Optimism Is A Sales Skill

Optimism Is A Sales Skill

Regarding your sales skills, is the glass half empty or half full?

In this post-recession economy, everyone is looking for a competitive advantage that sets them apart from the competition. Questions abound: Should we get involved in social media? Take a strategic planning session to determine the best course of action. Implement a new marketing plan?

Here’s an idea that won’t cost you any money: Take a look at an emotional intelligence skill: optimism. If you think this is going to be an article in tune with the novel ‘ Pollyanna ‘, don’t despair. There is evidence that optimistic salespeople make more money.

One of the best case studies comes from the work of psychologist Martin Seligman. Dr. Seligman was hired by the Metropolitan Lyfe of New York to help with his turnover challenge. Dr. Seligman convinced Met Life to give him access to new sales leads and to administer the usual tests, as well as a new test he developed to measure optimism.

He tracked the progress of new sales reps for a year and found that salespeople with high levels of optimism sold 33% more insurance than those with low levels. After two years, the bullish sellers were thriving in their positions. Met Life experienced higher staff retention, a lower turnover rate, and increased sales.

How optimistic is your sales organization? People fear catching a cold or the flu. Sellers should worry about catching the pessimism virus.

Pessimism is a deadly virus when it enters a sales organization because emotions are contagious. The clinical term is “emotional contagion” or “mood transmission.”

When people are in a certain mood, happy or depressed, that mood is often communicated to others. So what message or mood is your sales team sending to current or potential customers?

A Sales Manager shares the story of a salesperson who started every conversation during the last crisis with: “You probably don’t have any money…” It was the salesperson who thus established the self-fulfilling prophecy and the prospect followed in the same vein and cut off all possibility of sale.

What can sales organizations do to stop the pessimism epidemic? Here are four traits found in optimistic salespeople and sales organizations. Start installing yourself / or that sales culture today.

4 Characteristics Of Optimistic Salespeople And Sales Teams

1: Faced With Adversity, Optimistic Salespeople Ask Better Questions.

.What’s good about this? The best salespeople know that it is in adversity that character is formed and great lessons are learned. Optimists take advantage of this free training because they know that the lessons learned today will make their money in the future.

.What can I do with this situation? Optimistic salespeople take control because they know that control equals action, action produces results, and results increase motivation.

.What’s fun in this? Humor is a great way to relieve stress and free the mind from creativity, clarity, and innovation.

2: Optimistic Salespeople Choose Their Friends Wisely.

Jim Rohn has a very interesting quote about it: ” You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with .” So ask yourself: Do you associate with optimists or pessimists? What kind of excitement spreads among your peers and colleagues? Is it a healthy conversation or a pessimism? Here is the difference.

The pessimistic seller says that no one buys. The optimistic seller says that some buy… He just needs to find them.

3: Optimistic Salespeople Remember That Adversity Is Temporary, Not Permanent

If the business is a little slow, optimistic salespeople try to speed it up by taking care of their best asset: existing customers. They invest more time in consistent prospecting.

They know that the economy will eventually calm down (all crises pass) and when it does, the potential client will call them, not your competitor who has been sitting in his office sharing sad stories with his pessimistic colleagues.

4: Optimistic Salespeople Manage Results, Not Excuses.

They know that selling is a great profession because they can control their results. The best salespeople look for mentors to help them look at doing business in difficult times in a different way. They outperform their competitors who are still dreaming of “returning to the good old days”.

The best salespeople invest in learning to outsmart and outperform their competitors. Optimistic sellers are not looking for a better life. They make a better life.

Optimism is a “soft” skill that produces “hard” sales results. Bullish salespeople are easy to handle. Sales managers spend less time on drama and sad tales and more time trying to find strategies to open new businesses.


Optimism is a choice. Everyone who reads this article has the option to wake up and opt for something good in their day and their business. It doesn’t mean you don’t pay attention to reality in a tough economy. It just means that you are looking for a better balance between reality and optimism.

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