Great Thoughts on Sales, Business and Success VIII

November 24th, 2014

Great Thoughts on Sales, Business and Success 8Need a bit of inspiration? A fresh insight? Or just a good laugh? Check out these powerful quotations. And feel free to share them!

“Each failure to sell will increase your chances for success at your next attempt.” —Og Mandino

“The key to a successful business is not necessarily being the best, but having customers who think you are.” —Susan Palmquist

“Success is often the result of taking a misstep in the right direction.” —Al Bernstein

“Don’t let things that could have been, get in the way of things that still can be.” —Elder Maxwell

“If you obey all the rules, you miss all the fun.” —Katharine Hepburn

“Rowing harder doesn’t help if the boat is headed in the wrong direction.”       —Kenichi Ohmae

“You are a product of your environment. So choose the environment that will best develop you toward your objective. Analyze your life in terms of its environment. Are the things around you helping you toward success – or are they holding you back?” —W. Clement Stone

“Every time you step outside of your comfort zone, you strengthen your courage muscle.” —Donna Amos

“Selling more of what you sell has nothing to do with what you sell. It has everything to do with your prospect’s wants, needs, fears, goals, values and priorities.” —Don Cooper

“I can’t understand why people are frightened by new ideas. I’m frightened of old ones.” —John Cage

“Don’t bother just to be better than your contemporaries or predecessors. Try to be better than yourself.” —William Faulkner

“You can’t operate a company by fear, because the way to eliminate fear is to avoid criticism. And the way to avoid criticism is to do nothing.” —Steve Ross

“Remove those ‘I want you to like me’ stickers from your forehead and, instead, place them where they truly will do the most good –on your mirror!”    —Susan Jeffers

“Would you like me to give you a formula for success? It’s quite simple, really. Double your rate of failure. You are thinking of failure as the enemy of success. But it isn’t as all. You can be discouraged by failure – or you can learn from it. So go ahead and make mistakes. Make all you can. Because, remember, that’s where you will find success.” —Thomas J. Watson

“An ounce of emotion is equal to a ton of facts.” —John Juno

“There are no great limits to growth because there are no limits of human intelligence, imagination & wonder.” —Ronald Reagan

“Making money isn’t the backbone of our guiding purpose; it is the by-product of our guiding purpose.” —Warren Buffett

“You have to believe in yourself when no one else does. That’s what makes you a winner.” —Venus Williams

“The measure of success is not whether you have a tough problem to deal with, but whether it’s the same problem you had last year.” —John Foster Dulles

“If opportunity doesn’t knock, build a door.” —Milton Berle

“Samson killed a thousand men with the jaw bone of an ass. That many sales are killed every day with the same weapon.” —Anonymous

“Folks who never do any more than they get paid for, never get paid for any more than they do.” —Elbert Hubbard

“Some of the best ideas sounded crazy at first. Don’t dismiss yours!” —Cindy Helgason

“Everything about business comes down to PEOPLE. Where in business can we escape the impact of human care, human creativity, human commitment, human frustration, and human despair? There is no reason for anything in business to exist if it does not serve the needs of people.” —Bruce Cryer

“Nothing is a waste of time if you use the experience wisely.” —Auguste Rodin

“Action is the biggest middle finger to doubt.” —John Haydon

“Life is like a taxi. The meter just keeps ticking whether you are getting somewhere or just standing still.” —Lou Erickson

“Don’t let one cloud obliterate the whole sky.” —Anais Nin

“Sometimes when you innovate, you make mistakes. It is best to admit them quickly, and get on with improving your other innovations.” —Steve Jobs

“Personally, I’m always ready to learn, although I do not always like being taught.” —Winston Churchill

“We don’t get what we deserve. We get what we BELIEVE we deserve.” —Don Cooper

For more of my favorite quotations, check out Great Thoughts on Sales, Business and Success Volume I, Volume II, Volume III, Volume IV, Volume V, Volume VI and Volume VII.

What are some of your favorite quotations? Leave them in the comments section below!

