If any cliché exemplifies the concept of bullshit endlessly repeated somehow becoming fact, this is it. Let me say this as clear as I can. There is NO correlation between “attitude,” whatever the heck that is, positive or negative, and sales performance.
I have personally recruited, trained, and worked with sales reps who had attitudes that were not merely bad, they were abysmal and horrific. They epitomized pessimism and yet performed exemplarily. And yes I have had equally successful reps that made Mary Poppins look like a depressive Goth (or if you like the Simpsons, Ed Flanders look like Moe) – reps so cheerful and upbeat it makes you want to retch.
How can this be?
This positive attitude nonsense is the fallback for mediocre coaches and “motivational” speakers that possess no technique. They instead rely on trite sloganeering in an attempt to cover up their ineptitude. They love pep rallies because they are easy – everybody has fun and the speaker is their new buddy. Their training methodology is more religion than science.
Look around. Do you need a “positive attitude” to:
Start a car?
Play a piano?
Bake a cake?
Fix a bicycle?
Catch a fish?
The short answer is no.
If you were lost in the desert and dying of thirst, would you rather have:
A pep talk by Tony Robbins?
A map to the nearest oasis?
Will a “positive attitude” help you out if your car stalls on a train track and moments later is hit by a freight train going 80 miles an hour? Help you pass a test you did not study for? Or pay the bills after you screwed around all month?
Then why is it a widely accepted “fact” that a “positive attitude” is all that matters in sales?
It’s because virtually everything written about sales is bullshit, with the many “experts” following each other around in circles like sheep, plagiarizing each other’s words of wisdom.
If you have a methodology that works, you won’t feel compelled to rely on mysticism and pseudo-scientific, psycho-babble claptrap.
The best way to get a “positive attitude” (if that’s what you really want) is to get positive results, to enjoy success and what success brings to you. This requires that you do precisely those things that naturally bring about the desired results. In sales in comes down (always) to call volume and close ratio. Work your ass off and get good at what you do.
And that, as they say, is that.
Have a nice day!