In my decades of experience in the sales industry, I’ve observed what’s known as the 90-day phenomenon. For my next Sales Secrets deep dive, I’ll explain what is it exactly, why it happens, and what you can you do about it.

Firstly, let me help you get a better idea about this whole 90-day phenomenon in sales. Let’s say you have a new rockstar salesperson in your company. Or maybe you’re the high-performing sales guy yourself.

The first 30 days, this individual is closing massive deals. After 60 days, they keep killing it. Then, before or around the 90-day mark, the salesperson doesn’t close anymore, and their production plummets.

If you have any ties to business, I’m sure you’ve seen it happen at one point or another. Maybe it wasn’t a person in sales, but an employee in some other department. Regardless, it’s one of the most common occurrences in the game.

Why does the 90-day phenomenon take place?

Now matter how frustrating the situation may be for everyone involved, it’s important to understand the why.

Most managers boil this down to one of two reasons:

  1. The salesperson got lazy.
  2. They’re too smart for their own good.

However, I think that’s a limiting way to look at it.

Sure, maybe they became lazy — but what happened to this individual that made them get to this point?

As for the ‘too smart’ argument, that’s BS. Nobody masters a trade in 90 days.

In contrast, I believe the true reason why this salesperson fell into the 90-day phenomenon is disagreement, either with what they’re selling or with management. Perhaps they got some bad advice, or came across false information.

In any case, they no longer believe in the product, service, mission, company, or leaders.

How can you address the situation?

Once you or your salesperson reaches this point, it’s time to revitalize.

How can you motivate this individual and help them remember why they were so sold on what they were selling in the first place?

Go back and list all the reasons why the product and business are so great. How are they helping people? What difference are they making in the world?

By reverse engineering the 90-day phenomenon, the person — in sales or otherwise — will be back on track in no time.

In summary, whenever in doubt, go back to the roots. You’ll always find the answer there, complete with massive motivation, purpose, and production.


  1. I sell what I would buy myself. Sometimes you find out the company isn’t delivering what you’re selling. It’s what you said, “they don’t believe anymore.” If you sell what you don’t believe, then do everybody including yourself a favor, go get a different job because life is too short for that.


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