Six Sales Activities You Need to Do More Often

November 11th, 2014

Six Sales Activities You Need to Do More OftenYour time is your most precious resource. Are you investing it where it will get you the biggest returns?

Listen to my appearance on Breakthrough Radio with Michele Price. In this seven-minute segment, I share six things you need to be doing more frequently if you want to increase your sales. Allot more time in your day, week and month for these six crucial activities and your sales will soar!

To listen, just click on the link below. Or to download the segment to listen later, right-click the link and select “Save Target As…”

Six Sales Activities You Need to Do More Often: Don Cooper on Breakthrough Radio (mp3)

To learn more about Michele Price and listen to her interview other business experts on Breakthrough Radio (which I highly recommend), check out

Five Giant Sales Lessons

November 3rd, 2014

Giant Sales LessonsHaving been born and raised in the Bay Area, I’m a life-long San Francisco Giants fan. I remember my father taking us to games at Candlestick Park, where even in the middle of summer, cold winds would blow through the stadium and fans would huddle together for warmth.

So as you might imagine, I’ve been ecstatic over the team’s recent success—three World Series titles in the past five years, including a thrilling seven-game affair this year. Each year’s championship run has been different, and has carried different lessons that are applicable to anyone in sales.

Here are five takeaways from the 2014 champion Giants:

Everyone goes through bad times
On June 8, the Giants had 43 wins and 21 losses, the best record in baseball. Over the next 56 games, the Giants went 20-36 (the worst record in baseball during that stretch) and dropped behind the Los Angeles Dodgers for the lead in the National League West division. The outlook for even making the playoffs was bleak.

But they kept playing with everything they had. “Maybe we’re not the best offensive team,” center fielder Gregor Blanco said. “Maybe we’re not the best defensive team. But we play with our heart every single night.”

Whether you’re a salesperson, business owner or CEO, you’re going to go through rough times as well. Keep going.

All you need is a slight edge
Throughout the postseason, the Giants rarely blew out their opponents. Of their twelve wins, eight were by three or fewer runs, and of those, five were by just one run.

You don’t have to be dramatically better than your competition. Just a little.

History is irrelevant
Most analysts expected San Francisco lose Game 7 because history was not on the Giants’ side—the last nine teams to play Game 7 on the road had all lost. When told this fact after the Giants’ Game 6 loss, pitcher Jake Peavy responded, “This bunch doesn’t care. We’re going to show up tomorrow and try to find any which way to win. Nobody in this clubhouse cares about what happened in the past.”

Your past does not equal your future. Just because you failed before, doesn’t mean you’ll fail now. Just because a strategy or a person or an idea didn’t work last time, doesn’t mean it won’t work next time. Every opportunity is a fresh one.

Focus on what you can control
Game 7. Bottom of the ninth inning. Two outs. A fly ball to center gets misplayed, resulting in a runner on third base. Any hit would tie the game. Pitcher Madison Bumgarner ignored the situation he couldn’t control—the runner on third—and focused on the one he could—the batter he was facing. By keeping his focus, Bumgarner was able to get Salvador Perez to pop out, sealing the win for the Giants.

There are lots of things you can’t control: the economy, your competitors, the prospect’s budget and more. Don’t dwell on those things. Focus instead on what you can control: your efforts, your skills, your immediate task at hand.

Get coaching
One of the few blemishes in the series occurred after it was over—when Chevrolet zone manager Rikk Wilde presented Bumgarner—the series MVP—with the keys to a new Chevy pickup truck. Reading from a note card, an obviously nervous Wilde stumbled through an incredibly awkward presentation. A little coaching and practice would have made a huge difference for him.

You only get one chance with a prospect. Be prepared for it. Get coaching from your boss, your colleagues, a mentor or a professional sales coach. And practice, practice, practice!

Baseball and sales have a lot in common—strategy, competition, training, resiliency, teamwork, and more. It takes a lot of effort, knowledge and passion to be successful in either. Are you willing to do what it takes to be a champion?