Do you have the winning characteristics of a champion? Do you
feel you are capable of being on top?
I have had a rather unique opportunity in the kitchen and bath
industry to observe and converse with a lot of champions. These are
the people who have maximized their opportunities. They are also
humble with their success.
When I teach sales skills, one of the things I ask attendees to
do is list what they believe are the characteristics of a
successful salesperson. I ask them about their last major purchase,
and what qualities the salespeople displayed that enabled them to
put their trust in those sellers. Many of the answers are obvious:
friendly, knowledgeable, follows-through, honest, professional,
organized, a good listener, a problem solver, cared about my
But, there are other types of characteristics that I see in the
winners I encounter. Winners are people who are at peace with
themselves and, in fact, like themselves. This has less to do with
their net worth than their self worth. It is less about the car
they drive and more about their focus and endless energy driving
toward a goal.
I’ve created a list that features eight characteristics that I
believe are important elements to being a winner. While this list
includes characteristics that are more personal than business, they
can relate directly to your business success.
1. Winners have solved their relationship with deity. I have met
winners from all kinds of religious beliefs, and I’ve found that
it’s not as much about what is perceived as right or wrong, but
more about one’s depth of belief and commitment. When this
relationship is in place, it provides a firm platform to focus on
the job at hand.
2. Winners strive to stay healthy. The people I know who are
enjoying selling success understand good health. They protect their
own health by being proactive, exercising and watching what they
3. Winners keep on learning. It’s always interesting to me to see
the light in the eyes of a person who is excited about learning. I
believe when you stop learning, you start dying. There are a lot of
people who figuratively speaking are dying because they have chosen
not to learn. They’re not bad people; they have just shortchanged
their potential. And, by not learning, they then shortchange their
employer. I find it interesting and disappointing that not many
people invest their time and money to improve their vocational
skills. Most people expect the learning experience to be given to
them by their employer. It’s very sad when people create their
limits by not continuing their education, and by not having an
appetite to learn.
4. Winners enjoy music! Next to a smile, I believe music is the
most common language. Sing it, play it, have it around you not only
to release stress, but to give you fulfillment through its beat and
lyrics. I don’t know why anyone wouldn’t want to feel good, and I
believe music can do just that for you.
5. Winners balance their time. We are all gifted with 24 hours per
day. That’s 86,400 seconds per day to do with as we choose. I find
it interesting that winners make time for all that is important and
still have time to do extras. Losers or rather those hopelessly
wallowing in mediocrity never have time for the necessary and, as
far as extra time, forget it. They don’t even have time for
themselves, let alone others. “I don’t have time” is often their
crutch and their lack of success. The good news isthis doesn’t have
to be you.
6. Winners have hobbies. Winners choose interests outside of work,
and this involvement enriches their lives, create relaxation and
adds social opportunities. A hobby is a “want to,” not a “have to.”
And, a hobby should be done at any level desired. Hobbies are
mentally and/or physically testing and fulfilling. It is important
to note that, with a hobby, it is not how good you are at it but
what good you get out from it. When I am asked about my golf
skills, I reply with the fact I am not embarrassed about my golf
skills. Although I don’t play golf often, I do find golf
challenging, relaxing and social, and it provides me with physical
activity. And, it is played where someone else is responsible for
mowing the grass! Enrich your life with hobbies.
7. Winners have a sense of humor. I believe humor is an automatic
by-product of a positive attitude. Winners can handle the serious
side of life yet still be able to laugh and share their enjoyment
with others. I know I catch myself doing some interesting or should
I say stupid things, and many of these activities deserve a good
laugh. I have also found that humor shared with others is not only
fun, it’s emotionally exciting and uplifting. Winners laugh at
themselves and they laugh with others and, in doing so, they never
have a reason to laugh at others.
8. Winners give of themselves to others without the expectancy of
something in return. I know that, on the surface, this doesn’t
sound like a very good business attitude. But this may be the most
important trait of all in winners, including winning kitchen and
bath salespeople. Salespeople whose total focus is self-fulfilling
generally become losers. The winners I see at the top are
contributing to their clients, their employers and their peers, and
they stand out from their competitors because of their caring and
giving ways. These winners make a difference and earn the sale.
While I’m not in a position to give a guarantee of success, if you
guide both your personal and business life with this attribute in
mind, your probability of success increases dramatically.
Where do these eight characteristics of successful people fit with
the title of the column “Closing the Sale?” I believe it is an
The next time you are around a winner, add up how that person
would measure up against these characteristics. I expect all eight
will be met at a substantial level.
The most important thing you can do for your future success is
to evaluate yourself against these eight characteristics and rate
yourself. While I believe you will be pleased, I’m sure you will
also find reasons to re-energize your vocational and life