Four Steps to Boost Your Sales Persistence by Jae-ann Rock

Posted on Nov 3, 2015 in Blog, Meeting/Event Planning, Training and HR

LACK OF PERSISTENCE is one of the most common causes of failure in business and in sales! The good news is, persistence is a state of mind which can be cultivated, developed and grown.ROCK, JAE- ANN, SMILING - WEB

One of the original personal success gurus, Napoleon Hill, believed that despite unexpected setbacks in life, the one thing that you can always control is “your mind and your attitude.” This is great news – IF you put it to use!

In his book, Think and Grow Rich, Napoleon Hill told a compelling tale about a man named R.U. Darby, to demonstrate the power of persistence. 

You see, Darby had an uncle with “gold fever” who traveled west, staked his claim, and began digging. After some work, when he discovered a vein of ore, he returned home to raise money to buy equipment necessary to bring the ore to the surface.

Darby joined his uncle in the fund raising efforts, then traveled with him back to the mine. After some good success with the new equipment, they found enough gold to pay off their debts. Soon afterwards, the vein of ore disappeared. In frustration, they ended their gold mining operation, sold the equipment to a junk man for a few hundred dollars, and went home to repay their debts.

Meanwhile, the industrious junk man hired a mining engineer, who determined that Darby and his uncle had stopped digging just three feet from a huge vein of gold. The junk man went on to make millions from the mine.

Darby had given up too soon. He had lost a large fortune simply because he had STOPPED digging three feet from gold!

“Persistence is the quality that allows someone to continue doing something…beyond the usual, expected, or normal time.” – Merriam-Webster dictionary (Emphasis is my own.)

The truth is, most people lack persistence. People often quit when faced with defeat. Research studies have revealed that:

  • 44% of sales people give up after one “no”
  • 22% give up after two “no’s”
  • 14% give up after three “no’s”
  • 12% give up after four “no’s”

Just think – if you’re in sales, and you give up after four “no’s”, you’re likely leaving money on the table.

You could have been three feet from the gold!


The key to my own sales success has been my “polite persistence” – my deep-seated belief that prospects NEEDED the solution I offered. Only I could control this belief. I had to remain consciously focused and positive. And, it payed off. Over the years, many clients have informed me that the reason I ultimately won their business was because I was “politely persistent” and never gave up. That’s the inner fortitude it takes to achieve success.

NEVER stop reaching out to prospects, even when you hear them say: “No”, “Not now”, or “Not yet”. (The only time you should stop contacting them is if they explicitly say, “Please place me on your do not call list.” or, “Do not contact me again.”) Otherwise, it is imperative you continue to reach out to them repeatedly, providing VALUE at every touch.

Provide prospects with helpful, educational information on a consistent basis. You may offer white papers, webinars, podcasts, or articles with tips, best practice ideas, recent industry research, or any other information which could benefit your prospect.

“Without persistence, you will be defeated.  With persistence you will win.” – Napoleon Hill 

To grow your level of persistence, you must first WANT to make the change.

  • What is the intensity of your desire to change?
  • You MUST remain consistently positive. As Napoleon Hill said, “Intermittent effort will not produce the desired results.”
  • Become very aware of your thoughts.
    • Beware of poverty thinking phrases such as, “I’ll try”, “I hope I can”, “I think I can”.
    • Instead, you must train yourself to think only in terms of abundance: “I CAN…” and, “I WILL…”

You can achieve great things if you follow these FOUR STEPS to strengthen your habit of Persistence:

  1. Develop a definite purpose or goal, and a burning desire to fulfill that goal.
    • To be effective, develop an emotional connection with your purpose. Breathe it and believe it.
    • Connect your sales goals to larger goals in your personal life to help motivate you!
  2. Create a definite plan in writing, with specific steps to reach your goal.
    • Post your plan where you can see it every day.
    • Break larger goals into bite sized chunks – hourly/daily/weekly goals.
    • Determine how many sales calls typically result in a proposal or a sale. Work the numbers to determine how many outreaches you must make per hour, per day, per week to achieve success.
  3. Cultivate a positive mindset.
    • Be conscious of the people with whom you associate; avoid negative influences.
    • Repeatedly say positive things to yourself to enhance your ability to stay on track. (Some of you may remember the old Saturday Night skit, “Daily Affirmation with Stuart Smalley.” If not, Google it… Funny thing is, daily affirmations, or “autosuggestions” as Napoleon Hill called them, have been proven to work. This is because the subconscious mind believes what it hears repeatedly – good or bad. So, make sure it’s hearing POSITIVE things!)
  4. Foster a friendly alliance with people who will encourage and support you.
    • Form a mastermind group to help keep you grounded, accountable, and on track with your goals and plans.
    • Hire a professional coach if needed. It will likely be well worth the investment!

What steps will you take today to create a habit of persistence in sales?  How will you exceed your sales goals? What actions will you take to make them a reality? Are there accounts you’ve given up on? Why? How can you take a different approach to become “politely persistent”?

Don’t give up. Don’t stop. Persevere!

Learn polite persistence and you will achieve greater sales success than you ever thought possible.


Did you know that Mentor Tech Group’s success arose in part, due to the power of persistence?  In 1999, there was no reliable resource offering an accurate, high quality database of corporate training and HR decision-maker contacts, so Mentor Tech Group decided to build a database from scratch – one phone call at a time.

Today, Mentor Tech Group is THE market intelligence leader in corporate training and HR decision-maker information, offering:

Imagine – your sales reps will NO LONGER have to dig around searching for the right contacts to call. Mentor Tech Group has done all the hard work for you!

Stop wasting time with inferior lists. Contact Mentor Tech Group today at: 651-457-8600, Ext. 3.


Leave a Reply