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Heartsill Wilson - the voice of professional sales

Updated on May 16, 2014

Biography of Dr. W. Heartsill Wilson

Heartsill Wilson 1920-1994; was born William Heartsill Wilson in Marshall, TX on February 20,1920.

For many years he was a Registered Public Accountant (Auditor) in Texas. He worked on the sales staff of Chrysler Corporation.

He became one of America's top sales and human relations motivators.

Wilson would blend home-spun wisdom, a great sense of humor, and sincere fervor to communicate his sales motivation messages. Dr. Wilson died on November 24, 1994 at age 74.

Why I Created This Page Honoring Heartsill Wilson

Although Heartsill Wilson was a trainer and motivational speaker for the automotive industry, his words of advice and honest dealing ring true for any business or salesperson. He was a Sales Marketing Consultant to the Automotive Industry, the Insurance Industry, and Real Estate Brokers and Agents.

My father was given several of Dr. Wilson's records. I listened to them while growing up, and I still love to listen to them from time to time when I need a good 'get-off-your-duff' pep talk. His values and ethics have been valuable to me in my own business of pencil portraiture. I think that, besides my mother and father, Dr. Wilson's motivation is what pushed me forward in my entrepreneurship.

I have been uplifted and motivated by Heartsill Wilson's words for years, so one day I decided to look him up on the Internet. I was shocked to find only a few quotes! I felt that I needed to rectify this, and that's why this page exists.

If you are in any kind of sales, if you're a fan of Zig Ziglar or other motivational sales speakers, you will find the words of Heartsill Wilson invaluable.

So I thought I would take what information I could find from the records and share some of the motivation and information here.

Heartsill Wilson Recordings

These are my Heartsill Wilson records that my father gave me. I'd like more people to be able to hear them, and I decided that putting them on YouTube would also allow me to hear them more often myself and preserve the LP records from being worn.

How fear will cause you to lose your will to win.

Heartsill Wilson speaking in 1963. Peopleology is my favorite recording and concept from Dr. Wilson.

Heartsill Wilson speaking in 1963. Peopleology is my favorite recording and concept from Dr. Wilson.

More from the late Dr. Wilson.

This is my second favorite Heartsill Wilson recording. This is side one.

This is my second favorite Heartsill Wilson recording. This is side two.

People Are Important - Sales Wisdom of Heartsill Wilson

"One of the truly great lessons of life is that we never outgrow our need for people. People, in one form or another, become the instruments by which we improve our lives and accomplish our goals. Yet very few people ever master the art of living with others!

Peopleology proves that methods of pressure and stress only serve to accomplish our immediate goals, while concern, understanding and appreciation are the substances which long range good is achieved.

The degree to which we can make others become important, in their own eyes, largely determines the degree to which they are willing to share the burden of our success."

Find Heartsill Wilson Materials on

Heartsill Wilson on Ebay

From time to time, I've seen one or two things by or about Heartsill Wilson on Ebay. If you see it below and you want it, grab it, because they are pretty rare.

Listen for what you need to hear - not just for what you want to hear.

Heartsill Wilson's A New Day

Formerly titled 'A Salesman's Prayer,' written in 1954.

"This is the beginning of a new day.

God has given me this day to use as I will.

I can waste it--or use it for good, but what

I do today is important, because I am exchanging

a day of my life for it! When tomorrow comes,

this day will be gone forever, leaving in its

place something that I have traded for it.

I want it to be gain, and not loss; good,

and not evil, success, and not failure;

in order that I shall not regret the

price that I have paid for it."

Readers' Memories of Heartstill Wilson

"In the fall of 1973, I acted as the host-liaison for the Independent Agents of Indiana. My task was to pick up a speaker at the airport, drop him at the hotel, and have dinner with him if he wished. I was assigned to Heartsill Wilson and we did indeed have dinner.This was perhaps 6pm on a Monday night, and he asked me many questions about our business, the fears among agents, problems, etc.

