it personally as if you personally or rejecting me?
This is such an important distinction for all of us to understand. The problem with the term “rejection” is that rejection implies unworthiness. It implies that something is defective, inferior or otherwise not up to standard. And when it comes to prospects declining to work with you, that simply isn’t the case.
The issue isn’t that prospects are rejecting you – the problem is that you’re feeling rejected because you’re taking these decisions personally. You’re taking it as a statement of unworthiness and that sucks! That feeling is the worst – so what should you do? Anything it takes to avoid that feeling! That feeling didn’t come from your prospects – it came from what you convinced yourself that a “No” response meant.
Instead of feeling rejected, choose to feel released and empowered. Look at these situations from a different perspective – including any of the following alternatives:
First of all, suppose you’ve reached out to a potential seller, asking him to list his property with your business. He considers your proposal and ultimately says, “No.”
But while your first instinct might be to get angry or teary-eyed over this missed opportunity, take a second to consider what’s actually happened here.
The world hasn’t ended…
Human sacrifice isn’t occurring (and though dogs and cats are living together, mass hysteria hasn’t yet resulted)…
Your business hasn’t collapsed…
Instead, what happened when this potential seller turned you down is that he gave you a golden opportunity to move on to the next possible client – one who might actually turn into a paying customer for your business. And if you look at it that way, the person who initially “rejected” you ultimately did your business a huge favor!
Here’s the thing… Getting a “No” answer to your business proposal is just that – a business answer to a business question. It isn’t an indication that you’re a failure as a person, that you’ll never make it in the real estate business or that you’ll never go on to make your family proud.
What is harmful is letting these natural, inevitable “No’s” get into your mind and make you believe that you’ve failed personally.
In many ways, rejection is just that – a personal belief. You’re applying your own thoughts, feelings, emotions and perceptions to something that isn’t grounded in any of these realms. If you let this cycle of emotions run unchecked, you’ll see your self-esteem start to plummet – something that will actually affect your ability to close deals in the future.
So instead of taking these instances of “rejection” seriously, ask yourself what you could have done differently to bring about a different business result. Was there any part of the prospecting process where you felt your potential customer’s interest wane? If so, you may be able to identify key parts of your sales process that can be tweaked in order to be even more effective in the future.
Finally, think about how other types of salespeople handle so-called “rejection.” If you’re a Mercedes Benz dealership, do you really get bent out of shape if somebody decides to buy a BMW instead of one of your cars?
No! Mercedes Benz doesn’t take it personally. Instead, they conclude that either a) you wanted something different in a car that they can’t provide, or b) that there’s something off with their sales process that should be fixed.
Successful salespeople learn to treat “No’s” as feedback that allows them to make meaningful changes to either their product or sales process – not as personal failures that leave them reaching for a box of tissues and a pint of Ben and Jerry’s.
You must do the same thing in your real estate business. Learn to treat “No’s” from potential clients as nothing more than feedback that can help to guide future process improvements. Believe me, it isn’t personal – unless you choose to make it that way.
If you’ve got any other tips on how to handle that “rejection feeling”, I’d love to hear your feedback. Share your thoughts and recommendations in the comments section below!