We all feel unmotivated from time to time.
When I do, it helps to pick myself up with some motivational quotes.
Maybe you and your team will find the same value in these hand-picked motivational sales quotes.
The Best Motivational Sales Quotes
These are my favorite motivational sales quotes:
1. “We herd sheep, we drive cattle, we lead people. Lead me, follow me, or get out of my way.” — George S. Patton.
A bit aggressive, but it’s a great statement on leadership.
2. “In the middle of every difficulty lies opportunity.” — Albert Einstein.
Challenges and hardships are natural. But they often offer lessons and paths forward.
3. “Learn from the mistakes of others. You can’t live long enough to make them yourself.” — Eleanor Roosevelt.
It pays to learn from other people.
4. “Either run the day or the day runs you.” — Jim Rohn.
Don’t let a bad experience set a negative tone for the whole day.
5. “Success looks a lot like failure up until the moment you break through the finish line.” — Dan Waldschmidt.
The line between success and failure isn’t as thick or certain as you might think.
6. “If you’re offered a seat on a rocket ship, don’t ask what seat! Just get on.” — Sheryl Sandberg.
Okay, maybe ask some questions. But the point is to take opportunities when you have them.
7. “Great sellers go into a meeting with multiple next-steps; this allows them to proactively respond if a plan does not unfold as planned.” — Tibor Shanto.
Less motivation and more practical advice, this quote helps salespeople be better prepared.
8. “You can’t build a reputation on what you are going to do.” — Henry Ford.
Plans are nice. But actions are even better.
9. “You must expect great things of yourself before you can do them.” — Michael Jordan.
Believe in yourself! Just don’t expect to beat MJ on the basketball court.
10. “We generate fears while we sit. We overcome them by action.” — Dr. Henry Link.
We’re at our most anxious when we’re not doing anything.
11. “Act as if what you do makes a difference. It does.” — William James.
The more you care, the harder you’ll work.
12. “What we dwell on is who we become.” — Oprah Winfrey.
We all fail from time to time. But if you beat yourself up over a failure, you’ll set yourself up for an even worse failure in the future.
13. “Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time.” — Thomas Edison.
Follow up with those cold prospects!
14. “What you focus on is what you get.” — Bob Burg.
I don’t know about you, but I’m focusing on a billion dollars right now.
15. “The way to get started is to quit talking and begin doing.” — Walt Disney.
Again, plans are good, but actions are better.
16. “There are no limits to what you can accomplish, except the limits you place on your own thinking.” — Brian Tracy.
People often set arbitrary internal limits for their own accomplishments. It’s silly if you think about it.
17. “Success is never final. Failure is never fatal. It is courage that counts.” — Winston Churchill.
Sales is an ongoing challenge. You have to treat it as such.
18. “If you are working on something that you really care about, you don’t have to be pushed. The vision pulls you.” — Steve Jobs.
That kind of defeats the purpose of motivational quotes, though, huh?
19. “Failure will never overtake me if my determination to succeed is strong enough.” — Og Mandino.
Determination and grit can overcome just about anything.
20. “Motivation will almost always beat mere talent.” —Norman Ralph Augustine.
It’s true. You may be a natural, but a sufficiently motivated contender will always have the edge.
21. “Human beings have an innate inner drive to be autonomous, self-determined, and connected to one another. And when that drive is liberated, people achieve more and live richer lives.” — Daniel Pink.
This one works great if you trust your sales reps to work independently.
22. “Accept failure as part of the process.” — Unknown.
Failure’s not the end. Usually, it’s more like the middle.
23. “A goal is a dream with a deadline.” — Napolean Hill.
Good goals have deadlines, pushing us to act.
24. “No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.” — Eleanor Roosevelt.
Your thoughts are often tightly interlinked with your feelings.
25. “You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream.” — C.S. Lewis.
Got some silver foxes on your team? Let them know.
26. “If you don’t believe in what you’re selling, neither will your prospect.” — Frank Bettger.
Rally people to believe in this product (and this company).
27. “Sales is an outcome, not a goal. It’s a function of doing numerous things right, starting from the moment you target a potential prospect until you finalize the deal.” — Jill Konrath.
Hoo boy. That’s a lot of responsibility. But this quote holds true in my experience.
28. “Approach each customer with the idea of helping him or her solve a problem or achieve a goal, not of selling a product or service.” — Brian Tracy.
Solid, straightforward advice.
29. “Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower.” — Steve Jobs.
