Here is something you’ve heard before. “Attitude is Everything”. If you have been involved in Inside Sales, Outside Sales, or Sales & Marketing, odds are that you have had this phrase permantly etched into your memory bank. Is it really true though? Can your attitude or outlook on life or any given situation really elevate your performance to a higher level? I am here to tell you, I am living proof that your attitude and outlook on things can not only elevate your performance, but it can and will literally make or break you. Your Attitude will be the difference between success or failure in life and most certainly in sales. The key to becoming a success in life and achieving your dreams all boils down to your perception of any given situation and your attitude.
When i started my sales career, way back in 1996, I had no experience and no knowledge of inside or outside sales. It was very safe to say that I was definitely wet behind the ears. The one thing that I did have, however, was the right attitude and a go-getter mentality. Even though I had no sales experience, I was hungry for success and desperate to make a career change. Well actually, I was more than desperate to make a career change. An unfortunate on the job injury had pretty much forced my hand and changed my destiny.
At this point in time, I had two choices in life. I could try to live on a measly couple hundred dollars a week from a disability check, or re-invent myself in some way and learn a new career altogether. Being 24 years old, I wasn’t quite ready to retire, even though it would have been easy for me to give up during a tough time in my life. I also wasn’t ready to sit on my ass for the rest of my life, so I needed to make a change. I was always a person with a positive attitude and my parents did not raise a quitter. Even though my job skills were limited, I had that never say die attitude and go-getter mentality. I knew I was born with the gift of gab, so I figured a career in sales would probably be a natural, easy transition for me, and it was.
It’s kind of funny when I think of it and a little bit ironic. I wasn’t ready to sit on my ass, but yet I chose a career in sales, where I would be sitting and my ass a lot. Don’t feel sorry for me though! Over the years I have really learned to appreciate sitting my ass in a beautiful Italian leather chair, in a nice air conditioned office, while making a shit ton of money. Actually, I learned to love it. The whole experience of being forced to make a career change and then bouncing back stronger than ever, really proved to me that I could do anything I wanted to in this lifetime. For me, it wasn’t about experience, because I had no sales experience. It wasn’t about my training, because the best sales trainer in the world won’t turn a lazy or negative person into a superstar or top performer. It is honestly about having and maintaining a positive attitude day in and day out. It about the way to come across as a person to other people. It’s about greeting customers, clients, and everyone you meet with a smile and not a frown. Having the right attitude can overcome anything and it will take you as far as you want to go in life. Even when you screw up, your customers or clients will still appreciate and still do business with you, if you remain positive and solve your problem or fix the screw up.
It’s all attitude. Every aspect of your day, from start to finish, can and will be influenced by your attitude. Stop and take a look at the people around you. Do you know someone who is always negative? On the flip side of that same coin, Think about someone you know who always has a positive attitude. Take a mental note of what you notice and it will definitely make you look at everything in your life a little different. I promise you that every aspect of your life, or anyone’s life for that matter, is affected by attitude. In life, there will always be ups and downs. Even some of the richest people in the world have at one time failed or another been broke. It is ok to fail in life. We all make mistakes and it’s the smart ones who can bounce back, become stronger, and learn from those mistakes. One thing is for sure though. Feeling sorry for yourself and having a negative attitude will only lead to note failure and more misery. Positive minded people look at the positives in every situation, Even a complete mistake or miserable failure is simply a lessson learned to a person with a naturally positive Attitude.
My sales story: How Attitude made me a success in Sales
I was working 11-12 hours a day for a heating and Air conditioning company doing grunt work and breaking my back. When i say “breaking my back”, believe me I mean it. My job on a daily basis was literally to dispose of old furnaces and heavy boilers and remove them from the clients basement. I was doing a lot of heavy lifting and i absolutely HATED my job. I felt stuck because I had bill to pay and 2 young kids to support. Everyday i would think about my life and wonder why I never went to college. I was actually starting to think that this might be it for me. Long story short I had to make a change and take a risk, no matter what happened. So one day I just walked off the job. I gathered my tool box, put it in my car and drove away. I didnt know what I was going to do and that drive home was a scary one, but this move actually forced me into my destiny.
The next day I was searching the newspaper for Jobs and came across and add for a Telemarking/Sales Position. I had thought about doing sales, but i always thought if i did do sales, it would be like car sales or something like that. I ended up going in for an interview and I decided I was going to give it a shot. I wasn’t necessarily sure that this was the right decision, but i needed a job and at the same time i wanted to try my hand at sales. Once I committed to the job, I pretty much put it in my head that I was going to make a go of this or die trying. I was going to give 100% everyday and learn as much as i could from everyone around me. I had impregnated my mind with this do or die attitude and even though my future was unsure with my back was against the wall, I was going to make this happen. The one thing that really attracted me to this inside sales job, was unlimited earning potential. That is the beauty of a sales job. The harder and smarter you work, the more money you will make. I quickly figured out that I could speed up the learning curve by making a few extra calls an hour and by working through my break. I also practiced my sales pitch with my wife every night and learned my objections until it was like second nature to me. Right from the start, I was making almost double what i was making at the job i had just quit and i knew i had a future in sales. It all fell into place because I believed in myself and had the right attitude. it was do or die and failure was just not an option.
Maintain a positive attitude and you will succeed in sales and in life
We all have the skills and the abilities to do anything we want in life. However, you have to put in the work and you have to have and maintain the right attitude. Any sales position is like a roller coaster ride and there are many ups and downs. If you let any type of negativity affect you attitude even a little bit, it will eat you up and devour you whole. Before you know it, you will be having second thoughts and questioning your abilities. Once you stop believing in yourself and loose that positive do or die attitude, it is all but over. You might as well pack it up and move on to the next venture. If you want to succeed in sales, the first and most important thing to understand is that Attitude is Everything. It is not always easy and there will be ups and downs but anybody with the right attitude and a burning desire to succeed can learn sales and make a very good honest living.