Many business owners and sales professionals give up too soon in selling. Someone tells you, “The CEO won’t want this”, or “I can’t see how our HR department could use that” – and we move on.
At these times, remember the quote:
Never accept a “no” from someone not empowered to say “yes.”
Why? Because one person in a company does NOT represent the company as a whole. You are getting one person’s perspective – an individual, perhaps even a gatekeeper.
Your goal is to either show enough value in what you are talking about, and at a higher level, so that a gatekeeper will move you on to his or her boss OR if the gatekeeper shuts you down, to find others in the organization to talk with.
You can do this professionally, tactfully, in an empowering manner, and without going over peoples’ heads.
I used to call on Chief Financial Officers to tell them about a tool my company offered which would help a CFO get financial information to shareholders through their company website. This is a hard-to-reach person in a company and I often got an administrative assistant who would sometimes assess and assume that this would not be of interest.
At that point, I either worked to educate the admin on why it would be valuable for her (or him) to send me through, or I would find a board member or someone else to engage with. I always felt that I had options, and this “no” was just a minor stumbling block in getting to the direct decision makers.
Don’t give in so easily – work a plan and know that the “no” is not a personal “no” against you.