Classic Sales Books for Anyone

These books recommended below are only on selling knowledge and specifically selling related. There are many more books out there that salespeople could read on marketing, thinking like a CEO, managing inter-personal conflict, leadership, etc. But, we chose to give you a collection of suggestions containing the most highly read selling books of all time.

  1. 10 Secrets of Time Management for Salespeople: Gain the Competitive Edge and Make Every Second Count by Dave Kahle The typical salesperson today is overwhelmed, trapped in a chaotic, pressure-filled environment with too much to do and not enough time to do it. Salespeople need help! This book provides it. Dave Kahle contends that smart time management is not about cramming more activity into each hour; but about achieving greater results in that hour. The content has been honed in hundreds of seminars and refined by the perceptions and experiences of thousands of salespeople. 10 Secrets of Time Management for Salespeople provides powerful, practical insights and ideas that really work, including hundreds of specific, practical, effective time management tips from dozens of salespeople who are on the "front lines" every day.

  2. Sales Management Simplified by Mike Weinberg Why do sales organizations fall short? Every day, expert consultants like Mike Weinberg are called on by companies large and small to find the answer-and it's one that may surprise you. Typically, the issue lies not with the sales team-but with how it is being led. Through their attitude and actions, senior executives and sales managers unknowingly undermine performance. In Sales Management. Simplified. Weinberg tells it straight, calling out the problems plaguing sales forces and the costly mistakes made by even the best well intentioned sales managers. The good news: with the right guidance, results can be transformed. Blending blunt, practical advice with funny stories from the field, this book helps you be successful in your management role.

  3. 10 Steps to Successful Sales by Brian Lambert An essential activity for the survival of any organization, sales drives every business interaction from initial contact to closing the deal. Drawing upon extensive resources the kind of success entry-level salespeople and other business professionals apply to create long-lasting client relationships, attain trusted business adviser status, and drive successful top-line revenue results. Learn the 10-steps of all successful salespeople from award-winning, top-performing, sales professionals in this book. You will discover the keys to developing a successful sales mindset, becoming a trusted adviser, managing the sales process, focusing on the right activities, maintaining momentum, and building personal trust and credibility with your clients.

  4. The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R. Covey This book was (and still is) a ground-breaker when it was first published in 1990. Today, it continues it's run as a business bestseller with more than 20 million copies sold. Stephen Covey, an internationally respected leadership authority, realizes that true success encompasses a balance of personal and professional effectiveness, so this book is a manual for performing better in both arenas. His anecdotes are as frequently from family situations as from business challenges.

  5. The 12 Cliches of Selling (and Why They Work) By Barry J. Farber Good book on why the ole tried and true things you heard from the “seasoned sales pro” might just work after all.

  6. You Can't Teach a Kid to Ride a Bike at a Seminar : The Sandler Sales Institute's 7-Step System for Successful Selling by David H Sandler The most provocative book I have read on selling. This is a “straight-to-the-point” type of sales methodology. Great for putting you in the proper mindset and really thinking about things from your position. Sandler was one of the first to recommend “qualify or disqualify and then move on!.” Most sales books focus only on a sales process or skills. Sandler focuses on both plus attitude and behavior often ignored by others.

  7. Buyer-Approved Selling: Sales Strategies From The Buyer's Side If The Desk by Michael Schell Schell interviews 228 professional buyer’s and focuses almost entirely on the sales process from the buyer’s perspective. Great read no matter how long you have been in sales or who you call on.

  8. Integrity Selling and Integrity Selling for the 21st Century: How to Sell how People Buy by Ron Willingham If you’ve tried manipulative, self-focused selling techniques that demean you and your customer, if you’ve ever wondered if selling could be more than just talking people into buying, then Integrity Selling for the 21st Century is the book for you. Its concept is simple: Only by getting to know your customers and their needs — and believing that you can meet those needs — will you enjoy relationships with customers built on trust. And only then, when you bring more value to your customers than you receive in payment, will you begin to reap the rewards of high sales.

