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Posted: July 29, 2013

Top five worst lies salespeople tell themselves

They keep you frustrated, stuck and broke

Liz Wendling

Many people who sell professional services tell themselves lies that prevent them from reaching their sales goals, attracting more clients and earning more money. They lie to themselves about the economy, their prospects and their territory, and why they are not closing sales.

To become more effective at selling professional services, they need to confront what is holding them back from selling their expertise.

Here at the top five worst lies, excuses, reasons or justifications for not closing more sales.

  1. “I don’t have time to sell.” Everyone is busy, but not everyone is busy doing what they really need to do to close more sales. Top salespeople would never use that money-depleting excuse that keeps them stuck and broke. Instead, they say, "I may not have the time, but I sure as heck will make the time for an activity that guarantees my success." There is a part of every day that can be found for selling. You either make time for sales activities – or set yourself up for plenty of free time with no clients and no money.
  2.  “I don’t like selling.” If you loved selling, chances are you would have become a full-time salesperson. Professional service providers go into business because they love their client work. You’re a CPA, attorney, accountant, dentist, financial planner or insurance agent first and a business builder and revenue generator second.  Maybe you tell yourself you don’t want be associated with those pushy or aggressive salespeople. Perhaps you believe your work should speak for itself, and selling is demeaning. Get over it. That lie is holding you back and keeping you from attracting clients and earning a great living.
  3. “I’m not that good at selling myself and my services.” There is only one way around that. When you are unsure how to do something, you find a way and learn. Understand how to sell yourself and your services using an approach that makes you and your prospects feel relaxed and open. When you are uncomfortable or dislike selling, it will be evident to your prospects. If you are uneasy, it makes it difficult for people to trust you and choose to work with you. Uncomfortable prospects don’t buy! Learn the skills necessary so you can grow your business.
  4. “I’d rather do marketing than selling.” Marketing is not selling, and you must merge both to be successful. Your marketing efforts get people to notice you. Your sales skills get them to say YES to you. If you’re not able to convert interested prospects into invested clients, your marketing dollars are wasted and your efforts are meaningless. Knowing how to sell and understanding exactly what you need to do when your marketing efforts find qualified prospects is priceless.
  5.  “I don’t want to be pushy or sales-y.” Good! No one else wants you to be that way either. No one I know is looking for pushy, sales-y and aggressive salespeople. This is a poor excuse for not being successful. It’s one of those excuses that people use to give themselves permission to not sell at all. The only fix to this is to update your sales approach. Sell in a way that will never be perceived as pushy or sales-y. You have a choice in how you sell and how you show up. You have a choice in the approach you use. Your approach is either attracting clients or repelling clients.

Don’t let the lies, bad excuses, poor reasons and damaging justifications get in the way of selling yourself and your professional services.  If you want to succeed, you must never let these lies leave your lips.


Liz Wendling is the president of Insight Business Consultants, a nationally recognized business consultant, sales strategist and emotional intelligence coach. Liz is driven by her passion for business and generating results for her clients. Liz understands the challenges that business owners are facing building a business and selling their professional services in today's market.

Liz shows clients how to tap into and use their innate strength, power and confidence to develop highly successful businesses. She teaches them to create effective, dynamic and fluid client conversations that turn interested prospects into invested clients who keep coming back.

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Readers Respond

Its so true and yet I have so many sales reps that flat out lie to me in the interview and sell me on them being this great salesperson, then they fall into these traps. I wish people would just be more honest with themselves prior to seeking a sales job. It's a numbers game people, if you refuse to make cold/warm calls to the right prospects on a daily basis then you will not succeed. By Steve Felt on 2013 08 12
I am guilty of 4 out of the 5 lies. Thanks for sharing your expertise! By Diane on 2013 07 29
Great advice, thanks ! Here are 2 more I love to hate...Cold calling never works and nobody likes to make cold- calls. Bolderdash !! By Jordan Greenberg on 2013 07 29
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