100 quotes to motivate your sales team

Working in sales is incredibly rewarding, but it can also be tough. There are plenty of highs and lows as people strive to hit their goals, deal with rejection and objections all while keeping their performance consistent.

There are some days when the stars align, all your leads come through and all is right with the world. However, there will be times when your prospects go quiet, maybe you lose a client, and you struggle to motivate yourself and your team.

Many people are motivated by challenging, but achievable goals, and there are plenty of those if you choose to work in sales. However, if you or your team are struggling to find the motivation to smash your targets, it's helpful to have some go-to advice in your back pocket.

These motivational quotes will help to give you a fresh perspective on difficult days and show you that other people have conquered tough times too. Read on to discover some great quotes whether you need a pick-me-up, some motivation for your team, or inspiration ideas to help you be a better sales manager. We'll also share our top tips for motivating your sales team.

100 top quotes to get your sales team motivated

From inventors to world leaders, to entrepreneurs and sports stars there is a wealth of inspiration to be gained from some of their best-loved quotes. There may even be some quotes you've never heard of, but are perfect to give you or your team that hit of motivation you need during a difficult day.

Whether you need to inspire your sales team, motivate others, build a new team or you're a new sales manager in need of ideas, we've got you covered.

Quotes to inspire your sales team


Inspiration alerts us to new ideas and opportunities. To get inspired, just remember some of these musings and ideas. It's comforting to know that challenges and struggles can create exciting new chances and that others experience the same difficulties we come across on a daily basis.

  1. "In the middle of every difficulty lies opportunity." - Albert Einstein
  2. "Either run the day or the day runs you." - Jim Rohn
  3. "If you’re offered a seat on a rocket ship, don’t ask what seat! Just get on." - Sheryl Sandberg
  4. "Do not focus on numbers. Focus on doing what you do best." - Cassey Ho
  5. "For every sale you miss because you're too enthusiastic, you will miss a hundred because you're not enthusiastic enough." - Zig Ziglar
  6. "Prospecting - find the man with the problem." - Ben Friedman
  7. "Most people think ‘selling’ is the same as ‘talking’. But the most effective salespeople know that listening is the most important part of their job." - Roy Bartell
  8. "Sales are contingent upon the attitude of the salesman, not the attitude of the prospect." - William Clement Stone
  9. "All things being equal, people will do business with, and refer business to, those people they know, like, and trust." - Bob Burg
  10. "You’re not obligated to win. You’re obligated to keep trying to do the best you can every day." - Marian Wright Edelman
  11. "All great achievements require time." - Maya Angelou
  12. "I have stood on a mountain of no’s for one yes." - B.Smith
  13. "Solve customer problems and make sure that the customer is representative of a large market and then you will have a pretty good formula." - Melanie Perkins
  14. "A goal is a dream with a deadline." - Napoleon Hill
  15. "No matter how many customers you have, each is an individual. The day you start thinking of them as this amorphous ‘collection’ and stop thinking of them as people is the day you start going out of business." - Dharmesh Shah
  16. "You must expect great things of yourself before you can do them." - Michael Jordan
  17. "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
  18. "You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take." - Wayne Gretzky
  19. "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 Phipps
  20. "I attribute my success to this: I never gave or took any excuse." - Florence Nightingale

Quotes to build motivation


There will be some days when ideas flow like a river and deals close easily. Then there are days when you need an extra boost of motivation. That's where these quotes come in handy. It's easy for your team to lose motivation when things don't work out, but by accepting that failure happens and using it as a learning moment, you can help your team to feel more motivated.

  1. "Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time." -Thomas Edison
  2. "If you don’t believe in what you’re selling, neither will your prospect." - Frank Bettger
  3. "If you are not taking care of your customer, your competitor will." - Bob Hooey
  4. "Pretend that every single person you meet has a sign around his or her neck that says, ‘Make me feel important.’ Not only will you succeed in sales, you will succeed in life." - Mary Kay Ash
  5. "I like to think of sales as the ability to gracefully persuade, not manipulate, a person or persons into a win-win situation." - Bo Bennett
  6. "A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty." - Winston Churchill
  7. "The expert in anything was once a beginner." - Helen Hayes
  8. "You don’t learn to walk by following rules. You learn by doing and falling over." - Richard Branson
  9. "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
  10. "To build a long-term, successful enterprise, when you don’t close a sale, open a relationship." - Patricia Fripp
  11. "How you sell is more important than what you sell." - Andy Paul
  12. "Before LinkedIn and other social networks, in the sales world, ABC stood for Always Be Closing. Now it means Always Be Connecting." - Jill Rowley.
  13. "Your attitude, not your aptitude, will determine your altitude." - Zig Ziglar
  14. "The bad news is time flies. The good news is you’re the pilot." - Michael Altshuler
  15. "You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream." - Malala Yousafzai
  16. "I want to be in the arena. I want to be brave with my life. And when we make the choice to dare greatly, we sign up to get our asses kicked. We can choose courage or we can choose comfort, but we can’t have both. Not at the same time." - Brene Brown
  17. "Progress is impossible without change, and those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything." - George Bernard Shaw
  18. "Hard work beats talent when talent doesn’t work hard." - Tim Notke
  19. "A river cuts through a rock not because of its power but its persistence." - Jim Watkins
  20. "Work hard in silence, let your success be your noise." - Frank Ocean

