Some people are just plain no account at all!  They’re lazy!

I can still hear my Granny West’s voice when I think back on the days of my youth.  She was a force to be reckoned with.  Forgive the sentence structure, Dr. Hughes – but she really was such a force. 🙂

Granny lived to be in her eighties and planted her own garden for almost every single year of her life.  I loved to eat the pickled beets that she grew and canned.

Many of her “sayings” are so much a part of me that I almost feel the responsibility to give her credit in each quote.  One of my favorite quotes from Granny would be, “Well, bless their heart.”  That particular phrase sounded so melodic and as sweet as honey coming off the lips of my dear grandmother.  However, the fact was that if she said, “bless your heart” –  you knew you had done something really stupid and she wondered if “you had any sense at all.”

When Granny saw someone that would not work to the level she believed they should, she would say, “They’re no account!  They’re just plain lazy!”

In my early days in sales leadership – it was very easy for me to see a sales person with an activity level that was too low and immediately think, “They’re just plain no account!  They’re just lazy!” But eventually, I noticed something that seemed contradictory in many of these people.  In sales, their work ethic seemed to be missing –  but in their previous positions their work ethic was just fine.  So there was something wrong with this picture.

Before we get too quick to “write someone off” in sales, we would be well served to dig a little deeper.

There are at least three things that can masquerade as a lack of work ethic:

  1. Lack of Motivation
  2. Lack of Skill
  3. Fear

There will always be some who will just not make it in sales.  However, I believe that number to be quite low.  For most, I believe if we find what is masquerading as laziness we can salvage their careers and equip them to become happy and productive members of the team.

But if you do find someone who shows a lack of work combined with an unwillingness to be coached by you…

Well, bless their hearts.

Tomorrow we will delve into all three of these “masqueraders” and discuss how to identify them as well as how to coach someone through them.


Who are the people on your sales team that you believe to be “just plain lazy”?

Could it be something else?