In 1983, a traveling salesperson was transferred into a small rural town. He was met at the bus station by Ralph, the only other person working in the same town for that company. Ralph had had his bags packed for weeks, hoping that he would be transferred out. “I can’t believe they’re keeping me here even one more day, it’s a terrible place to work,” he complained, “the people are rude and skeptical and no one will let you in their house.”
Yet, in the first week, the new salesperson had put on more successful demonstrations than Ralph had in the previous two months combined! What made the difference? Did the new guy have more product knowledge than Ralph? No, in fact he had just started with the company four months earlier. Was he a harder worker? No, in fact Ralph sometimes worked extra hours late into the night. The real difference was Enthusiasm. The new guy was just excited about the product and the opportunity.
While Ralph dragged himself from house to house, putting in his time with a martyr’s attitude, the new guy went at it with an enthusiastic flair. He quickly assembled a group of excited customers who helped him spread the word about his product.
In no time, that small town was one of the most productive areas in the company. And Ralph? He got transferred out all right — straight to the unemployment line.
David Schwartz once made this profound observation: “Results come in proportion to enthusiasm applied.” That statement is just as true today as it was when he wrote it in 1959 in his timeless book, The Magic of Thinking Big. Do you have a project that is not progressing as rapidly as you would like? Are you sometimes frustrated when a really great idea only produces mediocre results? Just apply a little more enthusiasm! Soon it will become catchy and infect everyone around you. A little extra enthusiasm can mean the difference between success and failure. As the old saying goes … the only difference between try and triumph is just a little “umph!”