Talking to People about Your New Business: Are You Fear Focused?

On Monday night, Tanya Smith and Tai Goodwin interviewed me on their BlogTalk Radio show, Your First 20 Clients for a segment, How to Talk to Strangers (and Friends) About Your New Business.

This blog post will be the first in a series based on that show (I’m transcribing it one question at a time).

Today’s question is from 4:00 to 7:00 in the hour-long audio of the show.

Tanya: What are some of the challenges people have around talking to people about their business?

Diane: Well, I think pretty much all the challenges could boil down to two challenges and that would be one, the fear of rejection and judgment,  that other people would be judging them, and then also not being sure of what to say or how best to say it. And probably the bigger challenge is the fear of rejection and judgment.  I know we have all felt like, “Oh, what are they going to think?”  And maybe we’re afraid of saying something stupid or looking foolish.  Have you guys every felt that way? Where you’re a little afraid of what . . .

Tanya: Never (laughter)

Diane: Never, Never, Never . . . (laughter). Not at all, right?

Tanya: Hey, I’m raising my hand over here.

Diane: I can remember years ago making phone calls and that 1000 pound phone! I was just so fearful of picking up that phone, making a phone call.  And then, after you do it for a while, you realize it’s really not that bad.  The fear of it is worse than actually doing it. And I found that my challenge as like many people’s challenge was that I had a fear focus.  I was focused on the fear instead of turning to a success focus and really how good it feels to be successful.

And the other person that you’re talking with is just another person. Most people, they’re just people, just like you are and they will be empathetic with you as long as you’re not pushy.

You know, if you think, “Well, what’s the worst that can happen?”  Really, do ask yourself, “What is the worst that can happen in this situation? And if it happens, what will I do?”

So, if you have a plan in mind . . . what’s the worst that can happen if you are talking to someone on the phone?  The worst they could do is maybe yell at you and hang up?  Well, they haven’t punched you!

So, what will you do if that happens? You just say, if it is someone you don’t even know, “I’ll just chalk that up to experience.”

And, if it is someone you know, you can just contact them later and say, “Hey, I’m sorry if I gave you the wrong impression.”

But, if you know what you’re going to do if the worst happens, then you feel like you are prepared and you don’t have to have quite the same amount of anxiety.

So, those would be what I would say are the biggest challenges and then, not being sure of what to say or how to say it.  You can deal with that a lot of ways . . . through practicing with family and friends . . . to going to networking events so you get a chance to practice what you are going to say. Those kinds of things can be overcome with knowledge and practice.


About Diane Windingland
I speak for organizations that want their people to have better, more profitable conversations.

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