Facing fear and 'Overcoming call reluctance' is STUPID, and does not work. Learn how to here:

18 replies
I see lots of information on how to become more confident, people say 'Imagine yourself as someone confident, visualize success. Repeat affirmations: I'm the best, I'm the best, I'm best!" The problem, is that this stuff is kinda stupid. You know it is, and you won't fully accept something you know is not true.

You think you are the best, but you are still scared? You just need to work harder they tell you, and visualize what you want until you WILL it into a glorious manifestation.. You now have two opposing beliefs your mind that are vying to be acknowledged as real: what you wish reality could look like, and what you know deep down as true. This begins the fight you start with yourself.

The implication behind self-help and doing things like affirmations or visualization is that it reinforces the belief that you are not enough as you are. But you are already someone of value now, trying to add or subtract from this natural truth is the cause of fear, insecurity and call reluctance. Don't focus on a negative. Instead, my perspective on selling is that: 'I may not succeed, but there is no way I could fail.' My second belief is that: "If it can be done at all, I can do it. If it doesn't work, then I guess it couldn't be done.' A little delusional perhaps, but empowering.

Adding pressure and wilfulness to a situation where you are already feeling anxious is not going to eventually make the fear go away. Being courageous and facing the same fear each day is not going to make you feel better. Making calls is not a big deal, so don't view it as facing your fears, just get on with it.
#call #facing #fear #learn #overcoming #reluctance #stupid #work
  • Profile picture of the author Jeremiah Walsh
    I think that it is the fear of the unknown that gets most people. Once people open their mind a bit and realize that they are just talking to another great person on the phone it cuts down on that fear a lot.

    That other person has a family, friends, and their own story. There is no need to be afraid of that.

    If you got one person on a bad that, don't sweat it. There are plenty other people who will be having a good day.
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  • Profile picture of the author Claude Whitacre
    Originally Posted by Matthew North View Post

    I see lots of information on how to become more confident, people say 'Imagine yourself as someone confident, visualize success. Repeat affirmations: I'm the best, I'm the best, I'm best!" The problem, is that this stuff is kinda stupid. You know it is, and you won't fully accept something you know is not true.
    .
    I'm amazed that people would be confident when they start selling. Everything they are doing is wrong.

    My outlook was always "I'm not doing this correctly", and I would just work to get better at it.

    If anyone is making sales of your offer, that means sales can be made. Start with that certainty.

    I've had a few people I was taking with me say "You have such a positive attitude.". And I say "I don't need a positive attitude. I have training"


    Sales is the only job, where a pep talk is needed, to boost your attitude. Doctors don't have meetings. Lawyers don't sing company songs. They don't need to. They have training. They have skills...knowledge.
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    • Profile picture of the author kenmichaels
      Originally Posted by Claude Whitacre View Post

      I've had a few people I was taking with me say "You have such a positive attitude.". And I say "I don't need a positive attitude. I have training"
      I hear that positive attitude crap all the time ... none of my comments
      are ever that good.

      - Starting today, I am going to use it.

      I can see benefits (other then reinforcement ) for using it.
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      Selling Ain't for Sissies
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      • Profile picture of the author Claude Whitacre
        Originally Posted by kenmichaels View Post

        I hear that positive attitude crap all the time ... none of my comments
        are ever that good.

        - Starting today, I am going to use it.

        I can see benefits (other then reinforcement ) for using it.
        Ken; I say this to the trainees. But I would never say it to a customer.

        From customers, I get.."You sure know how to sell" (Which is a trap), and I say, "Not really. It's that we are looking at the best product for what you need. I'm just explaining it". And I know you know the psychology behind that.

        Originally Posted by eccj View Post

        That is an excellent point. All that stuff adds pressure to the situation.

        A coach doesn't need to motivate his team before a big game because they are already motivated , he needs to be calm.
        You're new here. But you seem to have some real insights. Welcome aboard.
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  • Profile picture of the author eccj
    Originally Posted by Matthew North View Post

    Adding pressure and wilfulness to a situation where you are already feeling anxious is not going to eventually make the fear go away. Being courageous and facing the same fear each day is not going to make you feel better. Making calls is not a big deal, so don't view it as facing your fears, just get on with it.
    That is an excellent point. All that stuff adds pressure to the situation.

