Ever watch a professional golfer hit a ball? Looks easy. I mean, what can be so hard about that? But you quickly find out when you try to hit one yourself.

Having a genuine love for people and being a good talker are excellent attributes to have when it comes to entering the sales profession. But that's just the start. Many folks share those attributes but fail miserably at selling.

Build Skills In my opinion there's no more enjoyable profession than that of a salesperson. But don't think for a second that it's not a skilled position.

I once had a guy working for me who sold two or three jobs every day. Co-workers thought he was a poor time-manager, turned in sloppy paperwork, etc. Maybe they were right. But when he left, we couldn't replace his production with five salespeople. He made it look easy because he was so good.

Being good at sales takes a lot of practice. This is what separates most professional salespeople from the wannabes or the “just making a living” folks. Pros ask themselves what could go wrong, then prepare accordingly. They go on every appointment as if it's the only appointment they're ever going to have. They treat the prospect as if nothing else could possibly interest them but that prospect. Regardless of what the house looks like, they don't prejudge the people who live in it.

Attitude Wins If you always consider it a true honor to have been invited into your prospect's home, and you work to give them the best product and service you can, you should enjoy a successful career. When you find yourself being critical of the appointment you're going on before you get there, you're in trouble. No matter how good business is, work it like you're flat broke.

In my hometown phone book there are 176 companies listed under home improvement. A successful salesperson never forgets that a prospect can call 175 other guys. —Phil Rea has conducted more than 13,200 in-home sales calls and trained more than 1,750 salespeople. He shares his sales strategies each month with salespeople across the country through his MasterMind Program. For details, call 866.441.7445.