Work Life: What to Do When Someone Says "No"

3:02:00 AM

I'm retail buyer.  Some think that a buyer is a "professional shopper" who picks out cute things and scans the internet for trends.  Not quite.  Most people don't realize the large component of sales that goes into buying.   As a buyer you sometimes feel like the customer (they want you to buy their product), but sometimes you feel like the vendor (you want them to do business with your sales channel).  This dynamic depends on who needs who more.  For example.... does Nike need to sell to your small boutique?  Or do you need Nike to sell to your small boutique?  

No matter what side you are on, the buying or the selling, the "no's" are inevitable.  Things, people, and partners, will not always fall into place.  There will be seasons in business where the "no's" seem to never end.  I've recently picked up the most simple, straightforward, game-changing tool for handling the "no's".  It is simply responding to a "no" with the question, "What would it take?".

It seems too easy, right?  But I guarantee this will change the dynamic of the conversation.  This question opens up someone's mind to the possibility of "yes" by allowing them to speak in the hypothetical.  By getting someone to speak in the hypothetical, you're opening their previously closed mind to the possibility.  This is non-threatening to both parties, as it's simply a discussion of ideals.  No one is committing to anything.  Their response gives you valuable insight to their goals.  It can inspire you to come up with creative solutions and approach a new solution from unique angles.  In short-- this response can get you out of the "gridlock" that getting a "no" often creates.  And you still seem like a competent, respectful listener, not just someone who won't take no for an answer. 

Merry Christmas!  And remember to always ask, "What would it take?" before giving up on an opportunity. 


You Might Also Like