    A coach doesn't need to motivate his team before a big game because they are already motivated , he needs to be calm.

    A guy who is about to get on the phones for the first time doesn't need to be motivated because he already is. Rather he is just scarred.

    Something that has helped me in the past when I become reluctant to do things, for whatever reason, is right down the worst things that could happen if I do it and o right down the worst things that could happen if I don't do it.

    In the case of prospecting for business over the phone the worst thing that could happen: Being yelled at, being hung up on. Worst thing if I don't call: Not paying bills, losing my business.

    Obviously the most painful things happen if I don't prospect.
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  • Profile picture of the author bizgrower
    Feel the fear and do it anyway.
    (Name of a book by Susan Jeffers, PhD. Pretty good when I read it back in the
    days when I was too "macho" to admit to fear. Felt I should give credit where
    credit is due.)

    Another one I liked was "Give it your worst." I can't recall who wrote something
    along those lines. It's a way to relax a little - as if you are going to go out and intentionally
    do badly at whatever performance.

    More knowledge about your field, product, or service = more confidence and motivation.
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    "If you think you're the smartest person in the room, then you're probably in the wrong room."

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  • Profile picture of the author Jason Kanigan
    It's true that you aren't going to "feel confident" all of a sudden, especially just because of some pump-you-up cheerleading.

    However...there IS a call reluctance problem. It IS real. And in my experience, and how I teach people to overcome it, there are two sides to the problem:

    1 > the rational side

    and

    2 > the irrational side.

    The rational side is explained by understanding some numbers.

    The irrational side is hidden and has a biochemical source. It's like having a calculator but the '7' key is always held down: the instructions In look good, but the answers coming Out are off--though you don't know that. So you're constantly reacting to and making decisions off bad feedback.

    I have a problem with heights. In 2000 I was up on The Chief, a large rock formation around Squamish, BC. About 3/4 of the way along the circular trail up and down again, there was a part where the pathway was a ledge about a food wide cut into the rock. We were near the top--tens of stories in the air. Shuffling along while holding onto a heavy chain embedded into the rock was necessary. I could either proceed or go back the long way 'round. My fear level was very high: I was NOT enthused about the idea of stepping off into the abyss with only a tiny ledge and a chain I knew nothing about the reliability of to help me.

    My martial arts training came in very handy at that moment. I had to use a deep breathing technique to calm my mind down, which was the real problem--and then I could go along this skinny path. Total time out there was less than a minute but it seemed like an hour.

    Without *technique*, I don't think I would have been able to do it. Without being consciously aware of what was going on, that Apache Spirit Walkers could walk out on iron girders ten stories in the air because they had no fear of falling, and without that breathing technique, I probably wouldn't have moved onwards. No matter how much I would have liked to minimize my fear, suck it up and move on.

    That being said, there is something to doing a thing that scares you over and over. I was recently a bit nervous about hopping off a dock onto a boat. There was a drop and an open space where a clumsy guy could find himself suddenly in the water...and perhaps having bounced bruisingly off some wood on the way down. After I climbed aboard, I found it was easy to move back and forth and following that first time I have been totally relaxed about it.

    Our minds often make the worst case scenario seem the likely one; this is usually the real enemy.
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    • Profile picture of the author John Durham
      Losing the fear comes the same way compassion comes - through understanding.


      Understanding, in this case, is when you finally get it that you are just doing a job. "Hey. I'm just doin a job here".


      The other salesman are doing a job, salesman all over the world are doing a job. When you call on someone you are just doing your job. When they show interest or not, they are just doing their job.


      If you are a business person, then it's your job to go find some business... If you are a web designer who isn't selling ... then you aren't a business person, and you don't have a business. You are just a guy who knows how to design a web site.


      Having a SKILL and having a BUSINESS are two separate things. If you don't have a sales machine working fulltime then you don't have a business... if you just got a random sale once from a friend of a friend, then you still don't have a selling machine in place; you did a "project", but you still don't have a BUSINESS.


      In any event, selling or calling on people in some fashion is just part of the job of having a business.


      When you understand that everyone is just doing their job, then it's all good.


