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10 (+2) Sales Books To Get You Started In 2018

Top Sales Books 2018 - HackerSales

Reading gives me the possibility to learn new things at my own pace. I love reading (especially sales books) and whenever I have a chance, I either read or listen to something. However, as many of other business professionals, I have a limited amount of time available for “official” learning (with courses and such).

Reading is said to be the primary habit of successful people. Regardless of whether you believe reading will lead to success or not, I find this activity to be the best way to challenge my existing learnings, get new ideas and implement them in my daily activities.

Although I would like to read more, I realized that on average I read one book every month and a half. For this reason, looking at 2018, I put together a list of 10 top sales books I suggest everyone in sales (but not only) to consider for personal and professional growth.

1. Predictable Revenue by Aaron Ross

This is THE book you should be reading in 2018! Aaron Ross has done a great job in putting together a structured approach to be implemented in any sales organization. The book is straight to the point and summarizes clear actions to create a sales machine, all based on his experience at Salesforce.com.

Who Is This For?

VPs Sales, sales managers, but also CEOs and startup founders.

Main Learning Points? 

Cold Calling 2.0, SDR role revised and quota setting.

Why Is This A Must-Read?

The book clearly explains how to implement scalable and successful sales processes to achieve outstanding results.

2. Agile Selling by Jill Konrath

When salespeople are promoted or change companies, they need to learn new skills or adapt to new environment and processes. Changes, however, are not always easy to implement, especially at a personal level. This book gives you a plan to learn new skills quickly and absorb information in an efficient way.

Who Is This For?

Sales reps and sales managers.

Main Learning Point? 

Time management and new-skills learning.

Why Is This A Must-Read?

It gives the reader an easy way to implement the right mindset, learning strategy, and habits in busy times.

3. The Sales Enablement Playbook by Cory Bray and Hilmon Sorey

Sales enablement is becoming every day more relevant as organizations and sales activities evolve. This book provides actionable insights on how to create a sales enablement culture. by having stand-alone frameworks per chapter to implement in your daily activities.

Who Is This For?

Sales managers, VP Sales, CEOs and Startup founders.

Main Learning Points? 

Techniques and frameworks ready to implement to enable (new) sales processes within your organization.

Why Is This A Must-Read?

Sales and organizations are constantly evolving and as managers, we need to find ways to impact growth with proven techniques.

4. Smart Calling by Art Sobczak

Cold calling has been the best way to reach out new prospects for many decades but very few (if any) of us enjoy doing it due to high rejection rate. Art Sobczak explains a new technique which yields to minimum rejection, called smart calling.

Who Is This For?

Sales reps and sales managers.

Main Learning Point? 

Avoid basic mistakes when reaching out to new prospects.

Why Is This A Must-Read?

In an era where social selling is taking over and where prospects are overwhelmed with sales messages, it is important to learn new ways to differentiate yourself and your team.

5. Spin Selling by Neil Rackham

This book is an insightful research into effective sales performance resulting in what Rackham calls SPIN strategy (Situation, Problem, Implication, Need-payoff). These easy-to-follow and implement techniques will guide sales managers and reps into achieving success when selling high-value products and services.

Who Is This For?

Sales reps, sales managers, VPs Sales, and Startup founders.

Main Learning Points? 

The difference between techniques used in small-scale companies and big corporations.

Why Is This A Must-Read?

Real life examples give sales reps and managers new ways to achieve great results by forgetting the “old” way.

6. The Sales Development Playbook by Trish Bertuzzi

This book is a strategic guide to “explosive” growth. The success of any organization is directly linked to how successfully the build and acquire new pipeline. For a growth like no other, the sales development playbook is the answer.

Who Is This For?

Sales managers and executives, as well as startup founders.

Main Learning Point? 

Six elements for building new pipelines and accelerating growth with the right sales activities.

Why Is This A Must-Read?

The reader will gain strategic insights on how to align sales activities to market conditions, hire the right type of sales reps with urgency, create specialized roles for your sales team, and set achievable quotas.

7. Coaching Salespeople into Sales Champions by Keith Rosen

The success of every sales team is not the result of more training but better coaching. When managers and executives invest their time in coaching their teams, there will be better results as well as a stronger environment for everyone to perform.

