The Peace & Power of a Positive Perspective


I want…

Recently I commented about sales reps using the “if” word as an excuse when they failed to meet or exceed their quota – see:

That little ditty was inspired by conversations I had with three of my clients on the last day of the first quarter – they were rationalizing why things were not going well. 

I often hear a companion to “if” these days – “I want”.  You see, I typically interact with 4 or 5 sales reps per day (sometimes more).  And competing for business has been challenging in recent times, true?  So, as I work with sales reps on tactics and techniques to “hunt” for business, I’ve picked up on this companion theme of, “I want“. 

It’s not actually new, I suppose; probably has existed since the beginning of sales quotas.  It goes like this:  “Gary, I want more leads.”  You want more leads?  Really?  What a concept!  Reminds me of the 1950’s TV show: 

All I’ve ever wanted was an honest, week’s pay for an honest day’s work.

Sergeant Bilko 

Oh, and it’s not limited to leads:  “I want a lower quota; I want a bigger territory; I want better Sales Engineers; I want more competitive pricing…”  There seems to be no end to what we sales reps “want”, yes? 

But wait – it’s not just sales reps.  I was speaking with an executive of one of my clients who is in the process of recruiting a sales rep.  “Gary, I want a hard worker; I want someone bright.  I want to pay them an entry-level comp plan; but I want them to produce quickly.  I want them to have industry experience and I want them to be able to prospect…”  Really?  Anything else?  Are wants like that reality? 


Having the world’s best idea will do you no good unless you act on it.  People who want milk shouldn’t sit on a stool in the middle of a field in hopes that a cow will back up to them.

                                 Curtis Grant 

And then there are our prospects.  We’ve heard it a million times:  “I want a low price, but I also want advanced functionality.  I want to delay placing my order, but I want to be up and running quickly…”  H.L. Hunt offers this sage advice to our prospects: 

Decide what you want, decide what you are willing to exchange for it.  Establish your priorities and go for it.                                 

Unfortunately, the idea of “exchanging” more money for what they “want” doesn’t seem to be what they want, true? 

You see, it’s nice to want things.  And then reality sets in.  Often, “want” is a mental exercise we go through combining all of the best attributes related to a topic and excluding any of the bad attributes.  It’s one thing to daydream; but when we expect these fantasies to appear in our real world, that’s something different.  Thankfully, our Unknown Sage comes to our rescue: 

If you haven’t got all the things you want, be grateful for the things you don’t have that you didn’t want.                                 

Yes, it’s nice to want things – I want a house on the beach!  That might make me feel successful.  Careful what you ask for though – a beach house in Denver?  Here’s you know who: 

Success is getting what you want; happiness is wanting what you get. 

I guess I should simply be happy with what I have and heed these words from my favorite Unknown Sage. 


Did you like this little ditty?  You might enjoy my book, too:  The Peace & Power of a Positive Perspective©  Please check it out Subscribe.


One Comment

  1. Debbie
    May 23, 2012

    And you think you have heard it all being in sales for so many years.
    Guess not.

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