16 Types of Sales Call Reluctance and How to Overcome Them

16 Types of Sales Call Reluctance and How to Overcome Them
Updated date:
Apr 18, 2022

Some salespeople mistakenly believe that Sales Call Reluctance is simply a fear of picking up the phone. Telephobia is just one sort of aversion to making calls.

There are 16 types of fear that can make salespeople avoid cold calling and prospecting. It's critical to understand which of the 16 of them is holding your sales career hostage.

16 Types of Over the Phone Reluctance

1. Doomsayer

Doomsayers will not take chances and redirect their attention away from potential purchasers, resulting in sales stagnation. Salespeople continue to focus on worst-case prospecting scenarios.

2. Over-Preparation

Over-preparers tend to over-analyze and delay taking action. They spent too much time in sales preparing what they were going to say but not enough time prospecting for the audience.

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3. Hyper-Pro

Hyper professionals feel compelled to manipulate people's perceptions to appear above average while concealing self-doubt and a skill gap. It's almost as crucial as the actual sales activities to project a successful image and look more knowledgeable.

4. Stage-Fright

Due to emotional discomfort, a crippling fear or hatred of presenting to groups. Other types of prospecting, on the other hand, may be unaffected.

5. Rejection of a role

Feelings of uneasiness or guilt frequently accompanied this professional choice. They realize the prospects available in sales, but the negative perceptions about selling make them feel like failures, followed by worry about what others think about their chosen vocation.

6. Yielder

Yielders are more likely to back out of a sale than to pursue it to a satisfactory conclusion. Dread of being perceived as selfish characterizes a yielder and intrusive in prospecting for new business.

7. Social Self Consciousness

This is a self-imposed emotional hesitancy that prevents productive connection with specific customer target groups, as well as meeting them at all. Differences in education or position are examples of triggers. Other sorts of prospecting may be unaffected, even though this is a highly targeted concern.

8. Separationist

Their fear of conflict or rejection defines separationists, especially when asking friends or peers to expand their sales network.

9. Emotionally Unemancipated

Fear of emotional conflict or rejection while asking people to help expand their sales network or influence. It can have negative implications even in sales situations where calling on family members is appropriate or when people are not accessible due to death or geographical distance.

10. Referral Aversion

Referral aversion is the emotional discomfort associated with requesting existing clients for referrals. It has little or no impact on salespeople establishing new contacts or closing sales.

11. Telephobia

Telephobia is the inability to use the telephone to further sales goals. However, face-to-face prospecting may be unaffected.

12. Oppositional Reflex

The inability to share power or be supported is a defining feature of Oppositional Reflex. High approval demands and low self-esteem are common symptoms. It also comes with a solid desire to dispute, make excuses, and point fingers at others. These salesmen cannot accept coaching, advice, management, or training because they are emotionally incapable of doing so.

13. Discomfort with Online Prospecting

Discomfort with online prospecting occurs when using social media and other cutting-edge technology.

14. Complex Selling

When selling under complex sales circumstances, there is a sense of discomfort.

15. Extensions of Time to Sell

How salespeople handle cross-selling, up-selling, and on-selling situations

16. Making Payment Arrangements

Conclude reluctance, or how people act when they need to close a deal, is related.

Everyone can overcome call hesitance, whether they're full-time salespeople, business owners, or startup founders who have to generate new leads. You may do this by first figuring out what's causing the problem, then conducting a sales call assessment.

RELATED READ - Cold Calling: Unethical Or Not?

What is a Sales Call Assessment? 

You can use the assessment to detect and measure the possibility for specific fears of prospecting. The evaluation is not a personality test or a measure of a person's accomplishments. It's a valuable technique for identifying potentially ineffective practices that could lead to sales failure.

What Causes Reluctance?

So you're terrified of being rejected. Hello, but so are the majority of people. It's natural to be afraid of rejection (and crucial).

As soon as you consider cold calling, you begin to imagine worst-case situations, and indeed, the conversation may be uncomfortable before you get into your stride. It may, however, be fantastic.

According to sales development pioneer Dave Kurlan:


Salespeople who must be liked are 148 % less effective, 147 % less likely to reach the decision-maker, and have a 151 % lower chance of closing.

Even though there are numerous reasons for telephobia, they can be divided into three categories:

  • The fraud factor: This is due to a lack of confidence in your ability to provide excellent service. The first half of successful selling is selling to yourself, and the second part is selling to your client. 
  • Fear of failure: Another factor that contributes to call trepidation is the fear of failure. It happens when a recruiter tries to attract new clients but keeps getting the door slammed in his face. Each "no" makes it more difficult for him to pick up the phone, creating a vicious cycle.
  • Fear of rejection: A third element that prevents people from selling is their fear of rejection. When a recruiter makes a marketing call to a prospect and asks him a series of sales questions, he will almost always encounter some resistance on the other end of the line. If this rejection is taken personally, it can result in apprehension.

