Yesterday got me thinking more about why some people succeed more than others.

One thing stands out for me.

And that is an attitude of constant improvement.

Somehow I got this programmed into myself at an early age – how I don’t know.

Back in my corporate sales days, when I would bring presales support people along on sales calls, as well as the occasional sales manager or VP, I would always debrief afterwards with my team.

No matter whether the call was a home run, or a flat out disaster, I would grab the team for a debrief (often over beers) to discuss what we did right, what we did poorly, what learned about the account and our competition, and what we could do better.

I wouldn’t allow anyone to be thin-skinned. Everything was fair game. Now I am pretty diplomatic when I need to be, or I can be blunt and to the point when the situation calls for it.

By doing this, I quickly improved my own selling and that of my team mates. The improvements were usually small, occasionally there was a big ah-ha, but the constant small improvements made me a much better salesman over time.

Now I don’t know if you do this or not. My sense is that not enough sales people do this. Probably out of a need to be in control, to be “the man”, or whatever.

Well that’s just one small and easy way that you can be constantly improving yourself.

Another way is to be doing a little bit of learning all the time. Reading this newsletter is a great start.

You should also be reading sales books. Listening to CDs and MP3s like my Persuasive Selling Skills Audio Program. And attending live sales training seminars, which you should do regardless of whether or not your company will pay for it.

You see being salesman is like being your own business. And waiting for your company to pay for you to get better is an “employee” attitude. Sales is about risk.

If you want safety and benefits go take a fixed salary job somewhere.

I learned way back in college (was it really that long ago?) that you are either moving forward or you are moving backwards.

There is no maintaining the status quo in anything worth doing or having.

You’re either getting better or you’re getting behind.

Set a higher expectation for yourself on one thing today.

And commit to getting better all the time. Even when there are setbacks, just pick up where you last were at, and go forward again.

Make the story of your life be one step back, two steps forward.

Sell with Pride,

Shameless Shamus Brown

P.S. Here’s a great place to take your mindset two, five or even fifty steps forward