Do you have a Doomsayer in the team?

Written by Annika Widen

12 kinds of Sales Call Reluctance have been discovered and one of these is the Doomsayer. Fortunately, people with this fear are quite unusual among Sales people. However, I have met some of them in Sales teams during my years in the business. It can be tough to work with them, even for the most positive team member. Their fear is contagious.The Doomsayer always worries and looks for catastrophes everywhere. The manager may not even finish to explain the task before the Doomsayer has explained why it will not work. They concentrate on the risks and possibilities to fail rather than on those to succeed. They lack spontaneity and prefer being in the background. They are not very keen on social activities such as Team building activities and they might have a negative impact on the rest of the team's performance. The origin of this type of Sales Reluctance is in part caused by heredity and therefore difficult to correct.

Can't doomsayers sell, then? Yes, they can. They can also be successful Sales people, but they will not take risks. They would prefer using a sales style that is based on uncovering the customers needs and they would like to follow a certain script. How do you recognize a Doomsayer? Here are some features:

  • They seem kind and gentle but prefer not to take part in social activities
  • Excessively worried about unlikely problems
  • Prepare for the call by learning some presentations by heart
  • They are highly controlled, may seem stiff
  • Become confused when a potential customer answers differently than what expected from the classic sales training scenario
  • They measure success as the absence of failure
  • They are paralyzed by spontaneity


This has absolutely nothing to do with intelligence or willingness to reach success. As with all the other types of Sales Call Reluctance, the Doomsayer does not know that they suffer from this and probably have a hard time to cope with the Sales career.