But you must accept your role as a salesperson. It's your job to close deals, therefore take responsibility for it. It's more of a dialogue than a sales presentation. You are the expert on the advantages of your products and services, and you are the one who will communicate those advantages to the consumer.

Keep in mind that you are not alone in your dread. Before dialing, most of your sales colleagues are taking a deep breath and psyching themselves up. Everyone is afraid at times! So, what's next?

How do you Relax Before a Sales Call?

You must discover a technique to overcome your fear if you want to achieve peak sales performance. Fortunately, there are several options; try what works best for you and mix and match these tactics as you see fit. 

There is no right or wrong in this situation. Only one thing matters: does it assist you in conquering your fear?

1. Expect the yes, but be open to a no.

You should expect the yes and welcome the no whenever you make contact with a new prospect. What exactly do I mean?

Prepare yourself for a fantastic call. The stars will align in your favor, and the gods will smile upon you. So much of this work is persuading yourself of your abilities.

While also facing the chance that, despite your abilities, some prospects will reject you. Some folks are going to say no. Maybe they're not prepared, and perhaps they're having a bad day. Perhaps it wasn't the best call you've ever made.

What will you do with your leftovers? What can you do differently next time to increase your chances of getting a yes? Only what you can control is under your power.

2. Transform fear of failure into fearlessness.

When you face what you're doing: selling a prospect on a solution, you realize that fearlessness is doable. It isn't rocket science. It is not a case of brain surgery. When you compress it down, it's just sales. It will not bite.

3. Turn your anxiety into excitement.

Because you're meeting a prospect over the phone, your voice is the beginning and finish of the conversation. When you start the conversation, smile to let your customers know you're excited to meet them. It shouldn't feel like making the call is a chore for you.

Smiling will also make you believe you're happy to be there, which you will eventually learn to be.

4. Develop confidence.

Act confident until you genuinely believe it. What continues to astound me is how wonderful this works. It's more important in sales to reply in a certain way than to respond with specific phrases. You're entrusting them with your trust.

Using a script is a simple way to overcome social self-consciousness in sales. You don't have to think about what you're going to say while you're working with a script. Instead, concentrate on the tone of your voice, your intonation, and the emotional connotations of your words.

5. Understand and control your voice.

Physical improvements might help you gain confidence. First, find your call volume's Goldilocks zone: not too quiet, not too loud, but just right in the middle. Then, be aware of how quickly you speak. (Ask your coworkers what they think of your voice on the phone.) 

Do you hurry through your presentations or speak at an excruciatingly slow pace?

Last but not least, consider your posture. Although the prospect cannot see you, your body language conveys your confidence or uncertainty over the phone. Change and become the person you want to be on the phone.

6. Establish a procedure for dealing with failed sales pitches.

Get to the point where you know what to do if a call goes terribly. Following a difficult decision, I'm a firm believer in physical activity. Get out of your chair, make a cup of coffee, or go for a brisk stroll. Do anything to get away from the tense situation and escape the want to lash out. Even if coworkers join in on the slamming of sales calls, you're only fostering a terrible culture.

Having a scheduled time or location to chat through these calls might also be beneficial. That way, you'll know you'll be able to express yourself over lunch with a mentor or during a team meeting, and you won't bring those negative feelings into your next call.

Making more than one call each day should also be part of your daily habit. It will not only offer you experience, but it will also save you from ruining your entire day if the one call you have to make does not go well.

Make time in your day to offer your service or product to someone, then to someone else, and then to someone else. One terrible call could lead to the next great call, completely changing the course of your day.

7. Review the recordings of your phone calls.

I'm sure you've heard yourself on a voicemail or a video and wondered, "Do I sound like that?" When it comes to showing ourselves to the world, we aren't the ideal people to ask. It's difficult to notice the phrases you use too often or the vocal tics you've developed.

Start recording your calls unless you have a mentor who can assist you figure out what's wrong. (Your calls are automatically recorded and kept in the cloud if you use our inside sales software.) 

Each week, set aside an hour to go over there and take notes. Pay attention to your pacing, stumbling, and missed opportunities so you can enhance your performance next time.

8. Practice making sales calls.

Simply put, the mock sales call is the most important training tool. Before calling a real prospect, you can test out several strategies in a low-pressure environment. I can't suggest these simulated call sessions enough, whether you're a new salesperson or training new sales team members. Take it seriously, stay in character, and keep track of your notes.

You'll need a Bill Buttlicker volunteer.

The Final Note

The more comfortable you become with calling potential customers, the better at closing sales you will become. Build your confidence by training, reviewing your calls, and being honest with yourself.

Realize that sales call resistance is part of the process. You experience it; you examine it, and then you learn to handle it. I know some highly successful salespeople who are still nervous when they pick up the phone after decades in the business. 

However, when you watch them operate, it's impossible to know since they have no control over the involuntary feelings that arise, but they have power over how they respond to them and what they do with them. They certainly don't let it stand in the way of their sales success, and neither should you.

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