By Joy Ehonwa
Salespeople are not the only ones involved in sales. The truth is that whether we are in marketing or not, each one of us has something to sell; from goods and services to our personal brand. Consequently, how well we practice and master the art of selling determines how far we go in our chosen paths, and how successful we become in life. Here are five books written to help do exactly that.
5. The One Minute Salesperson by Spencer Johnson, MD, 2002
Like the other books in the One Minute series, this 107-page book is built around the interesting and enlightening story of an unnamed man looking for a better alternative to his current business practices. He meets up with a legendary sales person about whom he has heard many stories- popularly referred to as The One Minute Salesperson. From this man, he learns basic principles and habits that boost his sales, and his life and career are changed forever.
Filled with straightforward advice on how to become a better salesperson, this quick read is a useful tool for every marketer, whether they’re just starting out, or have been in the business for a while.
4. Selling 101: What Every Successful Sales Professional Needs to Know by Zig Ziglar, 2003
At only 100 pages, ‘Selling 101’ is an easy-to-read introduction to sales technique for those who are new to selling. Essentially a collection of “daily affirmations”, this partly motivational, partly how-to book provides more of a boost for newbies than established marketers- except for those who need a refresher; they can use it as a quick review.
Featuring chapters on making the most of your time, overcoming reluctance and dealing with angry clients, this book contains more than a few good ideas. However, if the reader must get the best out of it, careful study of each section in order to draw up definite outlines on how to apply the principles contained therein, is required.
3. Stephan Schiffman’s 101 Successful Sales Strategies by Stephan Schiffman, 2005
Popularly referred to as America’s No 1 Corporate Sales Trainer, Stephan Schiffman brings his extensive experience to bear in this gem of a book. The chapters are short, most of them contained in one page and a few in no more than two pages. Yet each one will contribute immensely to making you stand out amongst your colleagues in the Sales/Marketing Department.
With clients like Motorola, AT &T, Chevron Texaco, Federal Express, Sony and The New York Times, this sales guru definitely knows what works, and packs this 275-page book chock-full of expert insider advice to help you fine tune your sales strategies and get immediate results. If you want to beat out your competition and become number one in the field, get this book today.
2. The Greatest Salesman in the World by Og Mandino, 1974
In The Greatest Salesman in the World, we join a young man named Hafid on a journey through ancient scrolls containing secrets to great salesmanship. Like many modern-day marketers, Hafid, fuelled by images of attractive commissions and exceeded targets, ventured into the world of sales. Like many young marketers also, he quickly discovered that selling was not as easy as he had thought; but thanks to the scrolls, he learnt the vital keys, and rose to heights he never dreamed possible.
Og Mandino’s powerful imagination, masterful storytelling and remarkable craftsmanship all coalesce to make this little book a wonderful and enriching experience. The Greatest Salesman in the World is a must-read for everyone who desires success in the world of business.
1. How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie, 1937
This book is not just one of the best sales books ever written, it is simply one of the best books ever written. Over 15m copies have been sold worldwide, a testament to its potential to greatly improve lives and businesses. Not many marketers realise that the happier and more organised they are in their personal lives, the better they are at their jobs.
The core principles of each section include “Fundamental Techniques in Handling People”, “Six Ways to Make People Like You”, and “Twelve Ways to Win People to Your Way of Thinking”- things every salesperson, and every business person for that matter, should know.
If you truly want to enhance your ability to win new clients and customers, increase your earning power, become a better business development executive, and most importantly, build a more fulfilling life, these books will help you get started. Happy reading!