Sales Coaching Characteristics of High Income Business Owners and Sales Professionals

Sales Coaching Characteristics of High Income Business Owners and Sales Professionals

In my sales coaching practice, I work with a lot of business owners, high end sales professionals, and other business coaches and consultants. Over the last twenty-two years, I have identified five characteristics that these top performers have.

These five major components are (1) desire, (2) beliefs, (3) behaviors, (4) obstacles, and (5) keys for success.

The first and most important one is desire.

When we look at desire, it sort of takes on a lot of different shades, if you will. There’s desire that “I’d like to make more money” or “it would be nice to make more money” or “really I’m serious about making more money”.  But none of those really result in a person making more money.

The only thing that I have ever found in coaching salespeople or business owners about making more money, the only mindset that I have ever found that gets the job done is what Earl Nightingale called a “magnificent obsession.”

That’s not new and it’s certainly not unique to sales and it’s not unique to business.  Every high-performance endeavor in life whether it would be winning a gold medal in the Olympics or winning seven of them like Michael Phelps did or winning three Super Bowls like the New England Patriots did or any other achievement that you can think about, the people who achieve those kinds of results have a “magnificent obsession” about winning.

The same thing can be said of college football or any other endeavor.

The reality is there are very few people in business who possess a “magnificent obsession” for making more money.  While everybody says they want to make more money, there are not more than two or three out of hundred people walking the street that want to make money so bad, that they are willing to do what it takes – as long as it is legal, moral and honest –  to actually make more money.

In Think and Grow Rich, Napoleon Hill writes that the starting point of all achievement is having a burning desire. Earl Nightingale calls it a “magnificent obsession”.  The reality is, I don’t think you will and I know I won’t make any more significant money than I am currently making unless it becomes a burning desire and “magnificent obsession”.

Now if that bothers you and you think there’s something wrong with being obsessed about money that certainly is your prerogative, but I will also tell you, you ain’t going to make more money until you become obsessed about the idea of making more money.

As long as something else is more important to you than making money, you ain’t gonna make a lot more.

I can hear some of you thinking right now, “Well, my family comes first, my church comes second,” blah, blah, blah, you know, whatever.  That’s all well and good.  But realize that money doesn’t have a conscience.  Money is only attracted to people who welcome it and who go about attracting it into their life.

Yes, it’s important to have a good family life.  Yes, it’s important to have good health and a number of other kinds of things.  But until you put money up there close to where those other things are and it becomes the central focus of your attention daily, you’re not going to make a significant sum of additional money.

I’m not making a character assessment here.  Nor am I’m making a value judgment.  You have to decide for yourself how important making money is.  And if it ain’t that important, if it’s not at least up there with everything else in your life that you consider to be important, if it’s not right up there close to what is the number one thing in your life, then you probably aren’t ever going to achieve any significant increase in income.


Perhaps a story will illustrate more clearly the power of a “magnificent” obsession or a burning desire.

As you no doubt know, Socrates was a very wise man.  So, the story goes that one day a young man observed Socrates standing in chest deep water. This young man was so enamored and drawn to Socrates and had such great respect and admiration for him that he waded out to him and said to the great one, “Oh, Socrates, I would give anything to be as wise and as knowledgeable as you are.”

Without saying a word, Socrates grabbed the young man by shoulders, pushed him underwater and held him.

The young man thought to himself as he was under the water, “That’s a strange reaction to what I just said.”

Ten seconds passed, then fifteen, then twenty, then thirty and the young man begin to get a little bit concerned about being held under the water that long.

Forty-five seconds passed and then a minute passed and the young man was really, really struggling for all his might to come to the surface.

The more that young man struggled, the more Socrates held him under the water.  At about a minute and a half, the young man was very close to passing out and absolutely thought he was going to die.

Just before the young man passed out, Socrates lifted him out of the water and looked directly into his eyes and said, “When you want to know what I know as badly as you just wanted to take another breath, then you will know what I know but not until.”

That my friend, is the definition of a burning desire or “magnificent obsession”.

Now, there’s a lot to be learned from that lesson and I would submit to you that until you want to make more money as badly as that young man wanted to take another breath, you probably won’t make a whole lot more money.

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