For people interested in a more dignified approach to sales motivation, here's a tip from supersalesman LeRoy Leale, a financial consultant and pension specialist with Shearson Lehman Brothers: "All salespeople coming off a great year have the same problem -- on December 31 your numbers are sky-high, and the next day you're back to zero. That happened to me a couple of years ago, and it was a tremendous demotivator. Somehow I had to get myself up again. So I pulled out a list of all the phone calls I'd made the prior year, and I started analyzing it. Among other things, I tried totaling up the calls -- even the ones when I had gotten no answer or a busy signal -- and dividing that number into my annual income. I got $22 per call. I remember thinking, This is pretty amazing. I'm making $22 even if nobody answers the phone. That was the hook I needed to motivate myself. So now when nothing else is going right, I say to myself, I think I'll make $100. Then I'll sit down and dial the phone five times. It works, even on those days when you pray for a busy signal."

Published on: Apr 1, 1991