  9. The New Strategic Selling: The Unique Sales System Proven Successful by the World's Best Companies, Revised and Updated for the 21st Century by Stephen E. Heiman, Diane Sanchez Great book from a strategic selling perspective (not tactical). If you are involved in complex sales with multiple decision makers and influencers get this book. It will help you navigate your way through the organization.

  10. How To Win Friends And Influence People by Dale Carnegie This is the bible of building relationship! The classic book on getting along with virtually anyone. In sales relationships are everything and if you have not read this book go buy it now!

  11. Consultative Selling: The Hanan Formula for High-Margin Sales at High Levels by MacK Hanan This is a classic must have and in every top producers library! The focus is on how to become a consultant to the executives of your targeted companies. This isn’t lip service he really shows you how to do it!

  12. Selling To VITO (The Very Important Top Officer) by Anthony Parinello This book is full of ideas on how to reach executive buyers. This works if you are willing to do what he says. It will take some experimenting, observation and fine tuning but it will pay off.

  13. SPIN Selling by Neil Rackham This is the definitive work on how to ask questions. Very question focused. What makes this different is the amount of research it is based upon. This is a very popular system and it works.

  14. The Sales Bible and the Little Red Book of Selling By Jeffrey Gitomer Gitomer provides motivational advice and practical techniques for initiating, maintaining, and closing a sales presentation. Written in a breezy manner with short, easy-to-remember suggestions, these books are popular with people just getting started in this field or those needing an inspirational pep talk.

  15. Let’s Get Real, or Let’s Not Play By Mahan Khalsa This book teaches you to become totally client-focused, break down the barriers of dysfunctional business development, and find rewarding, productive business relationships. With honesty, clarity, and authenticity, the book cuts through the nonsense and focuses on getting results and helping clients succeed.

  16. Selling 101 By Zig Ziglar Short, compact and concise format is the basics of how to persuade more people more effectively, more ethically, and more often. Ziglar draws from his fundamental selling experiences and shows that while the fundamentals of selling may remain constant, sales people must continue learning, living, and looking. His tips will not only keep your clients happy and add to your income, but will also teach you ideas and principles that will, most importantly, add to the quality of your life.

  17. How to Master the Art of Selling by Tom Hopkins The book that launched over 3,000,000 real-estate and selling careers worldwide! No longer a Ill-kept secret, Tom’s mega-hit book is placed within arm’s reach on every top producer’s desk. It’s considered the world’s best reference guide and has been used for more than 17 years in every sales profession. Even if you’ve been selling for years, you’ll find page after page of valuable information guaranteed to help you serve more clients while boosting your bank account.

  18. Cracking the Networking CODE: Four Steps to Priceless Business Relationships by Dean Lindsay Networking was one area that you have got to do Ill. This book addresses how to get comfortable meeting new people and building on the meeting. The CODE in this book broke down the steps to successful networking and makes it much less intimidating.

  19. Positioning: The Battle for Your Mind by Al Ries, Jack Trout This is the definitive book on positioning, a concept developed by the authors. This talks about how to deal with the problems of communicating in an over communicated society. Witty and fast-paced, this book spells out how to position a leader so that it gets into the mind and stays there, position a follower in a way that finds a 'hole' not occupied by the leader, and avoid the pitfalls of letting a second product ride on the coattails of an established one. Revised to reflect significant developments in the five years since its original publication, Positioning reveals the fascinating case histories and anecdotes behind the campaigns of many stunning successes and failures in the world of advertising.

  20. Selling to Big Companies by Jill Konrath Friendly, fresh, filled with insights. Guaranteed to rev up the performance of anyone selling in the business-to-business marketplace. Penetrating large accounts has never been tougher. The challenge of finding decision-maker’s names and breaking through voice mail is huge.

