How Practicing Hunger, Hustle and Humility Can Transform Your Personal Life and Sales Career

For a few years now, thanks in large part to a best-selling book, the three H’s of hunger, hustle and humility have been buzzwords in C-level offices all over the United States.

Unfortunately, the book leaves everyone on the lower floors out in the cold because it is specifically targeted at those in leadership positions. To be more precise, the book theorizes that being humble, staying hungry and always hustling – in that order – is the can’t miss formula for leadership success.

While the author is not wrong about the three H’s, he has missed the boat on a couple of major points. First, the three H’s can be applied by anyone who dreams of being more successful whether it be in their personal lives or in their sales careers. Second, the three H’s need to flow in the following order:


Hunger: Without the desire to be a more successful sales professional, there is no motivation to make the necessary changes and to do the work that will make it happen. Even if your goal is a modest one, the hunger simply must come first or there’s no reason to change.


Hustle: Having identified your goal and what you need to change to achieve it, understand there is only one way to get there… hard work! Give it all you’ve got and once you’ve achieved your goal, you will have created a roadmap and a work habit that will stay with you for the rest of your life.


Humble: This one’s a no brainer for the third spot. After all, without hunger and hustle driving you to new heights, what do you have to be humble about? Decide you want a big stick and then do the work to get that stick. Once you have it, then you can worry about walking quietly. Staying humble provides you with several benefits. These include more self-control, better relationships, and better leadership skills.

While not a professional salesman in the truest sense, Hall of Fame golfer Gary Player exemplifies the three H’s when applied in the correct order. As a 15-year-old growing up on a farm in South Africa, Player’s father asked him what he planned to do for a living. He replied that he was going to be the No. 1 golfer in the world.

“Are you sure about that, son?” replied an unconvinced Player Sr. “There are a lot of very good golfers out there.”

“I know,” the younger Player replied. “But I’m going to outwork all of them.”

Today, having followed his passion for golf (Hunger) and gaining a reputation as the hardest working player on the global tour (Hustle), Player is quietly retired in Florida with nine major championship trophies scattered around his living room. Although you’d never know it by talking to him (Humble), that ties him for 4th on the all-time list, trailing only Jack Nicklaus, Tiger Woods and Walter Hagen.

So, find something that makes you hungry – even if all you want is the Employee of the Month parking spot – and then will yourself to develop the habits to get you to where you want to go. Then, and only then, will it be time to work on staying humble.


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Why So Few People Are Successful In Sales

According to recent Labor Department statistics, there are currently more than 155 million people working one job or another around the United States.

Of that number, only about 10% of workers are officially in sales although it is a generally accepted fact that most people do end up selling either directly or indirectly, even if it’s not part of their formal job description. But, that’s another topic for another day.

For now, let’s just go work with 15 million as the official number of people who work in the sales industry as we consider some other interesting statistics:

  • Only 10% of salespeople are successful

  • Only 10% of successful salespeople enjoy above-average success

So, what does all this mean for one of the oldest professions known to man? It means that out of a workforce of over 155 million people, just 150,000 salespeople achieve the kind of success they dreamt about when they entered the profession.

The Real Reasons Why Salespeople Aren’t More Successful

There are many reasons why salespeople aren’t more successful as any quick Google search will attest. Page after page of results will give you the top reasons why salespeople fail with most articles tending to focus on the usual suspects such as:

No sense of urgency

  • Being unorganized

  • Negative attitude

  • Poor work ethic

  • Lack of planning

  • Limited sales training

  • Limited sales coaching

While sales training and sales coaching usually end up at the bottom of these lists (if they make the list at all), the truth is they are the two most important bullet points for employers and sales managers to consider.

training-sessionProvide your team access to well-conceived, effective and ongoing sales training and sales coaching and it will provide them with the skills they need to eliminate any barrier to success you might find on a Top 10 list on the internet.

As their skills improve, so will their confidence and their desire to sell more. Not only will this be good for them and their careers, it will also help your company get to where you want it to be, resulting in a win-win for everyone.

