Why Some Do and Some Don’t Succeed in Sales

Succeeding in SalesFor years a question has bothered me. Coming from failure to a degree of financial success and then becoming a trainer, I have seen and personally experienced a wide range of conditions. I have been very low on money, achievement, and self-image, and have changed all that for the self-image and actual substance of success. What constantly impresses me is how little difference there is between successful and unsuccessful people in intelligence and, very often in how hard they work. Being a failure, or getting by only through long hours of labor is not easier than being a roaring success – in fact, it’s whole lot harder.

The question that has troubled me from the beginning of my training career until recently is this: What is the essential difference between the all-around successes and the people who are all-around failures?

On one hand, we see people who stay happy, healthy and high on themselves; keep their humility; thank God for their blessings and achieve tremendous success in their lives. On the other hand we see people who can’t manage to achieve any of these things. Exactly what causes that enormous difference between those two groups of people who have essentially the same mental equipment to begin with?

After many years of reflection on this point, I’ve finally come to the conclusion that it’s entirely a matter of self-image. Those who succeed greatly have a great self-image. Those who fail miserably have a miserable self-image. From this it’s clear that in order to change a pattern of failure into a pattern of success, we must first change our self-images from miserable to great.

People succeed because they believe, not only that they can and will succeed, but also that success is worth the price they must pay for it. Believing that, they try harder, and this soon proves to them that determination creates growth. As they grow, the self-images that they are winners build in their minds. The sense that they are making an important contribution to the world grows within them; and they are no longer  content to be passengers on the highway of life – they must drive the biggest rig they can handle. Their talents, self-images, energies, and successes grow into a stable structure that spins powerfully throughout their active lives, generating enormous currents of productivity as it whirls.

That sort of self-image isn’t created overnight. It’s the product – the inevitable, certain, absolutely sure product – of the determination to pay the price of success. An inescapable part of that price is to accept the fact that success is a many-headed thing. A successful life cannot depend on the achievement of a single goal that other people might deny you.

If you make the decision to pay the price of many-headed success by forming a closed loop of greater effort and greater self-image, you will be successful.

SELF-INSTRUCTION: “Success is worth far more than its price. I’m a driver in this world, not a passenger. I’m a shaker and a doer. I love to go at it all out. Because I’m such a driver, I’m growing rapidly in knowledge, influence, power and wealth.”

Excerpted from The Official Guide to Success hard cover book by Tom Hopkins.

Copyright Tom Hopkins International, Inc. For reprint permission, contact Judy Slack (judys@tomhopkins.com).



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  1. Hi Tom went on a course of yours when you were in Johannesburg .SA in the Mid 80, i still use your great work,my Son now uses your greatbooks. THANK YOU FOR BEING THE TRUE PRO?
    Go well

  2. A great blog, thanks Tom.

  3. I have read your stuff for years. You are awesome and one of the best!!

  4. Amazing

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