  21. Discover your Sales Strengths:How the World's Greatest Salespeople Develop Winning Careers by Benson Smith, Tony Rutigliano Unlike many how-to-sell books written by motivational gurus and successful salespeople, Smith and Rutigliano's work is backed up by facts and figures gleaned from 40 years of Gallup research. The authors, both Gallup consultants, dissect stereotypes and debunk popular "myths" about selling to determine that there is no one formula for success, and that training, knowledge and experience cannot make a great salesperson. Instead, they find, great salesmanship stems from exploiting individual talents. Top salespeople succeed by figuring out what they do best and then finding a way and a place to do it.

  22. Ultimate Selling Power: How to Create and Enjoy a Multi-Million Dollar Sales Career by Donald J. Moine, Ken, Ph.D. Lloyd Ultimate Selling Power reveals how average salespeople in a variety of industries have created multi-million dollar careers using many powerful newly-developed sales and marketing techniques. It is a practical, step-by-step guide showing what the best, most successful salespeople in the world are doing to attract an almost unlimited number of customers and clients and to close a record-breaking number of sales.

  23. Maximum Achievement: Strategies And Skills That Will Unlock Your Hidden Powers To Succeed By Brian Tracy Brian Tracy has been one of my success mentors for years. His wisdom is clear and eloquent - but more than that it is right on! Even before you finish reading Maximum Achievement for the first time, you will be a changed person - it's that incredible. Brian Tracy covers all of the proactive bases: smart thinking, system thinking, futuristic thinking, and positive thinking. Many of his ideas are found in SUCCESS BOUND, another book built on learning how to be responsible and live proactively. The laws of success in this book will bring you success.

  24. Goals: How to Get Everything You Want-Faster Than You Ever Thought Possible By Brian Tracy Though goal-setting is often over intellectualized, achievement expert Brian Tracy makes the process come to life as an essential ingredient for any type of personal development. He's been refining these ideas for 20 years, and no important insight is overlooked. Tracy's extraordinary thinking is always expressed in practical action steps.

  25. Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill Napolean Hill was a very successful individual. When Hill met with Andrew Carnegie, he was offered only a place to stay and no salary. Here was Hill with pennies in his pockets sitting in front of the richest man in the world at that time who offered Hill no financial remuneration. Carnegie felt that if Hill Ire to write a book about how to create wealth then Hill would have to become wealthy himself and he did. Think & Grow Rich is a classic that should be read by everyone, it's timeless advice works in any type of market. Over the last 30 years or so there have been many successful people from various walks of life who attribute Think & Grow Rich to helping them reach new limits in success.

  26. Getting to Yes: Negotiating Agreement Without Giving In by Roger Fisher, William L. Ury Salespeople have been constantly negotiating in our careers, whether it's convincing the kids to do their homework or settling million-dollar lawsuits. For those who need help winning these battles, Roger Fisher has developed a simple and straightforward five-step system for how to behave in negotiations.

  27. How to Connect in Business in 90 Seconds or Less by Nicholas Boothman This book is not about a new business theory; it's about how you can become more successful in business by learning to connect with your customers, colleagues, bosses, employees, and even total strangers in ninety seconds or less. Armed with simple tools that include eye contact, attitude, body movements, and voice techniques, the average person can become a more successful communicator. Boothman is a vibrant writer with a fine wit that maintains the reader’s attention by way of effective person-to-person scenarios that correspond to average daily encounters.

  28. Solution Selling: Creating Buyers in Difficult Selling Markets by Michael Bosworth A resource for sales managers in large account, corporate sales with specific advice on assigning leads, managing the sales process, and controlling costs. Effective techniques for prospecting, overcoming objections, and creating value are also covered. A solid book.

About Growth Matters

Growth Matters is a international business founded in 2011. This consulting and services organization is focused on the development and practice of sales management and sales enablement, our team of world-renowned experts spans the globe enabling businesses to improve sales conversations through services and solutions aligned to sales strategy.   Our Americas operation is headquartered in Charlotte, NC (USA). With dedicated offices in South Africa (EMEA), and Sydney (APAC), we regularly facilitate senior-level workshops in 17+ cities in countries. For more information on equipping sales managers, and aligning to sales leadership, contact the Growth Matters team at

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