Choosing Determination - (3rd in the Choosing Series)

While training a group of experienced sales people, I posed a question.  "How much do you want to earn this year?"  I thought this was a direct question.  Simple and to the point.  I was amazed at the answers (which turned into stories) from these seasoned veterans.  Some complained about higher taxes.  Others were already adjusting their goals (downward of course) because they weren't on track.  But, they all had one thing in common.  It was someone else's fault that they weren't going to make it.


When I asked them for a specific amount, most were able to give it to me.  Then I asked them if they were going to make it.  The majority said, probably not.  Then the hard question.  Why not?  Here are the most commong answers:


  • No financing availabe for the majority of customers.
  • Bad advertising from the (insert answer here).
  • Too much money in the used cars.
  • Not enough money put into trades.
  • No traffic.
  • Wrong inventory.

I could go on, but you get the idea.  There was one "problem" that was never mentioned.  That was the fact that these "pros" had never held themselves accountable for making the money they said they wanted.  The key word is "wanted."  When things we "want" don't seem to work out, often we rationalize (tell ourselves rational lies) why we don't have it.  And more often than not, it's someone or something else that kept us from it.


But, what if we made a minor change in the question  A change of just one word.  How much more powerful and determined do we become?   If you are willing to accept the challenge, the results will amaze you.  Instead of asking yourself, "What do I want to earn?", change the question to, "What do I "HAVE" to earn?"  The change creates a different focus.  If we accept that we have to do something, our determination kicks in.


When we allow ourselves the opportunity to really determine our own income, success, or even our destiny, with determination, amazing things result.  The excuses and outside influences stop.  Our creativity kicks into high gear and our mind finds solutions rather than excuses.  We work at overcoming obstacles rather than finding ways to avoid them.  And we achieve rather than make excuses.  If you could see yourself doing this, how would you feel?


As with the other installments you've read, the decision is on you.  You can do nothing (which is a choice) or you can choose determination to push you to your full potential.  Simply changing a word in a question can put you on the right track.  But, even if you're on the right track, if you don't get moving, you will be run over by the train.


The choice is yours.


John Fuhrman is the Senior National Trainer for Carolina Automotive Resource Services, a unit of The Dealer Resource Group.  His ten books have reached 1.5 million readers and he has trained sales professionals around the world.  Currently, he is training new sales people for dealers through his cutting edge programs.  Learn more at and see the previous "Choosing" series and other articles.  (c)2011 by John Fuhrman - Permission to reprint this post in its entirety, including contact information, is hereby granted.

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Comment by John Fuhrman on May 26, 2011 at 2:15pm



Thanks again for the kind words.  You're exactly right.  That's the reason we train the way we do.  Rather than just looking for numbers to graduate for a fee, we have the dealer choose the candidates that we'll train.  We help them look for the real career seekers who are looking for success because they have to and that way we develop stronger candidates who stay with the dealer for longer periods.

Comment by Marsh Buice on May 26, 2011 at 1:02pm
John, great post once again; it was to the point. We will do what we have to do; if you have to walk a tightrope in between two buildings to rescue your child- you have to do it. It really is life or death in our business. What you have to do guarantees success; what you want to do only wishes for it.

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