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Learn to say “No” thoughtfully and respectfully with the focus on creating a high-performance sales culture.


Are you limiting your sales team and the ability to increase sales by not ever saying “No”?

Sometimes, you need to demonstrate sales leadership by just standing up and not saying (or appearing to be saying) “Yes” to everything.

Society frowns on saying “No” because you are believed to be making a negative judgment.

Yet, common sense tells us that not everything is always right or one solution is the only solution. Unfortunately, human beings are conditioned by the behaviors of those around them.

Are You a “Yes” Person?

In many cases, others have observed you, as the sales manager, not saying “No” in such a thoughtful way that it challenges current endeavors.

You appear to be one to go with the flow, never veering from that course of action, a “Yes” person, never thinking that there may be a better way.

As a sales manager, you ask for input from your sales team and receive none because of what your people have observed about your own behaviors.

Then in some cases, those who may have disagreed with you are no longer with your organization. Either they moved on because they believed their input had no value or possibly they were even terminated because they offered a thoughtful “No” to current initiatives.

Sales leadership is about your ability to secure the results while building a unified team where everyone, including you, is working together by doing the best they can do.

If you are a “Yes Man” or “Yes Woman” at the expense of your sales team, how can you increase sales or improve customer retention?

High Performers Know the Power of No

If you are fearful of saying “No”, then look at the organization’s value statement. Identify those values that will reinforce your contrary position.

Remember, there are ways to build a better mousetrap. In today’s highly competitive global marketplace, what you did last year will not necessarily work today.

Learn to say “No” thoughtfully and respectfully with the focus on creating a high-performance sales culture.

About the author

Leanne Hoagland-Smith

Leanne Hoagland-Smith

Leanne Hoagland-Smith has over 25 years in sales. Her true joy is selling and…

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