How to handle rejections

Success is all about overcoming rejections and objections so much that if you see you are attaining success without significant objections, you should get worried. Something may be wrong somewhere. Before we go deep into understanding how to handle rejections, we need to know the types. What kind of rejection are you likely to face?

Types of rejection

  • Business sales rejections: Most of the time you are going to face rejections if you are approaching a wrong person. For example, you are sales person selling a product to a prospect you have not carried out any groundwork about. If you have not done enough research about your prospect, you tend think the product you are selling to them is ideal yet they want something different. Most of the business sales rejections I have experienced are because I have tried to sell a product which I think is good for the prospect when actually it isn’t. In most cases you will face such rejections simply because your product does not add value to the prospect’s condition. To avoid such a rejection, you must ask: who is my target person. What are their pain? Try to sell them products that fix their pain.
  • Relationship rejection; what is in it for the other person. Are you looking for a marriage relationship? Remember long term relationships are built on give and take. Do you share the same background like education, exposure or lifestyle? Are your families too apart in the social arena? Great relationships are based on a strong foundation. Unless you get to identify that foundation, you are going to get rejections regardless of who you are. In a relationship, always ask yourself how the other party benefits from you. What value do they see and get from you? If you can’t answer this question, what makes you to be a in a relationship? There should at least be something in common especially family backgrounds or places of work. Few relationships survive if they lack some common ground and mutual benefits.
  • Failure to achieve interests; it is because you are dealing with the wrong person. You are selling a strategic product to an office massager instead of approaching the Executive Director. They are going to say no first time without consulting anybody! Rejections arise because you have not done groundwork to understand the ideal person. Who is the real economic buyer? Whose interests will your services or products help?

The first step in overcoming rejections is by identifying who your ideal customer is.

You must first understand your customer, then your product and try to connect the two. Look at its features and see how they benefit the prospect. How does the prospect benefit from buying your product/ service? Do not sell the product per see, sell benefits!

Understanding the benefits of the product is so critical for you as a sales person. When you ask many successful salespeople, they will tell you they succeeded because they know the product benefits very well. Product knowledge is so critical to your business growth.

One of the reasons why most salespeople have failed to get ahead or to make sales is the lack of product knowledge. They do not understand what value the prospect misses when she/ he has not bought the product. Do you understand your prospect? You are asking yourself; what is their greatest pain? What is their age? What is affecting their business? What are they scared of most? Once you are able to understand the other person’s pain, it means that they are always waiting for a solution which solves their problems. In addition, you may have to reach to the prospects and help them know their paid and how your products will ease that pain.

If I am seated here, my pain is how to increase sales. I want somebody who can sleep in office because s/he is hardworking. I want my websites to be updated with content daily. These are my pains. Anybody who comes with these solutions, I will pay them.

For every business situation, you must ask what their pain is. Is it a government institution, CEO; you do not sell unless you are fixing a pain. You are going to face many rejections when you go to a given prospect without understanding who they are. Will your product be able to fix their biggest pain?

In summary, to avoid rejections;

  • Understand what is the root cause?
  • Are you selling to the true economic buyer?
  • And of course rejections show a sign of interest. It is only that you are not giving them benefits.

Wish you success in your endeavours.

Copyright Mustapha B Mugisa, 2015. All rights reserved.

About M. B. Mugisa

Mustapha Barnabas Mugisa is one of those rare people who provides business consulting and advisory to professionals and corporate entities who demand the very best. He is a prolific speaker and governance (strategy and risk) expert. His speaking involves making key notes at major conferences and business events on both technical subjects and leadership skills. A change agent and motivational speaker. Mustapha provides tools and proven methodologies to remarkable results through making people appreciate change. Visit Mustapha's LinkedIn profile to know more. Mustapha is the architect of #WinningMindset Leadership and #WinningTheGame strategy approach that combines Harvard Business strategy Playing To Win, with the Blue Ocean Strategy and Balanced Score Card to deliver a strategy that is easy to execute and monitor. Visit for special insights to improve your condition. Are you too good to be great?

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