Hard-wired for Success?

A couple years ago, a salesman friend told me a story that I felt others could benefit from hearing.

Here is the story, as told it to me.

“Several years ago, I was at a sales motivation seminar with some others from the company.

The speaker opened the event with this challenge:

“Are you are hard-wired for success, or failure, and either way,what are you going to do about it?

Hearing those words made me very uncomfortable, but they got my attention (his first goal).

The speaker’s message was along these lines.

Selling is not some mechanical process where you robotically just go through the motions. It takes a live communication between you and another human being.

Further, if you’re not interested in helping the prospect you’re selling to, you should quit this job and find something more suitable.

At that point something dawned on me as my early morning fog began to lift. He had just subtly (if dramatically) accomplished two important things all in a space of less than a minute:

He got our attention and our agreement, the goal of any sales process.

Thus began one of the most important days in my career in selling.

I saw the importance of live communication – meaning it wasn’t canned, pre-programmed, rehearsed or anything else. This guy really meant what he was saying and he was speaking from the heart. He wasn’t interested in wasting his time on people who weren’t serious about learning how to sell better.

He also got our attention and our agreement that we could use the help that was there to give us.

And, was it my imagination, or did his tone seem to soften once he saw that we all were now interested in what he was saying?

He went on, with some ferocity,

“Losing is an addiction. If you’re a dedicated loser, no amount of failure is enough. You’ll keep trying to lose no matter what comes your way.

Some people are hard-wired to lose and not only do they expect to lose, they keep working at it until they do.

Others are hard-wired to win and they expect to win. They don’t give up until they do.

Which one are you?”

“Okay, now that I have your attention,” he said, his voice softening, “I’ll let you in on a secret that might make you a little more comfortable.”

“If you’re still here in this seminar, at this moment, you are not a dedicated loser!” There is hope because the true losers either didn’t show up or they’ve already left.”

He went on to say that very few people actually expect to lose. Most people always retain some inkling of hope that somehow things will work out in their favor.

The words of Henry David Thoreau rang true when he said,

Men are born to succeed, not to fail.”

The answer to the question about being hard-wired for success or failure is this. There is no “failure DNA” that you’re born with. You were born with the same potential for success and growth as every other person ever born. There is no such thing as being hardwired for failure.

What you do with your potential is the determining factor on your degree of success. Only you can determine that.

Set your sights high. Strive to be the best at what you do. If you really want to succeed, the first law is “Show Up.” Get in the game. Nobody ever hit a home run sitting in the bleachers.

Get into action. You are better than you think you are. Use what you’ve got right now and improve it.

With practice, you’ll start believing that you really are the winner you were born to be.


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