We live in a Universe that seems to impose a law of cause and effect: results, both negative and positive, are always generated through some cause. The reason many salespeople don't get the results they seek is because they only focus on the results they want, not on the effort it takes to produce them. Shifting your focus from effects to causes will improve your results, since effort is one of the primary drivers of your results.
Why You Don't Have What You Want
The main reason that people don't have what they want has little to do with the circumstances of their birth, their lack of an Ivy League degree, or some other advantage they believe is the root cause of another person's success. Some have what seem to be certain advantages, while others have what seem to be disadvantages, both of which are randomly distributed. Over time, though, what looks like an advantage may turn out to be a disadvantage. Removing these advantages and disadvantages allows us to look at factors not subject to chance.
Let's say two people both want to save $1,000,000. The first person has favorable circumstances, successful parents, a sheepskin from Columbia, and an incredible job that could be acquired only by having the right connections. This person spends their money, only contributing to their 401K because they believe that's what they are supposed to do. The second person did not inherit any wealth, never went to college, and has a job that pays little. This person, however, saves 30% of everything they earn, ten times more (as a percentage of their income) than the person with the silver spoon.
Both people want the same result, but only one is exerting the effort to sacrifice current desires in the name of future goals. The other person is buying what they want now at the expense of securing what they want in the future. The reason you don't have what you want is that you have not paid for it, avoiding the effort, never creating a cause that would deliver your desired result.
The Consequences of Your Effort
Your results are the direct consequences of your effort. Small, inadequate efforts produce equally small and inadequate results. All things being equal, average effort produces average results, while massive effort provides for monumental results. Much of the time, though, we exert the exact effort to be comfortable.
The Catholic school I attended for grade school and middle school had an unusual grading system: instead of letter grades, students could earn an Excellent, Very Good, Good, Fair, or Poor. What’s more, every grade was modified with a number that measured your effort, with 1 being the best. Most of my grades included a 4, evidence of no effort, so my report card usually featured G4s with an occasional VG3. I never got in trouble for the letter grade, but was chastised often for not putting forth the effort. I would have been forgiven for a Poor followed by the number 1, as that would show maximum effort.
Poor results are largely the result of too little effort. Consistency is a double-edged sword, as it provides a tremendous advantage for those who are disciplined enough to exert the required effort over time, while punishing those who consistently avoiding putting forth that effort. Effort is the proof you are paying the price to have the results you want.
Why You Can't Cheat Results
Humans have always tried to “cheat” by producing the same result with less work, a behavior that has its advantages. The automobile was a way to cheat the result of going from one place to another faster and more comfortably than a horse and carriage (itself another way to cheat effort). While owning a car provides the result of moving from point A to point B, you are trading the effort that produced the money you use to pay for the car, auto insurance, fuel, and maintenance.
Those who want results without effort expend inordinate amounts of time and energy trying to do less work. Instead of paying the price for the results they want, they try to cheat nature, but the Universe doesn't seem interested in negotiating the law of cause and effect.
Your Payment Plan Only Accepts Effort
You create results on a payment plan. One day of work doesn't register as effort. Two isn't much better. The only reliable way to produce the results you need is to do the right thing, at the right time, in the right way every day. By making a payment every day, you increase the speed to results.
Success is an auditor. It will never release the results you want until you have paid in full. You can't fool success into giving you the result you want, and it will punish you for attempting any such thing by pushing your goals further and further away.