Fear of rejection – is it holding your business back?

By February 27, 2014 October 14th, 2014 All members, Psychology

Fear is a strong emotion, isn’t it? Its purpose is to protect you from harm. Fear stimulates a ‘flight or fight’ response, which can be difficult to control. From a business perspective, fear can set invisible parameters to your success.

In business, fear of rejection can stop you from asking for help, requesting a meeting, asking for the order or even chasing payment. I have asked thousands of seminar delegates how they feel about rejection. For some business owners, the fear of rejection is so strong that they have simply stopped asking. They rationalise this behaviour by saying that they “don’t want to expand their business”, or that they are “quite happy with things as they are.” The challenge is that a business is either growing or slipping backwards.

Here is a mantra for you. More customers = more cash = more choices (which may include taking a well earned holiday, supporting a family member or donating to charity).

“Failure is only a temporary change in direction to set you straight for your next success.” ~ Denis Waitley

“Persistence can change failure into extraordinary achievement.” ~ Matt Biondi

In order to prosper, you need to accept that failure and success are intertwined. Don’t think ‘failure’ think ‘feedback’. For example, if an e-shot doesn’t generate the response you expected, examine the list (out of date?), the email Subject line (too salesy?), and the use of the AIDCA copywriting model. If you need to get in front of decision makers, is fear of rejection on the phone holding you back? (What is the worst thing that can happen on the phone, anyway?)

I think that you should make more attempts, keep shouting into the darkness, never give up, find another way around and keep on marketing!

Written by marketing consultant, trainer, speaker and author Nigel Temple.

3 Comments

  • Stuart Young says:

    Pertinent post Nigel. I have certainly struggled with this in the past, and still do from time to time. One concept that helped me was to imagine that the client or prospect was floundering – and I have a solution that will help them. This reframing of the situation transforms my idea of any interaction from one of asking (begging) for business, to one of offering help to someone struggling. We all like to help, right? And we all like help when it’s offered.

  • Nigel Temple says:

    Thanks for this, Stuart. I think that all of us prefer to work inside our comfort zone (and greater success lies outside of this zone!)

  • Nigel Temple says:

    Thanks for this, Stuart. I think that many of us prefer to work inside our comfort zone (and greater success lies outside of this zone!)

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