Spot and eliminate the top 5 barriers to successful selling

When you start out in a new business, it’s usually because you are passionate about something and want to turn it into your life’s work. You are probably very skilled at doing a particular thing very well. Or maybe, you have done the same job for long enough to know that you would rather be master of your own destiny than to keep answering to a boss whilst doing what you are very good at. Then, once the honeymoon period is over, the shock realisation comes that simply being good at one thing is not enough to make a successful business out of it! In order to thrive, any business needs customers. And to get those, we all have to do that one particular thing most new business owners regard with trepidation: We have to actually SELL to people!

Spot and eliminate the top 5 barriers to successful selling

For most business owners, the selling process is anything but easy. Unless you have worked in sales before, or you are blessed with the skills to be a natural sales person, most of us struggle to get this part of our business right.

Because it seems that most people don’t want to be sold to. But if you don’t get sales, or new customers, how are you supposed to survive? There always seems to be another choice for your potential clients, someone with a better pitch, a competitor who shouts louder or offers a better deal, scuppering your best efforts. Selling is a scary, do-eat-dog place, isn’t it?

Consequently, it becomes a self-perpetuating downward spiral that saps confidence and drains energy. And sadly, a lack of confidence to sell is the main reason why 4 in 10 small companies don’t make it to 5 years.

So what are the main reasons behind the fear of pitching your products, or “selling”?

The top 5 sales fears:

  • Fear No. 1: You will make a negative first impression. We all know how important a first impression is, and the fear that you will not make a good one can be intense. It may even make you avoid meeting ideal prospects. It’s this fear of being judged that often shoots us in the foot.
  • Fear No. 2: You will be rejected. Experienced salespeople know they aren’t going to be successful 100% of the time. But newcomers may regard failure as the end of the world. Someone saying NO can be very destructive, if we take it personally! It’s the fear of rejection that kills us off, in this case.
  • Fear No. 3: You’ll come across as pushy. We’ve all had at least one negative experience with a salesperson who kept pushing and pressuring and wouldn’t let us leave or hang up the phone. Many business owners worry they’ll make prospects feel that way. It’s the fear of being judged, again.
  • Fear No. 4: You won’t deliver. Even when you do get a yes, you may fear you won’t be able to fulfill all of the person’s expectations. You may even suffer from the “Impostor Syndrome,” which means you’re starting to question the value of your own products. This one is the fear of not living up to our own (Sometimes impossible!) expectations.
  • Fear No. 5: You don’t know if you’re doing it right. Going into sales without any training can be terrifying. How do you know you’re using the right tactics and offering people what they need? This is a fear of not knowing. A bit like the Impostor Syndrome above, it’s our expectations to do everything perfectly that sinks our ship.


The truth is: It is okay to sell you products.

It is okay to ask for business. But it’s not what you say that is important. It is when and how you say it that will help you clinch the deal. Most of all, it takes practice, a positive attitude, a confident approach, and a host of other things that have to fall in line to be successful at selling.

By starting off examining your mindset and getting rid of the preconceived ideas highlighted above, you will make a good start at letting go of the fear of selling, not taking NO as personal rejection, and eventually even start enjoying bringing your unique gifts to your marketplace.

26 July, 2017

Cathy Richardson If you have any questions about this article or would like to discuss the subject further please contact:
Cathy Richardson of Soapbox Coaching at

Category: Coaching
Article Area: Starting a Business

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