The survey indicated that defining success is the first step in achieving it. It also revealed that people who don’t have a definition of success feel less successful, earn less, and are less satisfied with their lives and their careers. This survey leads us to believe that, if you don’t have a personal success philosophy – and if you fail to develop achievement-oriented expectations of yourself – it’s unlikely you’ll approach your sales career with a high degree of enthusiasm, no matter how successful your professional abilities are. Psychologists report that identifying what we want as

individuals may well determine professional growth. So, if you’ve failed to consciously develop a philosophy of suc- cess, you’re unconsciously operating on a philosophy of failure. If your life is not guided by a plan, it will be guided by fantasy or daydreams. But wishing and hoping will never replace setting your sights on a goal and working hard to achieve it. To succeed as a person and as a sales professional today, ask yourself: • How do I measure success? • What do I need to change about myself as a person to reach the success I want?

• What do I need to change about myself as a profes- sional to reach the success goals I’ve set?

As the architect and builder of your success, you need to translate your self-expectations into goals. To pursue these goals, you must have a plan for self-motivation and the mental strength to deal with obstacles. Just as your success as a professional depends on three key factors (knowledge, skills, and desire), your success as a person depends on three factors: goals (the management of meaning), motiva- tion (the management of action), and positive thinking (the management of thoughts). These three factors will ultimate- ly determine whether you succeed or fail.

GOALS Mary Kay Ash, the founder of Mary Kay cosmetics, once

said, “Most people plan their vacations better than their lives.” We can take this idea a step further by saying that most people only know where they are going when they go on vacation. If your life is to have meaning, you must have a purpose.

You must have goals. Goals bring your energy into focus. Without them you will experience dissatisfaction, frustra- tion, and a lack of commitment.

First, define and set short-term goals. These are your task management tools for success. For instance, write down the six most important things you have to do each day. Second, define and set long-term goals. They are your meaning management tools. Write down the answers to these questions: What do I want out of life? What do I want out of selling? Where do I want to go? What do I want to achieve three, five, or 10 years from now? Take the time to visualize what it will be like five years from now and see yourself doing what you really want to do. Remember to work on both short- and long-term goals.

There is a curious relationship between the two. The more meaningful your long-term goals, the more effectively you

tackle the short-term ones. And the meaning you find in your long-term goals determines the amount of commit- ment you put into your short-term ones. Without commitment, you don’t have much of a chance. If commitment to your goal is only in your head, you’ll lose it the moment you encounter resistance. But, if commit- ment is in your heart, no amount of resistance can prevent you from pursuing your goals. Don’t let other people set your long-term goals. Take

the time now to consider where you want to go this year, next year, five years from now. Writing out your goals is the first step. Next, edit and revise them regularly. Goals should serve you and stretch you. You don’t want to set goals that are equal to your powers. You want to seek powers that are equal to your goals. Don’t set them too low – make your goals a challenge. Goals should improve your balance, not throw you off balance. If you’re 100% committed to your goals, you’re going to march to your inner drummer. As a result, you’ll make new friends and other people may question your change in behavior. Don’t worry about becoming different from the losers in this world. That’s what you wanted to achieve in the first place. As you advance in the direction of your goals, you will

outdistance familiar faces. Some won’t be able to under- stand you – and even fewer will be able to follow you. But, if your goal is to not change and to not excel and to not be what you can be, you’ll find plenty of company. Isn’t it true that misery loves company? To grow and succeed you must move on. Moving on means saying goodbye to old friends, old habits, and old plans. Goals shouldn’t be considered a final destination. They’re a roadmap for your journey to success. Ultimately, success is not a destination; it is a journey. Daniel Boorstin once wrote in his book, The Discoverers, “The greatest obstacle to discovering the shape of the Earth, the continents, and the ocean was not ignorance, but the illusion of knowledge.” Many salespeople think they understand the process of motivation. But, if they don’t, their illusion of knowledge will prevent them from getting motivated. Motivation is an action management tool. It’s a reason

for acting. Also, action creates motivation. People don’t always go to work because they are motivated but, as they go out and begin their tasks, their physical and mental ac- tions create motivation. Action is only one way for creating motivation; there are many more, like achievement, ideas, rewards, participation, and progress.


A number of years ago, behavioral scientists in Baltimore asked a group of students to take a set of five rings and toss them over cones placed at the other end of the room. When the students asked what distance they should stand from the cones, they were told that it didn’t matter – since the scientists only wanted to study their behavior. The researchers found that one group of students went as close as possible to the cones, tossed the rings over


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