Every sales rep should be a leader in some respects, striving to innovate.
30. “The secret of getting ahead is getting started.” — Mark Twain.
Getting started also happens to be the hardest part.
31. “You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.” — Wayne Gretzky.
(and Michael Scott).
32. “Sometimes the most influential thing we can do is listen.” — Bob Burg.
Shutting up is an invaluable sales skill.
33. “Sales success comes after you stretch yourself past your limits on a daily basis.” — Omar Periu.
“Past limits” is, by definition, an impossibility, but you get it.
34. “Once you replace negative thoughts with positive ones, you’ll start having positive results.” — Willie Nelson.
I think Willie Nelson also had another ingredient helping him.
35. “There is no magic to closing. There are no magic phrases. Closing the deal is completely dependent on the situation.” — Alice Heiman.
I’ve got some great closing tips, but every deal is unique.
36. “The successful warrior is the average man, with laser-like focus.” — Bruce Lee.
Sales reps, warriors, same diff.
37. “Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them like an artist.” — Pablo Picasso.
Art and innovation are often about knowing which rules can be bent – and which ones can be broken.
38. “Big shots are only little shots who keep shooting.” — Christopher Morley.
The metaphor gets stretched a bit here, but the premise is valuable.
39. “If you don’t give up on something you truly believe in, you will find a way.” — Roy T. Bennett.
There’s always a way forward.
40. “The road to Easy Street goes through the sewer.” — John Madden.
File this under “it’s always darkest just before dawn.”
41. “Sales enablement can’t be reactive. It has to be a full-blown strategy that’s woven into the fabric of the company.” — Roderick Jefferson.
More practical advice here. For an overview of sales enablement, click that link!
42. “It is not necessary to do extraordinary things to get extraordinary results.” — Warren Buffett.
Sometimes, it’s our mundane daily habits that eventually lead us to success.
43. “The one thing you’re putting off or dreading? That’s your brain telling you it’s the thing you need to do most and next. Get it done. Stop dreading. Do.“ — Nancy Nardin.
Don’t listen to this one if you have an overly anxious mind that dwells on irrational things.
44. “The best salespeople wonder what it would be like to be in the other person’s shoes. They know they can’t play that game unless they continually strive to train themselves in how we as human beings communicate.” — Bob Phibbs.
Empathy is an incredible tool.
45. “You just can’t beat the person who never gives up.” — Babe Ruth.
The more you work at it, the better you’ll get.
46. “I’d rather regret the things I’ve done than regret the things I haven’t done.” — Lucille Ball.
Inaction is the most regrettable offense.
47. “Whether you think you can or you think you can’t, you’re right.” — Henry Ford.
A true classic from a visionary leader.
48. “Whatever you are, be a good one.” — Abraham Lincoln.
Feel free to devise your own style or follow someone else’s – but always strive for excellence.
49. “What differentiates sellers today is their ability to bring fresh ideas.” — Jill Konrath.
You don’t need to reinvent the wheel, but you should try to come up with something new.
50. “I fear not the man who has practiced 10,000 kicks once, but I fear the man who has practiced one kick 10,000 times.” Bruce Lee.
Better to be a specialist than a generalist.
51. “The difference between a successful person and others is not a lack of strength, not a lack of knowledge, but rather a lack of will.” Vince Lombardi.
Okay, knowledge is important, but it’s still secondary to willpower.
52. “The major difference between successful and unsuccessful people is that the former look for problems to resolve, whereas the latter make every attempt to avoid them.” — Grant Cardone.
It’s called being proactive.
53. “I attribute my success to this: I never gave or took any excuse.” Florence Nightengale.
How many salespeople you know who bring up a list of excuses every time they lose a sale? It’s more valuable to take accountability.
54. “It’s not about having the right opportunities. It’s about handling the opportunities right.” — Mark Hunter.
Every situation is unique.
55. “When reps take the role of a curious student rather than an informed expert, buyers are much more inclined to engage.” — Jeff Hoffman.
Again, the power of shutting up is immeasurable.
56. “Become the person who would attract the results you seek.” — Jim Cathcart.
What type of salesperson would be able to achieve your goal? Be that guy.
57. “I never lose. I either win or learn.” Nelson Mandela.
I bet Nelson Mandela lost sometimes. But he probably learned something from each of those defeats.
58. “If you are not taking care of your customer, your competitor will.” — Bob Hooey.
Harsh truths from Bob Hooey.
59. “There is always room at the top.” — Daniel Webster.
