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Sales Books: What You Should (and Should Not) Read

The personal finance book recommendation blog post made sense, based on Adulting Is Easy's other content. You may be thinking a post about sales books doesn't fit. While I agree that books about sales may not fit as easily into the other content, I got into sales for a big personal finance reason - there's money to be made in sales. It's great to play defense by watching and decreasing your expenses. It's also a good idea to play offense by maximizing your earnings.

Recommendation Scale:

  1. Don’t waste your time reading this book (Bad)

  2. Probably not worth reading (Not good)

  3. You’ll get some good takeaways (OK)

  4. This is a good book and I recommend it (Good)

  5. Make time to read this book (Amazing)

  • The Challenger Sale: These authors studied business-to-business salespeople and divided them into 5 categories based on behaviors. One – the Challenger – is overwhelmingly more successful than the others. If you’re a salesperson and you’re interested in knowing which one you are or if you’d like to hone some Challenger skills, read this book. 4

  • The Challenger Customer: This is a follow-up to The Challenger Sale. It turns out customers can be divided into seven types and two broad categories. The idea is for sellers to align with “Mobilizers” in your client organization. If you’re new to the idea of selling to a committee, you should read this book. 3

  • To Sell is Human: Daniel Pink helps you understand sales in general and acclimate to the idea that we’re all in sales. He also offers some tactical selling advice. You should read this book when you first become a professional seller. 4

  • What Great Salespeople Do: The Science of Selling Through Emotional Connection and the Power of Story: The authors teach readers that great salespeople tell great stories. They offer you tangible steps and tools in how to craft the perfect story, with the prospect as the protagonist and hero. If you’re interested in telling better sales stories, you should read this book. 3

  • Selling to Zebras: How to Close 90% of the Business You Pursue Faster, More Easily, and More Profitably: Some prospects are ideal targets for your business, and some are not. The authors call the prospects that are a great fit “zebras” and teach you how to identify the zebras in your marketplace and how to recognize the others (giraffes and rabbits). If you’re in sales and you’ve ever wondered who to spend time with and who not to, you should read this book. 3

  • The Sales Acceleration Formula: Using Data, Technology, and Inbound Selling to go from $0 to $100 Million: Mark Roberge was an engineer who became a Chief Sales Officer. He took the process-oriented thinking of the engineer and applied it to sales hiring, training, management, etc. This book is a good read if you’re in charge of building out a sales team or making changes to an existing sales-marketing relationship. 3

  • The Seller’s Challenge: How Top Sellers Master 10 Deal Killing Obstacles in B2B Sales: Williams and Seine have taken 10 selling challenges and given readers a tactical way to overcome them. If you’ve read and done a decent amount of sales training, most of this may not be new, but it might still be worth a read for the refresher. 3

  • Slow Down, Sell Faster!: Understand Your Customer's Buying Process and Maximize Your Sales: As a business-to-business professional seller, you can’t rush your buyer’s process. Davis wants to help you capitalize on that. Slow down, ask questions, and sell more to your prospects. It’s a decent book and probably good if you’re rushing through sales. 3

Have you read any of these? Do you agree with my ratings? Disagree?

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