Quotes to encourage good teamwork


A great team will make coming to work all the more enjoyable. It'll also set you up for success and make it easier to achieve your goals. Most days, your team will rub along together nicely, but it's inevitable that there will be conflict along the way. Conflict can actually be a good thing on a team, as long as you all know how to handle it respectfully.

These quotes will help you to guide your team and remind you that innovation and success rarely come from a lone genius but from the collective effort and intelligence of the team around you.

  1. "If you want to make money, you have to help someone else make money." - Russell Simmons
  2. "There is no such thing as a self-made man. You will reach your goals only with the help of others." - George Shinn
  3. "If I have seen further, it is by standing on the shoulders of giants." - Isaac Newton
  4. "I don’t like that man. I must get to know him better." - Abraham Lincoln
  5. "Teamwork begins by building trust. And the only way to do that is to overcome our need for invulnerability." - Patrick Lencioni
  6. "Find a group of people who challenge and inspire you, spend a lot of time with them, and it will change your life." - Amy Poehler
  7. "None of us is as smart as all of us." - Ken Blanchard
  8. "Many ideas grow better when transplanted into another mind than the one where they sprang up." - Oliver Wendell Holmes
  9. "Great things in business are never done by one person; they’re done by a team of people." - Steve Jobs
  10. "The way a team plays as a whole determines its success. You may have the greatest bunch of individual stars in the world, but if they don’t play together, the club won’t be worth a dime." - Babe Ruth
  11. "Teamwork is the ability to work together toward a common vision. The ability to direct individual accomplishments toward organizational objectives. It is the fuel that allows common people to attain uncommon results." - Andrew Carnegie
  12. "I invite everyone to choose forgiveness rather than division, teamwork over personal ambition." - Jean Francois Cope
  13. "It takes two flints to make a fire." - Louisa May Alcott
  14. "The best teamwork comes from those who are working independently toward one goal in unison." - James Cash Penney
  15. "No one can whistle a symphony. It takes a whole orchestra to play it." - H.E. Luccock
  16. "Interdependent people combine their own effort with the efforts of others to achieve their greatest success." - Stephen Covey
  17. "Our similarities bring us to a common ground; our differences allow us to be fascinated by each other." Tom Robbins
  18. "In teamwork, silence isn’t golden. It’s deadly." - Mark Sanborn
  19. "A group becomes a team when each member is sure enough of himself and his contribution to praise the skill of the others." - Norman Hidle
  20. "To build a strong team, you must see someone else’s strength as a complement to your weakness and not a threat to your position or authority." - Christine Caine

Quotes to motivate your sales team when times are tough


When times are rough, it's useful to have some advice from well-known leaders and entrepreneurs to hand. It's also heartening to know that even the famous, successful people have experienced hard times and know how to handle them. These quotes will help you to remember that failures are great learning opportunities and that mistakes do not define who you are.