      When you call on people, they know you are just doing your job. You should know it too.


      You mean no offense to anyone, you don't have to be afraid of confrontation. It isn't confrontation. It's just doing a job and spreading word of your business offer around. If someone isn't interested. "No big deal. Just called to let you know about our service". And it IS truly no big deal. It's just your job.


      That person who picks up the phone has a job too, they may have to sell too, or their boss has to.


      Someone in that business is selling something, and someone in that business is buying things, services... If they buy services, and you are calling offering one, then what's the big deal? It's just everybody doing their job.


      That secretary has a canned line she gives every salesperson, because everyone knows that handling sales calls is a business process... Everyone knows that salesman have a job to do and that they ARE going to call. No big deal.


      Nobody really thinks much of it. The salesmen are all just doing their job when they call, and when the secretary says "we don't take sales calls" she is just doing her job. It may even be in her protocol handbook to do so...


      That's how people stay on the phone for 8 hours per day, 6 days per week, for years on end... They know they are just doing their job.


      What makes cold call reluctance go away is when you understand that it's just you doing your job. It's not personal, and unless you close a deal, nobody is even going to remember your name for more than 10 seconds after you call, if THAT.


      You weren't even a person, just some guy who called that was doing his JOB.

      While I'm on that...


      It's interesting that most people have an easier time calling for someone elses business than they do for their own... I think a lot of it has to do with the fact that when you are doing it for someone else, it's easier to feel like "Im just doing my job"... It's harder when you are the one you are representing.

      Also, along that same line, I also think that people don't really have a fear of cold calling because of all the rejection in the prospecting phase... I think they are more afraid of someone saying "Im interested" personally. Then they have to "sell" themselves. Most people aren't afraid of the No's. Everyone knows that you get a bunch of those then someone says "Yes, tell me more". It's like clockwork.


      They are MORE afraid of what they would do if someone actually said "Yes, Im interested", than they are that they wont be able to find someone who is interested.


      In short, they are afraid they wont know how to SELL.

      It's easier when you are selling someone elses business. It's a little more scary when you are selling yourself, and representing YOU.

      In any event, it all comes down to "Are you gonna do your job or not?". If not, you get fired. If you have your own business and don't, then it fires you. That's all it comes down to. It's a job of having a business, and you are either going to do the job or you are not.


      Understanding that is what either makes you take action or NOT.


      Fear and reluctance?


      You are the only one to be afraid of... If you don't do it, then you aren't doing what it takes to have a business, and you cry alone. That's it. If you are too fearful to do it at a job? "CYA!" They wont even bat an eye. The question isn't how to overcome reluctance, it's more "You gonna do the job , or not?"
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      • Profile picture of the author Jason Kanigan
        Originally Posted by John Durham View Post

        Losing the fear comes the same way compassion comes - through understanding.


        Understanding is when you finally get it that you are just doing a job. "Hey. I'm just doin a job here".


        The other salesman are doing a job, salesman all over the world are doing a job. When you call on someone you are just doing your job. When they show interest or not, they are just doing their job.


        If you are a business person, then it's your job to go find some business... It's just part of the job.


        When you understand that everyone is just doing their job, then it's all good.


        When you call on people, they know you are just doing your job. You should know it too.


        You mean no offense to anyone, you don't have to be afraid of confrontation. It isn't confrontation. It's just doing a job and spreading word of your business around. That person who picks up the phone has to sell too, they have to do jobs too... or their boss has to. Someone in that business is selling something, and someone in that business is buying things, services... If they buy services, and you are calling offe3ribng one then what's the big deal? It's just everybody doing their job.


        That's how people stay on the phone for 8 hours per day, 6 days per week, for years on end... They know they are just doing their job.


        It's interesting that most people have an easier time calling for someone elses business than they do for their own... I think a lot of it has to do with the fact that when you are doing it for someone else, it's easier to feel like "Im just doing my job"... It's harder when you are the one you are representing.