Sales is a field where there’s truly no limit to how much you can grow.
59. “Don’t say you don’t have enough time. You have exactly the same number of hours per day that were given to Pasteur, Michelangelo, Mother Teresa, Helen Keller, Leonardo da Vinci, Thomas Jefferson, and Albert Einstein.” — H. Jackson Brown, Jr.
Comparison is the thief of joy – but this is an important reality check.
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60. “There is little success where there is little laughter.” Andrew Carnegie.
Relax and have fun sometimes. It can make you an even better salesperson. No, really.
61. “Great salespeople are relationship builders who provide value and help their customers win.” — Jeffrey Gitomer.
See? Sales is all about relationships.
62. “Change before you have to.” — Jack Welch.
Change is inevitable, but we often resist it. Get ahead of the game.
63. “I got lucky because I never gave up the search. Are you quitting too soon? Or are you willing to pursue luck with a vengeance?” Jill Konrath.
“Luck” is imaginary. Lucky people are often the ones working to get what they want.
64. “Outstanding people have one thing in common: An absolute sense of mission.” Zig Ziglar.
What are you going to achieve today?
65. “Winning isn’t everything, but wanting to win is.” — Vince Lombardi.
The importance of ambition can’t be overstated.
66. “True productivity comes from allowing yourself to make mistakes. Do so, and you’ll succeed more often than any ten perfectionists.” — Laura Stack.
Mistakes are natural. Don’t beat yourself up over them.
67. “I’m not a product of my circumstances. I am a product of my decisions.” — Stephen Covey.
Accountability allows you to keep growing.
68. “The story is the heart of the sale.” Matthew Pollard.
Salespeople tend to be great storytellers.
69. “I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain.” Frank Herbert.
A fun mantra from Dune.
70. “The harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph.” Thomas Paine.
You’ve likely felt this in at least some ways in your personal life.
71. “Sales are contingent upon the attitude of the salesman – not the attitude of the prospect.” — W. Clement Stone.
It’s all on you.
72. “I have never worked a day in my life without selling. If I believe in something, I sell it, and I sell it hard.” Estée Lauder.
Selling is everywhere, whether you realize it or not.
73. “Practice is just as valuable as a sale. The sale will make you a living; the skill will make you a fortune.” — Jim Rohn.
Refine your skillset first.
74. “High expectations are the key to everything.” — Sam Walton.
Low expectations will keep you happy. High expectations will keep you working hard.
75. “Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one’s courage.” — Anais Nin.
An abstract concept that encourages us to be brave.
76. “If you’re going through hell, keep going.” — Winston Churchill.
Maybe change direction a bit, but keep moving forward.
77. “Grit, in a word, is stamina. But it’s not just stamina in your effort. It’s also stamina in your direction, stamina in your interests. If you are working on different things but all of them very hard, you’re not really going to get anywhere. You’ll never become an expert.” — Angela Duckworth.
Again, specialization is better than generalization.
78. “Always do your best. What you plant now, you will harvest later.” — Og Mandino.
Whether you work hard or lazily rest on your laurels, you’ll reap the products of your inputs.
79. “Don’t watch the clock; do what it does. Keep going.” — Sam Levenson.
Keep finding things that allow you to make progress.
80. “Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Wishing is not enough; we must do.” — Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe.
Don’t get lost in theory. Spend time in practice.
81. “Fortune favors the bold.” — Virgil.
Boldness and aggression are invaluable.
82. “Your attitude, not your aptitude, will determine your altitude.” — Zig Ziglar.
Hard-working optimists always outperform their counterparts.
83. “Trying is winning in the moment.” — Dan Waldschmidt.
If you’re making effort, you can consider yourself a winner.
84. “Fall down seven times and stand up eight.” — Unknown/proverb.
Also attributable to Chumbawamba.
85. “If you’re not making mistakes, then you’re not doing anything.“ — John Wooden.
Be proud of your mistakes. It means you’re trying.
86. “Courage is not having the strength to go on; it is going on when you don’t have the strength.” — Teddy Roosevelt.
We all feel these moments of weakness.
87. “Everything you’ve ever wanted is on the other side of fear.” — George Addair.
You have to overcome it to move on.
88. “Excellence is not a skill. It’s an attitude.” — Ralph Marston.
Everything starts with your outlook and mentality.
89. “We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.” — Albert Einstein.
We have to go deeper.
90. “Opportunities are usually disguised as hard work, so most people don’t recognize them” — Ann Landers.