  1. "The road to Easy Street goes through the sewer." - John Madden
  2. "What we dwell on is who we become." - Oprah Winfrey
  3. "Your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning." - Bill Gates
  4. "Success is the culmination of failures, mistakes, false starts, confusion, and the determination to keep going anyway." - Nick Gleason
  5. "Remember that failure is an event, not a person. Yesterday ended last night." - Zig Ziglar
  6. “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 Pink
  7. "Failure is not the opposite of success: it’s part of success." - Arianna Huffington
  8. "I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work." - Thomas Edison
  9. "You get paid in direct proportion to the difficulty of problems that you solve." - Elon Musk
  10. "Peace is not absence of conflict, it is the ability to handle conflict by peaceful means." - Ronald Reagan
  11. "There are two ways of meeting difficulties: You alter the difficulties or you alter yourself meeting them." - Phyllis Bottome
  12. Every conflict we face in life is rich with positive and negative potential. It can be a source of inspiration, enlightenment, learning, transformation, and growth-or rage, fear, shame, entrapment, and resistance. The choice is not up to our opponents, but to us, and our willingness to face and work through them." - Kenneth Cloke and Joan Goldsmith
  13. "Difficulties are meant to rouse, not discourage. The human spirit is to grow strong by conflict." - William Ellery Channing
  14. "The aim of argument and of discussion, should not be victory, but progress." - Joseph Joubert
  15. "The art of living lies not in eliminating but in growing with troubles." - Bernard Baruch
  16. "If necessity is the mother of invention, conflict is its father." - Kenneth Kaye
  17. "It isn't that they can't see the solution. It is that they can't see the problem." - G. K. Chesterton
  18. "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself." - Franklin D. Roosevelt
  19. "I've taken my bumps and bruises, but you've got to be willing to get knocked down and pick yourself up. You can't get discouraged. You can't lose sight of what your goals are." Jermaine O'Neil
  20. "Embrace failure. Missteps and roadblocks are inevitable but are ultimately an opportunity to learn, pivot, and go after your goals with new perspective." - Jenny Fleiss

Quotes for managers


It's your responsibility as a manager to motivate your team every day. Little things will help you make your team feel motivated and appreciated, like sharing credit and building trust. These quotes contain helpful reminders, hints and tips to encourage you to be the best manager that you can be to your sales team.

  1. "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
  2. "People often say that motivation doesn’t last. Well, neither does bathing; that’s why we recommend it daily." - Zig Ziglar
  3. "A great leader takes people where they don’t necessarily want to go, but ought to be." - Rosalynn Carter
  4. "It is amazing what you can accomplish if you do not care who gets the credit." - Harry Truman
  5. "If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more, and become more, you are a leader." - John Quincy Adams
  6. "A good manager doesn't try to eliminate conflict; he tries to keep it from wasting the energies of his people. If you're the boss and your people fight you openly when they think that you are wrong - that's healthy." - Robert Townsend
  7. "Leadership is the art of giving people a platform for spreading ideas that work." - Seth Godin
  8. "The first rule of management is delegation. Don't try and do everything yourself because you can't." - Anthea Turner
  9. "Leadership and learning are indispensable to each other." - John F. Kennedy
  10. "Corporate culture matters. How management chooses to treat its people impacts everything - for better or for worse." - Simon Sinek
  11. "Management is the opportunity to help people become better people. Practised that way, it's a magnificent profession." - Clayton Christenson
  12. "Management's job is to convey leadership's message in a compelling and inspiring way. Not just in meetings, but also by example." - Jeffrey Gitomer
  13. "An employee's motivation is a direct result of the sum of interactions with his or her manager." - Bob Nelson
  14. "You need to be aware of what others are doing, applaud their efforts, acknowledge their successes and encourage them in their pursuits. When we all help one another, everybody wins." - Jim Stovall
  15. "The way management treats associates is exactly how the associates will treat the customers." - Sam Walton
  16. "The best executive is the one who has sense enough to pick good people to do what they want done, and self-restraint to keep from meddling with them while they do it." - Theodore Roosevelt
  17. "What's measured improves." - Peter F. Drucker
  18. "Hire people who are better than you are, then leave them to get on with it. Look for people who will aim for the remarkable, who will not settle for the routine." - David Ogilvy
  19. "If you pick the right people and give them the opportunity to spread their wings - and put compensation as a carrier behind it—you almost don’t have to manage them." - Jack Welch
  20. "It's not about money. It's about the people you have and how you're led." - Steve Jobs

5 top tips to motivate your sales team


To help your sales team perform at their best every day, follow these top tips to help them stay motivated.

  • Encourage autonomy. Don't be tempted to lean over someone's shoulder and micromanage them. Trust them to get the job done, and let them decide how to do it.
  • Set clear goals. Set goals that are SMART - that is specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and time-bound.
  • Talk about failure. If people are afraid of making mistakes, they'll be less likely to try new things. De-stigmatise failure by talking about mistakes made.
  • Praise in public. When you see someone displaying behaviours you want to see more of, publicly praise them. Conversely, if you need to criticise someone, do it in private.
  • Talk about purpose. Most people know what they do in their jobs, but they don't always know why they're doing it. Be clear about the purpose behind their role and how it contributes to the overall company vision.