Act Like a Child to Handle a No

in Closing, Resistance and Rejection

In the grocery checkout line the little boy walked over to his mom with package of snack cakes and displayed it to her with an outstretched arm.

“You don’t need that,” mom said, barely glancing up from the Cosmo she was leafing through.

“I want it though.”

“No,” mom said.

The kid threw it in the grocery basket with the other items.

Mom turned the page, then began unloading her items onto the counter.

Including the cakes.

If you have or had kids, or hang out with people who have them, or can remember when you were one yourself, you have experienced how expertly kids handle “no’s.”

Think about it. Kids react to no’s as if they are temporarily hearing-impaired.

They ignore the no’s.

They feel as if their parents don’t really mean it.

They treat no’s as a mild  inconvenience. As a press of the “Pause” button before they get what they want.

They know they might have to ask multiple times.

They know more often than not that their parents will cave in.

If they don’t get what they want now, they’ll come back later and ask again.

They will ask in different ways after a no.

Instead of triggering despair in their emotions, the no signals the next attempt at asking for what they want.

So why do adults in sales look at no as “rejection.”

Why do we treat no like touching a hot flame, getting painfully burned, scarred, and quickly retreating from and avoiding the source.

I had the opportunity to attend a fundraising dinner as part of a celebrity golf tournament for Arizona youth baseball. During the dinner, kids were working the crowd selling raffle tickets. I had already purchased five $20 tickets earlier at the door, and a young lady (fourth grade as I found out) approached our table and very confidently asked,

“Would you like to buy some raffle tickets?”

I smiled and said, “Oh, thanks, but I already bought some.”

Without missing a beat she smiled back and replied, “That’s OK.”

Not sure what to say, I forced my smile and repeated, “Ok.”

Without hesitation she  said, “Yeah, that’s OK. You just haven’t got one from me yet. Buy another one from me.”

So now I owned another one. What else could I do?

Very simple, yet powerful tip this week: think about any situation where a kid gets a no, and take notes on and model their technique for responding.

Better yet, shadow a kid around for awhile. But be prepared for them to ask you for something, and to likely give it to them.

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