Tough Times Never Last, But Tough People Do
~ Dr. Robert Schuller
I remember when I was transitioning out of the health club business and into the stockbroker profession, I was faced with one of my greatest professional challenges. Anyone desiring to be a stockbroker in the U.S. must take the General Securities Representative Examination, which is often referred to as the Series 7 or Stockbroker Exam. The exam is a six-hour test of your knowledge, skills and integrity. I didn’t realize how difficult and how much dedication I had to put into this exam, in order to pass.
During this time, I was going to school and studying for the test, leaving one business and trying to get my license for a new business. I studied relentlessly and remember there was so much material to learn in a short period of time. I was never a person who found it easy to study and retain information in preparation for a test. But I am smart, I study and I’m always committed. This test was going to take all my strength and dedication. I spent months studying to prepare for a business I knew nothing about.
The first time I took the test, I failed by 3 points. I was disappointed and upset because I know how much time and effort I put into trying to pass. I went back to the drawing board and started again and studied harder – more time, more effort , 3 more months of agony. My bank account was draining. I was stressed and overwhelmed, but it was time to take the test again. I failed again – one point from passing. I was more than upset. Everything and all of the hard work meant nothing because I could not pass the test. I had never had that feeling, because I had never accepted or had to deal with defeat.
Nevertheless, I would not be defeated. By the time my third attempt at this test came around, I was losing everything. I owned my own house, cars, and motorcycle and now I was watching all my hard work being swept away. My lights were getting shut off, my cars were in jeopardy of getting repossessed. I was at the bottom. But I studied even harder this time. I went to the library and studied 12 hours a day. I was there from open to close.
The day came for the 3rd test. If I didn’t pass, the rules say that I would have had to wait another 6 months before I could re-test. I just couldn’t afford defeat. I passed with a 70 and got my Series 7 license. This was probably the most dedicated I have been in my life when it came to not allowing myself to stop. I pushed when most would quit and say “it’s not for me” and give up. Dedication is what separates success from failure.
In sales, you must learn to be 100% dedicated to what you’re doing. You have to be dedicated in a way that sets you apart from everybody else. Your hard work and dedication will propel you to a level you cannot imagine. Most people go thru life, giving up when things don’t work out and they simply give up. Dedication is what sets you apart from everybody else.
We all know negative people. They come into work negative, constantly unhappy, acting like everything around them is everyone else’s fault and that’s why they cannot succeed. They are no longer dedicated. You have to have a straight path that you constantly pursue, that you truly believe that if you dedicate enough time and effort ,you will become the best.
Many salespeople do not have sufficient dedication. They don’t immerse themselves. They don’t go all the way in. Like Texas Hold ‘Em, if you want to win, you have to be all in – all or nothing. Not once in a while, but all the time. This is what true dedication is all about. We constantly have obstacles thrown at us every day. Overcome them and move forward. Focus on your dedication to your job and your career! You’re a salesperson! Truly you are selling yourself! Dedication is very important. Focus on it.
~ excerpt from The Sales Assassin: Master Your Black Belt in Sales by Anthony Caliendo