The Five Dysfunctions of a Sales Team

Any high-performing sales team must have strict processes in place and focus on the organization of the team. Sales managers must hit quarterly and monthly goals, but they must also have the cooperation of the sales team. Sale reps also have personal goals and aren’t likely to care about how other sales reps fare. In some cases, incentives for the most sales creates an environment where salespeople sabotage each other to get ahead. Most teams have some of these five distinct dysfunctions that keep them from success.


The Five Dysfunctions of a Sales Team Include:


No Trust

If sales reps on the team don’t trust each other, they can’t take action or say anything because they’re fearful of blowback. Trust is the foundation of sales team success, and nothing happens without it. Sales managers should make this a priority. You can build trust within your sales team by spending more time with them, ensuring you are communicating effectively, hold your sales team accountable,



Too Much Conflict

While you should always strive to minimize conflict, you must also be willing to address it quickly to ‘nip it in the bud.’ When team members trust each other, they know that they can voice their opinion or say what they feel without it being considered a personal attack. However, if you are experiencing higher levels of conflict within your sales team, make sure that you put guidelines in place to manage that conflict in a practical way.


Too Little Commitment

While being part of the goal-setting or decision-making process is a start, these methods only give salespeople partial commitment to the company. Without commitment, there is no action. Everyone should be committed to the success of the sales team as a single unit. When your sales team is aligned in such a way, sales goals are much easier to achieve because your sales reps can communicate openly and rely on one another to help when needed. Your sales reps should be at such a place where they are able to openly agree/disagree with others and explain why they disagreed/agreed.


No Accountability

Most of the time, people think accountability is only for the sales manager, but every salesperson needs to be accountable to themselves, the team, and the department. When your team is held accountable your team works better together and the entire group operates more smoothly. Avoid using accountability as a means of punishment but try to work it in as a way to better operate as a single unit.


Not Getting Results

While all these dysfunctions need to be addressed and can help you deal with the inability to see results, everyone has to do their work and perform their best to get those results. When all the other elements are in play, it’s easier to get work done and achieve those results.

Strengthen your sales management and sales coaching skills with Lincoln Leadership.



5 Strategies to Promote Employee Engagement


Keeping the engagement levels at the workplace high is crucial for your business to function properly. Poor engagement means low energy levels which leads to a decrease in productivity. Here’s how you can promote employee engagement.

1. Allow Breaks

The first thing you can do to promote employee engagement is to allow breaks. This doesn’t mean to only let your employees have breaks but also to encourage them to do so. Resting is essential for being energized afterward, so it’s only natural that you allow breaks.


2. Encourage Flexibilitygroup-of-engaged-employees

Flexibility is one of the key components of almost everything in our modern world where everything is constantly changing. People must learn how to adapt or they will be overpowered by the ever-changing world.

One of the biggest misconceptions employers believe in is that employees can’t manage their own job without the close watch from those above them. The opposite is actually true more often than not. Most competent employees are able to adjust their schedule in a way that will be most effective for them. This is because your workers know their strengths, weaknesses, and the work effort required for any given task better than you do and may be able to rearrange their to-do list accordingly.

Don’t be afraid to give your employees more freedom in terms of working hours. Flexibility has been proven to make people more productive, engaged, and happier. If you are still doubting whether it is a good decision, you can test this strategy for a week and see whether the engagement levels have risen or not. Then, you can decide if you want to keep it this way.’


3. Be Authentic

“Authenticity is so rare nowadays. It is hard to come across something truly original, but being creative is still possible if you try hard enough. Just make sure that you don’t copy something else entirely whether intentionally or by mistake,” says Marie Fincher, Head of Content at Trust My Paper.

Just like authenticity is related to originality, it also has a direct connection with sincerity and mutually beneficial relationships between you and your employees. Being truthful with your workers makes them trust you more and allows them to open up to you when they need to.

There should be no sugarcoating in your workplace. If you are hiding something important, then there is no way that you will have a good relationship with your employees. You have to trust them with information and they will trust you in return. Moreover, pretentious behavior and falsified relationships will be easily detected and you will never be trusted again.

You must be a mentor to your team. Being reliable and motivating your employees will improve employee engagement and make them more involved in the processes. Likewise, it also promotes teamwork, lifting the team spirit. Your workers will trust you more and they will trust and rely on each other more.