        Another thing I think is that people don't really have a fear of cold calling because of all the rejection in the prospecting phase... I think they are more afraid of someone saying "Im interested" personally. Then they have to sell. Most people aren't afraid of the No's, they are afraid of what they would do if someone actually said "Yes, Im interested".
        One part of John's message I have always liked is the one in this thread here:

        http://www.warriorforum.com/offline-...kwardness.html

        Echoed a bit in the above post.
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    • Originally Posted by Jason Kanigan View Post

      Our minds often make the worst case scenario seem the likely one; this is usually the real enemy.
      I agree. We often think of the worst immediately, which is why we start reluctant.
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  • Profile picture of the author Freebiequeen1999
    Just do it

    I will say it again....get a job, part time (many are pt) telemarketing

    stop making it such a mountain

    Lots of people are able to telemarket....no degree....no real experience....

    I have personally "sold" things (or set appts) for stuff I had zero interest or real knowledge of...

    with a good script, solid parameters, good comebacks for objections, it comes together

    I have also seen "rooms" that were built on shifting sand....a product or a process that was not well thought out

    I see a lot of that here....people thinking up poorly thought out "offers" that they can't sell so they want others to sell for them. Ain't gonna happen IMHO
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  • Profile picture of the author John Durham
    One of the things I have admired most in life is call center owners who have gotten away with hiring average people to say a script for 20-40 years and make money year in and year out, without ever having changed the script and by making every person who walks in the door do it verbatim.


    When you have a selling system that's so tight you don't even have to question it... When you don't have to take ANYONE's crap in your room, no matter how much they think they are a superstar, because you KNOW that you can hand this system to the next person who walks in the door and it will work the same for them... That is AWESOME!


    When someone comes to you demanding things because of their "talent", you are like "I was placing an ad when I found you. I could hand someone else the same script and it would work for them too". Then you have control over your production. The tail no longer wags the dog.


    That's when you don't have trouble finding talented sales people any more. What you are REALLY looking for is just some average person who will do everything you say verbatim , and follow simple instructions, so that everyone can make money.


    Good managers don't even let their SUPERSTARS become loose cannons. Even THEY have to use the script verbatim. This way the manager knows what to expect and how to adjust at all times.


    Talent has good days and bad days, but a solid system is like a machine. Talent is unpredictable, but a good system is predictable.

    It's like that show "the biggest loser", where some of the weight loss coaches are seen as abrasive and unshakable. On the show the trainers KNOW their systems, and they don't even have to ASK if you cheated on your diet or not.


    They can TELL you if you did.


    If you didn't lose a certain number of pounds in a certain number of days, then they don't even QUESTION that you didn't do what they asked. They have a system that works in a predictable way for any average person who follows it in the prescribed manner.


    Telemarketing managers, like the weight loss coaches on that television show, get hated on because they aren't able to be questioned.


    They KNOW their system, they KNOW their numbers, and if you aren't performing then they KNOW you aren't following it in the prescribed manner.


    They don't even need your opinion or assessment of the situation.


    A lot of overcoming reluctance is about putting your faith in the system more than your personality, on that note.


    If a manager has seen a pitch work VERBATIM for 150 people over the course of 2 years, and you come to him saying you cant sell, he isn't going to pat you on the back...he is going to tell you that you aren't following the system somehow. and you can say "But... But..." but he knows his system and how it works.


    He literally has the ability to know your situation better than YOU even do, even though YOU are the one sitting in the chair, because he knows the system and how it works. It isn't about YOU it's about the system not being implemented correctly.


    It's ALWAYS about the system not being implemented correctly, when your business is built on a WORKING system.


    In a call center managers mind, the only thing YOU need is to quit doing it your own way and do it in the manner prescribed. The way it's designed to work.


    He is almost ALWAYS right.


    People really give themselves too much credit... as was stated, building a dream on your daily emotional roller coaster or personality is a house of cards, built on shifting sand.


    It's all about the selling system itself, being predictable and working.
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  • Profile picture of the author Michael Nguyen
    From what I learnt call reluctance is when you're not prepared and winging it. You can pump yourself up all day long but if you don't have a good script / or none, then you're motivation will just go away because you're getting rejected and not progressing the call. I'm no pro cold caller but as soon I learned my scripts and being able to handle objection, I can saw my fear going away.

