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Sales Commandment 8: Be Positive--or Else


Guest articles > Sales Commandment 8: Be Positive--or Else


by: Daniel Milstein


If you're not a positive thinker, sales might not be the profession for you. One of the worst things you can do as a salesperson is whine and complain, these negative attitudes are contagious and will affect your team as a whole.

Believe me, there's no seat at the table for complainers. Sales managers, customers and most everyone else hate to be around cry-babies. When salespeople whine about high interest rates, lack of loan or insurance programs, the commission structure, pricing policies or an array of other issues, they are often looking to rationalize their own shortcomings rather than find solutions. It leaves a negative impression on those around them, and can eventually cost them customers who wish to be associated with a more positive environment.

A poor attitude can even cost you your job if it affects the rest of your team. Consider the story about the sales manager who witnessed the 'complaining rash' spreading throughout his office. He recalled that everybody decided to collectively gripe to management about poor interest rates, processing issues and other problems. As he said, 'Those who aren't selling, spend a lot of time talking about how bad rates are, how bad service is and pretty much anything else to give them an excuse for their lack of production. When you're out there pounding the pavement, your focus is selling and therefore rates and service fall out of your chief areas of concern.' The manager's response to the complainers was simple and straightforward: "If it's bad where you are, go somewhere else. If it's bad everywhere, sell something else. If everything you sell is bad, then go drive a bus, because you aren't a salesman."

Everyone has occasional off days when production is not as high as it could be. Perhaps personal issues are interfering and making work seem intolerable. Perhaps your production is sluggish because of the difficult economy. I am the first to admit that selling a loan at 4% is a lot easier than selling a loan when rates are 6%. Extraneous factors come into play and everyone knows there are bad days. However, a positive attitude--about your company and its products, customers, vendors and fellow employees--is critical for success.

Charles Swindoll, the writer and clergyman, had a great philosophy on the importance of having the right attitude. He emphasized that maintaining a positive outlook is critical to the well-being of individuals, families, companies and society in general. Swindoll explained that this is more important than an education, wealth, talent, and just about everything else. He pointed out that it's up to us to start each day with the right attitude and that it is certainly within our power to do so. While he wasn't talking specifically about salespeople, there is an obvious connection.

If we embrace an upbeat attitude, it's inevitable we will gain more personal satisfaction and sales success throughout the day.


Daniel Milstein is the bestselling author of ABC of Sales. For more information, visit:

Contributor: Daniel Milstein

Published here on: 05-May-14

Classification: Sales


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