February 2022 Newsletter How to handle REJECTION

How to handle rejection


Out of all the topics I’ve covered in describing how to be successful in business, dealing with rejection is one of my favorites. I could talk about it for hours!


True confession: I DO NOT handle rejection very well at all! If I don’t get THE DEAL, I am not a happy camper! I’m guessing that you feel the same way. No one likes to hear a potential customer say “NO!” or “I am going to use someone else’s services.”


No one deserves the deal more than you do… but ONLY if you feel you have the best product or the best service for them and if you are PASSIONATE about what you bring to the table.


“I take rejection as someone blowing a bugle in my ear to wake me up and get going, rather than retreat.” —Sylvester Stallone



Rejection can be a learning experience that makes you stronger. It sure has done that in my career. Never, ever let being rejected keep you from moving forward. Look at all the successful people in the world who were rejected over and over again but kept going after their dream relentlessly. One of the most notable was Walt Disney, who was rejected over 300 times by lending institutions that refused to give him a loan until finally someone said, “Yes, I will give you the financing you need to build Disneyland.” Walt Disney didn’t give up, and neither should you.


We will dive deeper into REJECTION on my February podcast. Please go to Apple Podcasts, Spotify, the vandeeb YouTube channel,, or your favorite podcast platform and sign up for free to receive my monthly podcasts in your inbox. You will LOVE The Van Deeb Podcast!


I began my real estate career at age 23 on straight commission with no nest egg, which meant that if the customer didn’t say YES, I was in big trouble.


The biggest hurdle is rejection. Be ready for it. The difference between successful people and unsuccessful people is that successful people do all the things the unsuccessful people don’t want to do. When 10 doors are slammed in your face, go to door number 11 enthusiastically, with a smile on your face.” — John Paul DeJoria



When I started selling real estate, my broker told me that if I went on a listing appointment and the customer ended up using another agent instead of me, then I should just move on, forget about it, shrug it off, and look for another prospect. That advice made no sense to me whatsoever. If I did that, how could I find out why they didn’t do business with me, what I could have done differently, and what I did wrong?


Yes, I took NO very, very hard… so against my broker’s advice I would call the customer to ask why they had decided not to work with me. I usually said something like this: “I am sure the agent you are going to use will do a good job for you. However, I am confident you would have been thrilled doing business with me. I have a pad and a pen in my hand. Can you tell me what I could have done differently to have been selected as your agent?”


I can’t begin to tell you how beneficial those conversations were to my career. Most of the time I was told that the agent they picked had said they could get more money for their house. That opened the door for me to explain to them that all real estate agents use the same data, etc. Bottom line: I would open a dialogue with them that usually got me back in the door.


Here’s my advice: Never, ever accept NO for an answer if you know you should get the deal. My attitude then and today is that we should get EVERY deal we go after if we want it. Why should somebody else get it instead of you? I take my business personally, which is probably wrong. However, it’s worked for me in my real estate career and in speaking/coaching. I have never been afraid to tell people how I truly feel, what my motives are, and what a good job I can do for them, and I strongly believe that this is why I rarely have been rejected.



“Never give up! Failure and rejection are only the first step to succeeding.” —Jim Valvano


I want my potential clients to see me and not some robot with canned sales dialogue. You should learn to be comfortable believing you are the BEST person for the job and if they don’t choose you then they will be shortchanging themselves because they will miss out on the opportunity to work with you.


I know without a doubt that I will do an unmatched job for each of my clients, either in my real estate business or speaking and coaching. If I didn’t feel that way, then why should they use me?



“Successful people reject rejection.” —John C. Maxwell



Keep in mind that sometimes you will be rejected because the person who is rejecting you or your business is jealous of your positive mindset or your confidence, or maybe because you’re just too dang happy for them. That has happened to me, and it really stinks. Sometimes they want to hire someone who is just as miserable as they are. Believe it! And guess what you can do about it…absolutely nothing, UNLESS you want to pretend you are in the same negative boat they are. Actually, that does work also. The saying that misery loves company is true in every area of life.


Never fear being rejected. The only thing you need to fear is not trying. Rejection is not fatal. You can use it as a tool to make you stronger, smarter, and more strategic.


I love what Steve Maraboli says about rejection:


“As I look back on my life, I realize that every time I thought I was being rejected from something good, I was actually being redirected to something better.” 


This is so true. Failure creates opportunity, and being rejected should help guide you down a different path that will lead to better results.


You have the God-given ability to overcome rejection and use it as fuel, so don’t ever let it stop you from fulfilling your goals and dreams.

What People in the Audience are Saying…

With Van's passion, humor and experience you can be assured of one thing- your audience is going to get fired-up, built-up, and fully charged –up. As an entrepreneur at the top of his game Van is in the unique position of being able to "talk the talk" because he has "walked the walk". Over the years he has been a great inspiration to me and my staff. Van is a speaker with charisma, humility and impact and he's a difference maker in the lives of the people he touches…"

—George Akers // President, First Mortgage Corp.

I wanted to thank you for coming and speaking with our company today. I thought your presentation was awesome! I was really motivated and inspired by your thoughts and ideas. I will use this motivation to grow my business and my personal life.”

—Justin Pauls // Realtor, Tampa, Florida

We are delighted you will be accepting the award for Omaha’s Top 25 fastest growing companies. Congratulations on your outstanding growth and we wish you continued success.”

—Tracey Fortina // Omaha Chamber of Commerce

Thank you for running such a class act company. It is an honor and a pleasure to be associated with someone such as yourself. I know you are probably one of the most respected businessmen in the region.”

—Dustin Talacko // Realtor, Omaha, Nebraska

Congratulations on writing “Selling from the heart” and thank you for sharing a copy with me. Your class has been one of the most enjoyable classes I’ve ever taken. Your enthusiasm and passion for your work are awesome. But the most refreshing part of the class was your delightful sense of humor. Thank you again for being a fantastic teacher.”

—Linda Reismeiler // Student at Randall School of Real Estate, Omaha, Nebraska

Kudos to you, Van, for reaching a major goal. But more than that...For successfully building one of Omaha’s best companies from scratch and making it thrive even in less than ideal market conditions. You have realized the American Dream...And brought it home to many, many others. My best to you!”

—Todd Andrews, Anchor and Producer, KETV Omaha

Having you here again was such a blessing to so many! As I looked at the pictures, I could see just how interested each and every person was in what you had to say!

This has been such a gift to our agents when they need it the most. The fact that you come, you are so genuine and caring, you are so honest, you are not trying to sell anything and your passion to help each and every person believe in themselves and become the best they can be is HUGE! The timing is perfect for us all helping and caring about each other, so, thank YOU from the bottom of my heart for giving of yourself to help all of us!”

—Carolyn Summerton // First Mortgage Company of Idaho

I enjoyed your seminar and its focus. I was on the fence whether or not to attend and decided why not? I could have sat through an all day session if there was one, usually I end up at the seminars that start with a focus and quickly go astray. I found with yours time flew by too fast and it was already time to go but I wasn’t ready to go.”

—Scott Asbill, CDPE // Associate Broker, Realtor