    John Durham, your telemarketing posts are amazing, thanks.
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  • Profile picture of the author Freebiequeen1999
    With a good script and a good process and an "offer" that is salable, you can sit down any kid, back to work housewife, out of job former (whatever) and get them to a point where they are selling, producing, making their hourly plus commission, bonuses, "ringing the bell"

    A danger zone comes in with success...and a good manager gets them over this .....after a period of time, weeks or months depending on the nature of the person, they get confident and decide to "rewrite the script".....add thins, change things, hurry it up and omit sentences or paragraphs.
    Some add on their own "flair' and their own words.....others decide (falsely) that they won't bother with whole groups of prospects ...."Southerners are a waste of time, they don't like NY accents"...
    "I can't stand dealing with older people"....."Nobody under 30 will have the money for this" and so forth...on and on

    and what happens is ...their sales go down....they NEED to be pulled in and sit down with the script, have every call monitored and simply go right back to the script, read it word for word and most times they start selling again. A good script and process works...they just need to work it

    Some "damaged" telemarketers sing the Frank Sinatra "My Way" song and off they go....quit or let go most times.

    I think many people here need to get out there and sell their own "deals"...and get a process...before they try to hire "telemarketers". Most of the stuff here is really more of an appointment setter deal anyhow...telemarketers can get your foot in the door to sell a website but hard to say if they can quote, price a whole site to specifics all on their own

    Regarding appointments.....you would have to set parameters...how far you will travel..what you want....and keep an ongoing calendar program up and running for them to fill slots for you , allowing travel time. They will need to be paid by the appointment and pretty heft fee...or hourly plus bonus per appointment

    All the talk talk and theory and motivation and lofty ideas don't mean squat if you don't have a product and a process. Oh....and in any decent telemarketing room the "boss" and the "managers" can and will get on the phone and show the room "how it is done". The manager is there to jump on a call with a newbie and "save it" or "close it".

    If you can't sell maybe you need to hire a sales director, trainer, and consultant to put it together
    Some of the ambitions I see on this board are just not realistic. "Hire someone to sell it"...."get someone on commission"...."get 20 people around the country on the phone"...?
    IMHO not realistic
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  • Profile picture of the author John Durham
    Freebiequeen1999, it's clear that you have been there a lot. That is EXACTLY what telemarketers do... The Frank Sinatra song is the first step toward failure usually.


    Interestingly, I once had a challenge in my room.


    I was telling the telemarketers the importance of being verbatim, and some guy interrupted my speech and said "I always do it verbatim! What if you are already doing it verbatim and it has stopped working because you don't sound fresh anymore?"


    My answer to him was that he didn't sound fresh because he wasn't doing it verbatim. I told him that he had gotten to know his script so well that his mind was jumping words in it and taking short cuts because he didn't have to "read" line for line anymore...

    Derrick insisted that he DID say it verbatim, so I challenged him and told him that I would give him 5 dollars if he could read the script verbatim in front of the whole room.


    Of course he thought that was a no brainer and took the challenge.


    The most fascinating thing was that , there he stood, in front of the entire room, holding the script in his hands , looking right at it and reading right off of it... and every other line was off! His mind was jumping words and adding them all over the place!


    I proved to him that his mind worked faster than he could read and got ahead of him, and that he truly was not on script any more, jumping important money words, and watering down the message with shortcuts....


    It happens... and slowly if they are not careful, they are no longer saying the verbatim words that made the company successful for twenty years.


    Most people can "get it" when they hear of internet marketing that "Even changing one single word in your ad copy can effect conversions tremendously", but they don't give the same consideration to their phone script.


    Often the same people who say that every single word counts in your sales page ad copy will ALSO say you don't need a script on the phone, or to be verbatim.


    Baffles me.
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  • Profile picture of the author James English
    Just looked at my calendar for the past year. I had over 1,000 appts. Every single one of those appointments (even when they called me) I had overwhelming anxiety and shaking. The person on the other end didn't notice, so it didn't matter.

    My point? Theres always a chance that call reluctance and anxiety won't ever go away. Push through it and make it happen if you really care making this whole "offline" thing work.
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    • Profile picture of the author John Durham
      Originally Posted by James English View Post

      Just looked at my calendar for the past year. I had over 1,000 appts. .

      Wow! That is some nice work man! Congratulations!
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