He spoke at 10:00 am the following morning and he addressed every concern I'd revealed. Furthermore, he knew by that time what the GNP was for those hours, what percentage of the GNP was insurable, how many cars had been built and how many houses had been built while we were meeting, the point of which was that all those things were opportunities for insurance agents, and here we were focusing on our problems. How he did all that research at that time of night, I'll never know.

Of course, his speech was a stem-winder overall, too.

2 Years later, I had moved to Alabama and had him come speak to 400 people at our company's annual meeting. The sound system went out so he said he'd just stand on a table in the middle of the room and we'd have a good time with it. Fortunately, it got patched up and worked after a fashion, and Heartsill didn't let that bother him a bit. He got a standing ovation that night, too.

I asked him how he remembered a whole hour of motivational talk. He said he remembered about 200 hours of things to say, so the problem was not what he should say for an hour; it was which 199 hours he shouldn't use.

He treated me with courtesy and respect, and I never forgot him. More than a third of a century later, he's still crystal clear in my mind.

Thanks for the site." --Bob Cleveland

Keys To Leadership

From Heartsill Wilson

Listen for what you need to hear - not just for what you want to hear.

Be accessible. Let every man feel that you are interested in his viewpoint.

Be big enough to overlook petty jealousies, and wise enough to understand them.

When you pay only lip-service to principal, the world will soon talk about a "has-been."

Forget what you think you are - you are only what you think.

Improve Your PEOPLEOLOGY in Selling...

From: Heartsill Wilson: the Voice of Professional Salesmanship, 1963

"No one ever argues with a pleasant man!"

"Someone has said, "To sell Jim Brown what Jim Brown buys - see Jim Brown's needs through Jim Brown's eyes!" This is not as trite a statement as it might first appear on the surface.

Human nature has endowed each of us with a preeminence factor that demands that others look upon us as being important. A good salesman makes this an asset in his selling.

The ability to transplant one's self into the buyer's "image" violates all of the natural instincts of man, therefore it is only the exceptional individual that can accomplish the transition - hence exceptional salesmen are in the minority.

Our objective is to increase the minority group by assisting the majority to learn the art of motivating people - willingly."

If you'll give me a man that is lost in his work...I will give you a man that has found his future!

From: Heartsill Wilson: American's Dynamic Voice of Salesmanship, 1963

"The happiest men that I have ever met in my travels across this country are those that know what an honest day's work is - and have a deep respect for its value. In this day of keen competition and mental automation, we seem to be permeating the market with men that spend the greater part of their time in heated debate concerning work-rights, employee privileges, fringe benefits and job concessions until there is little JOY left in the job!

Over 65% of our conscious hours are devoted to our vocation and yet to many people this is the most UNHAPPY period of their existence. This atmosphere of contempt for work on the part of the present generation is now making its appearance in our College graduates, who, in far too many instances come into the market not so much interested in getting a job - as they are securing a position to manage. They are not too particular what they manage or whom they manage - their objective is to avoid any opportunity that presents itself as a WORKING CHALLENGE.

One editorial recently referred to the last decade of youth as the "Lost Generation" - young men that insisted upon a position commensurate with their education and have declined the jobs that paralleled their ability - and thus they are still without foundation for a happy, productive life. One thing is missing in our preparation of our youth for tomorrow's responsibilities, somewhere down the line we have failed to impress in their minds that there is nothing degrading about honest labor.

Hard work, healthy bodies and good minds all have a common denominator - happy people. It is no disgrace to go to work earlier than your neighbor and return home after he has retired - many of us require longer hours to earn success, but when we have paid for it with dedicated labor - it's a sweet reward indeed!"

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      5 years ago

      I hired Heartsill Wilson to speak at a rally I put together in Denver in 1973. He was powerful, persuasive, and professional. The words that he shared helped shape my own speaking and training career. His words on this page are more true today than when he first spoke them.


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