My 2020 book reviews and recommendations for my Scale Your Sales family of followers. Some but not all have been guest of Scale Your Sales podcast. Although my favourite book of 2020 is Becoming by Michelle Obama, the reason why these made it to my list is that I have learnt something new and I wanted to share these lessons with you. I have read many books in lockdown, here is part one of two, I hope they help you develop your skills and mindset as they have me.
So much has changed in the world, and those closest to the end-user have had to adapt quickly. B2B sellers have further to travel than buyers who directly link to their customers. The author has provided a framework and five dimensions required to successfully adapt to the modern environment: Agile, Entrepreneurial, Holistic, Social, and Ambassador. I love that Amy Franko shares her own experiences and how she has had to adapt not only to becoming an entrepreneur but also as a modern seller. There are many case studies examples and actionable steps you can take to develop as a modern seller. It is not easy navigating how a traditions industry can and must change to ensure continued relevance, some will, and others will hang on to the past. The Modern Seller will help you to sell more and increase your impact in the new sales economy.
I enjoyed the references to other sales methodologies throughout the book. It was a good reminder of the landscape of research and theories. These models were excellent support to the new skill of Partnering Intelligence PQ. I wanted to read this book because in the Scale Your Sales Framework creating relationships and moving into partnerships is a key outcome of the programme. The author uses an adapted VALUE framework to explain the modern selling approach practically: Validate, Align, Leverage, Underpin and Evolve. Then practically demonstrates how VALUE works with each of the methodologies. Selling Through Partnering Skills is undoubtedly a well-researched book. If you are looking to modernise your sales practice as you should, then you will not regret reading this book.
It was a pleasure interviewing Colleen Stanley for the Scale Your Sales podcast series. Colleen Stanley is an expert on emotional intelligence and sales leadership and author of Emotional Intelligence for Sales Success. Colleen published Emotional Intelligence for Sales Leadership in July 2020.
I love reading Emotional Intelligence for Sales Success, published in 2018. The author gives many real-life and practical examples of how you can apply Emotional Intelligence and how it works to benefit both parties. A lot is said about empathy is a critical skill in the global pandemic world. However, I am not sure you can be empathetic without first practising the skill of Emotional Intelligence is sustainable. Colleen Stanley explains how EI is about self-awareness and self-management. The author gives many scenarios and the action steps to create better questioning and listening, to become relatable and trusted the base-line for all good sellers. In a time when empathy is critical, this book shows you how to practice and apply it.
You may have the best solution for the customer; however, there are so many more hurdles to balance and mastering the conversation is one of them. If you do not know how to conduct the sales conversation in a humanistic Emotional Intelligence way, more now than ever, this can cost you are the sale. Emotional Intelligence for Sales Success is your resource and guide.
Buyers are overwhelmed with the amount of information coming at them. If you want a chance of getting noticed, you must differentiate through your selling approach says, Lee Salz. The author shows you how to disrupt the buying process through sales differentiation. The book helps you identify your set of compelling differentiators and why it is essential to align this with the decision-makers you want to influence and how to communicate your difference which distinguishes you from the rest. I loved it when the author said, ‘sales is not about being unique but rather being different relative to other buyer options’. Another great one is ‘How you sell, not what you sell, differentiate you’. You will not regret reading this book.
The author talks about the difference between a sales rep, and a sales professional is knowing yourself, having done self-reflection and becoming self-aware. Larry Levine shares his lessons learned how he consistently hit sales target and that showing his true self and doing the best for his customers was the winning factor. I love the author honesty, demonstrating the sales skill of how an authentic sales professional operates. The world has changed that servant-led sales leadership is the only way to navigate this new world successfully. This book is packed full of practical steps to do away with the ’empty suit’ ‘commission-breath’ that the industry is known for and replace it with selling from the heart.
A fantastic book that helped me understand the way my mind works and why I sometimes find myself struggling to control my brain. The book also allows you to understand and empathise with how others might react and therefore, not to take it personally – it is their monkey brain at work. This book is easy to read and most enjoyable in understanding why you or those around you do not always make the best decisions. I can thoroughly recommend reading this!
The diversity that the author refers to in this book is not as simple as gender or ethnicity, but age or just having a different experience can add a new and relevant thought perspective. It is what the author calls cognitive diversity, i.e., diversity of the way you view a problem. A pre-existing knowledge of the problem may in fact be limiting factor to see outside of the problem such that someone with no experience is likely to view the problem differently and apply different thought processes to solve the problem. In the book, Matthew Syed gives examples where a woman and a Muslim man provided missing insights that aided the solutions of complicated or challenging tasks. Because they were able to see things that the white middle-class men traditionally in this role could not see. I loved the CIA example, and there are many others which helped to give the book grounding in an uncommon sense. As a Black British woman that campaigns on diversity and inclusion, Rebel Ideas has challenged by views of diversity for the better.
Let me know if you have read any on my list and make sure you connect with the authors.