4. Ask For Feedback

One of the biggest mistakes many employers make is being authoritative and making all the decisions by themselves. But doing so doesn’t position you as a part of the team. Instead, it makes you look like one of those nasty bosses and distances you from your employees.

Make sure not to make this terrible mistake as this can only lead to problems. There is a simple way to avoid such situations which is to ask for feedback from your team. They will gladly tell you about their opinions on the matter and you will get different perspectives about the issue.

Asking for feedback also shows your employees that you value them and their input and want to see them being involved in the process more. It makes them more engaged and raises their self-esteem. Asking for feedback is essential for the well-being of your organization, so you must never overlook this important component of any business structure.


5. Reward Generously

Last but not least, remember to reward your team generously. You have to appreciate all their efforts and show them that you value what they do (not just by asking for feedback but also by rewarding them).

There are different ways you can reward your employees. The simplest is to thank them at group meetings or individually. They will appreciate even such a small gesture from your side. Another way to do this is to promote them to a higher position if they have earned it. If your employee has been working in your organization for quite some time and has shown great results, you may want to give them a more important role in your company.

Another great idea is to give your employees gifts or awards. For example, a box of chocolates or pizza for everyone is perfect for celebrating a milestone you reached. You can also host the end of year awards or even monthly awards to make your best workers feel special.

In addition to all of the above, consider giving your employees a day off or provide them with a longer vacation. It’s all up to you how you decide to reward your employees, but as long as you don’t forget to do it, your workers will stay motivated to continue working to their fullest.


Final Thoughts

In conclusion, if your employees are struggling with staying motivated, using these strategies will help you promote engagement and increase energy levels in your team. Follow the advice in this article to achieve the best results you could think of.


The 20x Rule in Sales


If you’re like most people, you’ve never heard of the 20x rule, but you have heard of the 10x rule. The 20x rule is something that you should consider and implement from this moment on. In any business setting (and life in general), you must sow 20 times the seeds that you think are necessary or realistic to make anything happen.

Therefore, you have to put in 20 times the effort that you normally would put into your sales activities and your personal growth goals. The 20x rule in sales is applied to business and life.

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Questions to Consider

What would happen if you reached out to 100 prospects each day instead of five? What would happen if you cold-called 40 prospective clients each week instead of two? What happened if you learned the features and benefits of 60 products a year instead of just three?

Top sales professionals study, practice, & master there cold calling so that each of the 100 prospects you are reaching out to is listening to a professional that has a solution to their problem.

Regardless of what you sell, you need to know the products well. You also need to reach out to new people and network 20x more because they aren’t likely to fall in your lap on the first 2 calls. Some might, but most of them are going to require that you call them multiple times. Reaching as many prospective customers as you can is the key to steady growth for any business. If you have already reached out before you have established trust and rapport. Trust and rapport makes it easier to build a meaningful relationship with your prospects.

Test the 20x Rule Theory

Anyone can use the 20x rule in sales. All they have to do is put in more than they think they need. For example, if you plan to print five new brochures and hand them out to people passing by the office, you should instead print 100 brochures and hand them out.

In sales, this is a powerful tool. If the customer is engaged in the conversation, you have their attention, and their interest. Of course, this is only achieved by building trust and rapport through consistent and professional touch points throughout the buying cyce.


Keep It Simple

On sales calls, it can be tempting to keep adding to options, ideas, possibilities, and considerations. However, when you are on the phone, there is no way that you can see the expression on the customers face, there is a good chance of losing them in the what-ifs or even talking them out of a sale by presenting too many alternative options.

Keep it simple and stick to your plan. So reach out to them 20x more than you normally would and keep it simple. When they are ready, they will open up and you can take advantage of your hard work by providing the solution they are looking for.

If another challenge or issue comes up in the conversation, make a note of it and ask the customer if this is something, they would like to discuss the next call. This is a great way to set up a follow-up call, which is now much easier to prep for as you have a topic and an understanding of the customer and her or his goals, objectives, and problems that your product or service can solve.


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