Consider This

Robert Stevenson’s Thoughts on the Pursuit of Excellence

Why Most Salespeople Fail

August 5, 2018

by Robert Stevenson

I am preparing to present a program to the Florida Realtors Association. While doing research on their industry, I ran across two very disturbing statistics: 75% of Realtors fail in their first year and a total of 87% fail in their first 5 years. Wow! That is just shocking. SO, I continued on in my research to find out why do only 13% survive?

One of the leading sales authorities in Real Estate sales gave several reasons why they fail, many of them had to do with one three-letter word; “NOT”:

All of these “NOTS” apply to any sales position, regardless of industry. The first reason will affect the other nine; Commitment is everything. You need to be bound and determined, pledging your full effort, devoting yourself to being successful. When you are committed everything else falls into place, BUT only if you have the right things to learn.

Years ago, I had a company hire me to write a sales training manual for their company. My job was to sit down with their star sales people and pull every trick, practice, procedure, technique, and script out of their heads and put it to paper. What do they say? How do they say it? When do they say it? What are the answers to the top 20 objections? How do they plan their day? What questions should they be asking? How can they develop rapport with a customer?

We assumed the new salespeople knew nothing, and our job was to SHOW THEM HOW and then make sure they were prepared before they ever spoke to a prospective client. So, Preparation is the next key to success. A NAVY Seal is considered the Best-of-the-BEST in the world; an elite soldier who is ready at a moments’ notice, to put themselves in harms way to protect our nation. Only 12 out of 100 soldiers who are accepted into their 1-year, 4-month, 2-week training program make it through. All 100 soldiers who were accepted into the training were considered excellent soldiers, but only 12% of them make it to the end; their preparation tactics are extensive with months and months of practice.

What I see happening in a lot of companies is they are NOT PREPARING their sales people with the right tools. They are allowing them to ‘Wing-It” in the market place. In my opinion, NO salesperson should be allowed to work with a client until they have mastered their sales scripts, learned how to answer at least the top 20 objections and know exactly how to plan their day, every day. You can destroy any salesperson’s commitment if they aren’t trained properly. Navy Seals are trained to handle situations … and so should salespeople. No matter what a client says, they should be ready to handle it, if they are properly trained.

For salespeople out there, who are not getting the sales training you need, go to YouTube or Amazon. There are hours and hours of video and countless good books with excellent training tips ready and waiting for you to learn from. Great salespeople are always perfecting their craft and the only way to do that is study. Sell Wisdom, Knowledge, Service, Integrity, Understanding and Concern rather than Product, Price, Sizzle and Hype. Be proud you are in sales because without you the wheels of industry would come to a grinding halt; NOTHING HAPPENS, UNTIL SOMETHING IS SOLD.

"Your only true security in life
is your ability to perform."

About the Author

Robert Stevenson is an expert at building a high-performance business culture, improving efficiency, and accelerating growth. He is one of the most widely sought-after speakers in the world today, as well as a best-selling author. He has owned five companies, sold internationally in over 20 countries. Robert has spoken to over 2,500 companies throughout the world and his research in the area of corporate and entrepreneurial success is extensive. Over 2 million people have benefitted from his powerful, practical, and thought-provoking programs. He is a true master at blending facts, inspiration, conviction, and humor into all his programs.

Companies like FedEx, Prudential, Lockheed Martin, Anheuser-Busch, Chevron, American Express, and Berkshire Hathaway continue to rely on him for a fresh, unique perspective on businesses’ most crucial issues. To learn more about Robert and what he can do for your team visit his website at

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