Work to find those diamonds in the rough.
91. “Dream big! There are no limitations to how good you can become or how high you can rise except the limits you put on yourself.” — Brian Tracy.
Too many people are victims of their own low self-esteem.
92. “The most difficult thing is the decision to act, the rest is merely tenacity. The fears are paper tigers. You can do anything you decide to do. You can act to change and control your life; and the procedure, the process is its own reward.” — Amelia Earhart.
Just don’t get lost.
93. “What you lack in talent can be made up with desire, hustle, and giving 110% all the time.” — Don Zimmer.
For the pedants out there, 110 percent is impossible, yes; the point is, you can’t afford to slack off.
94. “If you aren’t going all the way, why go at all?” — Joe Namath.
Low-aiming goals will only serve to hold you back.
95. “If it scares you, it might be a good thing to try.” — Seth Godin.
Breaking out of your comfort zone is almost always a good thing.
96. “Lean in, speak out, have a voice in your organization, and never use the word ‘sorry.'” — Trish Bertuzzi.
I mean, you should probably apologize on occasion. But don’t apologize for working hard and following what you believe is right.
97. “Well done is better than well said.” — Benjamin Franklin.
Your actions are much more valuable than your words.
98. “Beware of monotony; it’s the mother of all deadly sins.” — Edith Wharton.
Boredom and mediocrity can ruin you.
99. “Before LinkedIn and other social networks, in the sales world, ABC stood for Always Be Closing. Now it means Always Be Connecting.” — Jill Rowley.
Networking is often your most powerful asset.
100. “How you sell is more important than what you sell.” — Andy Paul.
It’s all in the approach.
101. “Don’t let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do.” — John R. Wooden.
Don’t waste time dwelling on your limitations when you could, instead, focus on your strengths.
102. “One of the best predictors of ultimate success … isn’t natural talent or even industry expertise, but how you explain your failures and rejections.” — Daniel H. Pink.
Do you learn from your mistakes? Or make excuses for them?
103. “Don’t be afraid to give up the good to go for the great.” — John D. Rockefeller.
Sometimes, we have to give up something comfortable and decent for something extraordinary.
104. “To build a long-term, successful enterprise, when you don’t close a sale, open a relationship.” — Patricia Fripp.
You don’t have to win the business to get something out of the exchange.
105. “Sellers who listen to buyers carefully and then give them the missing ingredients – those are the ones who stand out.” — Deb Calvert.
Listen patiently and give them what they need.
106. “It’s no longer about interrupting, pitching and closing. It is about listening, diagnosing and prescribing.” — Mark Roberge.
Some may argue that it was never about interrupting, pitching and closing.
107. “Be miserable. Or motivate yourself. Whatever has to be done, it’s always your choice.” — Wayne Dyer.
You should always feel empowered.
108. “Establishing trust is better than any sales technique.” — Mike Puglia.
Everything stems from trust.
109. “Don’t expect to be motivated every day to get out there and make things happen. You won’t be. Don’t count on motivation. Count on discipline.” — Jocko Willink.
Even with these quotes, there will be some days where you can’t find motivation. And you’ll have to get to work anyway.
110. “Great things are done by a series of small things done together.” — Vincent van Gogh.
Small, often mundane things.
111. “Leadership belongs to those who take it.” — Sheryl Sandberg.
Willpower, boldness, and assertiveness are the hallmarks of a leader.
112. “It ain’t over ’til it’s over.” — Yogi Berra.
Don’t give up until you’re forced to. Well, at least in most situations.
113. “Success seems to be connected with action. Successful people keep moving. They make mistakes but they don’t quit.” — Conrad Hilton.
Do you know someone like this in your personal life?
114. “Nothing is impossible; the word itself says ‘I’m possible!'” — Audrey Hepburn.
This one’s a bit tacky, and there are some things that are impossible. But it’s important to avoid writing off the possibility of things that only seem impossible – when in reality, they’re just unlikely.
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Jayson is a long-time columnist for Forbes, Entrepreneur, BusinessInsider, Inc.com, and various other major media publications, where he has authored over 1,000 articles since 2012, covering technology, marketing, and entrepreneurship. He keynoted the 2013 MarketingProfs University, and won the “Entrepreneur Blogger of the Year” award in 2015 from the Oxford Center for Entrepreneurs. In 2010, he founded a marketing agency that appeared on the Inc. 5000 before selling it in January of 2019, and he is now the CEO of EmailAnalytics.