“I sense some hesitation in you?”
You don’t need to overcomplicate labeling; it is often remarkably effective to say something along the lines of “I sense some hesitation in you on this matter” or “Tell me what you’re thinking.”
I sometimes ask people I know well to verbalize their thoughts when they seem distant. It works magic and always drags the conversation down to earth again.
Our worries are like hot-air balloons in our mind, ready to take off with our focus at any given time.
It would help if you never feared that clients reinforce their hesitations by saying them aloud. That never happens. Most doubts and reservations collapse under the weight of daylight, and even if they don’t, you know where you need to whittle away at your negotiation partner a bit more. Hesitation and doubt, however, can fester in the mind and render deals unobtainable.
But what if their concerns are unfair?
Does it matter?
A concern felt by the client is a concern that can stop a deal. In that sense, it is real, regardless of validity or fairness.
Maybe they think your nose is too big for the stage. Maybe they don’t like the color palette in your slides.
If the worry of the client is unfounded, it will, of course, be straightforward to remedy. But only if you know what tigers they see hiding in the bushes.
If you think they are unwilling to commit because your requested fee of $7500 US is too high and spend your time arguing against it, it may be a complete waste. Maybe they are worried that you don’t know their business niche well enough.
They may commit to the $7500 in an instant when you provide proof of expertise in their field.
My point is, you can’t know if you don’t ask. Trust the sunlight to dissolve worries.