Who Is This For?

Sales managers, VPs Sales, Startup Founders.

Main Learning Points? 

Coaching, observation skills, and feedback techniques to create positive behavioral changes.

Why Is This A Must-Read?

Every manager, regardless of the function, should focus on coaching. The book gives case studies and a 30-day turnaround strategy for underperformers. If you create sales champion, you create a coaching culture which will result in a high-performance team.

8. Sales Management Simplified by Mike Weinberg

The main reason why sales teams fail is not due to lack of good sales reps, but because of how these are led. Sales managers through actions and attitude shape the way reps behave and work towards their goal. The book gives a ready-to-implement strategy for managers based on real consulting activities by the author.

Who Is This For?

Sales managers, VP Sales, and Startup founders.

Main Learning Point? 

Create a winning sales culture, while fostering top performers and coaching underperformers.

Why Is This A Must-Read?

Any company success is tightly connected to its managers and the way these lead individuals. The book will help those willing to challenge their status-quo to reach greater results.

9. You Can’t Teach A Kid To Ride A Bike At Seminar by  David H. Sandler & John Hayes

I have personally attended a couple of sales training held by a Sandler’s trainer and yes, I was amazed! The techniques you learn are easy to implement and effective. In this book, you can learn the fundamental principles of the Sandler’s training.

Who Is This For?

Sales reps and sales manager.

Main Learning Point? 

Understand what really drives prospects’ behavior going through the 7-step program.

Why Is This A Must-Read?

Sandler’s training program is one of the most acclaimed worldwide. The book is a good way to get into it and understand how to work with the techniques used to achieve success.

10. Outbound Sales, No Fluff by Rex Biberston & Ryan Reisert

The book gives a step-by-step guide for sales professionals, filled with real-life and practical advice, and no BS. To fill pipelines in the right way, sales professionals can either rely on inbound or outbound activities, the book focuses on the latter.

Who Is This For?

Sales reps & Hunters.

Main Learning Point? 

Actionable advice on filling new pipelines through outbound sales activities.

Why Is This A Must-Read?

The book covers how to master outbound activities to fill your team pipelines with new qualified leads. It gives every sales rep a ready-to-implement framework for success.

 

These are my top 10 sales books for 2018 that should be in your library. Should you be a little bit faster than me in reading, here below a couple of extra “classics” (but still relevant) in case you have missed them.

 

11. Influence: The Psychology Of Persuasion by R. Cialdini

This is a classic book on the psychology behind what drives people to say “yes”. It takes into consideration 6 basic (but valuable) persuasion principles and how to use them. Cialdini goes also a step further and explains how these are used in real life.

Who Is This For?

Everyone! If you are in sales or not, you should read this. If you are in sales though, this will give you an advantage on how to learn to “manipulate” people to say yes to your requests. It is strongly recommended for salespeople and managers.

Main Learning Point? 

The psychology of persuasion applied to everyday life.

Why Is This A Must-Read?

Simple, to-the-point and actionable. It will give you a good basic understanding of the human psychology. Worth every minute of reading.

12. How To Win Friends And Influence People by Dale Carnegie

This is another classic that is not relevant only for people involved in sales activities. It is a real classic, as it was originally published in 1936 and sold 30 Million copies across the world. The book is rather an easy read with anecdotes and insights that can help you be successful with people around you.

Who Is This For?

This book is beyond any doubts relevant to anyone interacting with people. So yes, you guessed it right, it is for everyone, especially if your job is selling.

Main Learning Point? 

There are 6 main learning points for the reader, all aimed at improving your life with others, by making them like you more, accept your way of thinking and become a great leader among others.

Why Is This A Must-Read?

It gives the reader insights on important general topics, aiming at improving life and work environment, that can, however, be used in every day’s sales activities.

 

These books will certainly boost your productivity and challenge your current state of mind. Learning is about adapting and improving on existing skills as well as acquiring new techniques to achieve success.

Do you have any other book suggestions I might have missed? Did you read any of these books and want to add something? Leave a comment in the section below.