Closing deals: 6 reasons we fail negotiations and interviews

Why sometimes we can’t negotiate properly? Does the quality of negations we conduct affect their final outcome? For me, any type of negotiation is equal to closing a deal. After all, when we are negotiating, we want to get something, to achieve something. Therefore, we can consider every negotiation as an attempt to demonstrate to a potential buyer (contract dealer) the value of our product. In their turn, any potential buyer estimates the relevance and value of a given product. The same goes for job offers. If we are looking for a new job or a new contract, then our final goal is to get a job or sign a contract. In this way, we close the deal. For me, this is a kind of a reference point. Therefore, I would like to share some thoughts on why we sometimes fail to close deals.

I have prepared a list of the main reasons why we may fail to close deals and to reach desired results in the process of negotiations. It is important to understand that such reasons are defined broadly, whereas each situation is unique and requires an individual approach to understand your specific needs.


1. Lack of confidence:

  • In oneself. When we lack confidence, we transmit the feeling of insecurity to another person. In such cases, unconsciously and despite ourselves, we arrive at the result we did not want: the interlocutor says “I will think”, “I need time”, “I will study the market better and get back to you”. Such responses can be an indicator that confidence is lacking at some level.
  • In the product. Lack of confidence in a product or service. A person embarks on selling something but does not really believe in a service or the usefulness of a product to a consumer (great value). I had a case: a man sold security and investment packages, but he had doubts about the appropriateness and correctness of the company’s philosophy. His doubts resonated with the audience and it also resonated with him: he did not feel confident and secure promoting a product he did not believe in.
  • In the buying side. It happens so that we meet a person and for some reason at the subconscious level we don’t like them. It may be as simple as that a person is too tall, too thin, too strange, or too different from me. Or we meet a foreigner, and we do not connect because subconsciously we are in conflict with his country. Such feelings appear against our own will, we can’t explain them or even realise that we have them. If we connect with people around us, there is great potential for further negotiations. If, however, for any number of reasons we fail to connect with a person at some level, it is unlikely they will be able to connect with us.

2. Fear to not being chosen:

This is one of the reasons that people feel weak during presentations, negotiations or closing deals. Many people at the subconscious level have this fear. It mainly originates in one’s childhood. For example, a new baby is born, and parents focus on it. This may provoke a feeling of being abandoned (not chosen) in older children. Subsequently, this pattern reproduces itself again and again in adulthood.

3. Not being good enough:

If a person does not feel being good enough, just after negotiations they begin what can be called self-digging: I could have done it better, I have failed to give my best performance. This pattern can lead to the loss of one’s potential or one’s financial stability. It can equally affect private life and company’s performance.

4. The people I’m negotiating with are of a better level:

We are inclined to question our own skills and credentials if people with whom we conduct negotiations are from more affluent families, for example, or they have better education. In such cases, we turn to pose a question: Who am I to be on the same level with them? The same can be said about people from developing countries when they are negotiating with people from developed countries. It is very important in the negotiation process to develop confidence that you and a person who conducts negotiations with you are peers. In this case, there is no need to compete in importance, or to sell yourself for less. Otherwise, we are bound to experience an imbalance in negotiations.

5. Benefit from an non-closed deal:

We all know that ‘standing out’ is not always a good sign. We might be concerned that being different means being unliked and unwelcomed. Due to this reason some people subconsciously prefer to break the chain: I work for a company — I close the deals properly — I am different from the group by failing their deals. One might also fail deals because closing them brings income. This paradox works the following way: a deal is nearly always about more money and if a person does not realise what he needs this money for he would fail the deal subconsciously securing himself.

6. Lack of productive states of mind:

Numerous studies show that when we are relaxed, confident and certain we are highly productive and have higher capacity in closing deals. The challenge is that many people just do not know how to achieve a state of feeling relaxed, certain and confident. As a result, even if we are really eager to close a deal, but do not possess these essential skills, we will feel blocked and restricted in our abilities.

Not many of us know that all these matters can be analysed and corrected. The truth is that we are capable of developing an ability to feel relaxed, certain and confident. Likewise, we are able to develop the skills that help us to convince ourselves that we are in power to close deals and lead successful negotiations.

Just one example. I worked with a lawyer who for a number of years was not able to close a deal. The judge deferred decisions, other issues came in between. On the one hand, we can say that it was good for him: as long as a deal was open this lawyer was making money. But the man was very ambitious and this way of earning did not suit him. He wanted to win the case and close the deal. We examined the situation from different angles and found out that he was subconsciously afraid of the defending lawyer, who was very rude, assertive, full of negative emotions. We have developed a strategy on how to find an approach to this lawyer, how to behave with him, and how to appeal to a judge. After that, the deal was closed and the case was won. This case shows how you can train your mind, train your capacity, train yourself to influence your emotions. In other words, how you become more influential and more capable in subconsciously influencing people.

Many things are possible if you work on your mindset; if you work on your capacity to feel; if you know how to manage your emotions; how to manage your state of mind. Challenging yourself on a higher level, it is possible to win even those deals which seemed to be unrealistic before.

Do you recognise any of your own personal concerns in the reasons presented above? If you want to further develop your skills to negotiate and close deals or you feel being restrained by some obstacles, which prevent you from opening up your full communicative potential, you are warmly welcome to get in touch with me. Together we can look in your specific situation, assess your needs and develop a unique suitable strategy.

Please, share this article with any of your friends and colleagues who you think may benefit from better understanding of the reasons behind their anxieties and troubles in negotiations.

What insights have occurred to you while reading the article? Please share in the comments below.

“All the world’s a stage,

And all the men and women merely players…”

(W. Shakespeare, As You Like It)

We believe that each and every one of us is not only a leading actor but first and foremost a writer of our own destiny. Overwhelmed by life events, we may unintentionally forget that we are the sole playwrights of our own lives. We may even unwittingly drop or lose the thread of our unfolding life story. Then, we start questioning ourselves and let others do the writing for us. Doesn’t this happen to all of us occasionally? The best thing we can do is to resume the leadership as soon as we can: only we should write the play of our life!

With the renewed confidence and new skills, we design new perspectives. Coaching and training are the best instruments we use to achieve this goal.




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