Books and Me: To Sell Is Human

Book Title: To sell is humanTo-Sell-Is-Human-The-Surpris

Author: Daniel H. Pink

“We’re all in sales Now!“ screams out Pink in the book’s back cover (incidentally this also in Pink)

As a person who believes firmly in the importance of the sales function, I would like to rewrite the above sentence as “We have been is Sales, are in Sales and will be in Sales – ALWAYS!”

As a strategy consultant, I get called upon invariably by entrepreneurs, CEO, business leaders, leaders of non-profit etc., to ask and answer the most abstract of questions relating to the enterprise. While helping them discover fresh perspective, I almost always bring in the aspect of translating strategy into actions. This then almost always brings up the question of sales.

My contention with every one of them has always been that nobody in the organization should be an exempted from selling. While most people agree on this issue, in reality the function remains segregated.  Though I have always believed, it is in Pink’s book that I now have the complete, comprehensive and evidenced filled answer.

The book tracks, the evolution of sales, the importance of a sales man and how the changing environment is turning all of us into salesmen. The building up of the case to suggest we are all actually in sales now is very interesting. The interesting mega trends identified by him namely Entrepreneurship, Elasticity and Ed-Med lead on to a greater understanding and help build conviction as to why selling should be a skill on your resume.

Part – 2 of the book talks about the three new skills: Attunement, Buoyancy and Clarity. This fresh set of ABCs is all about how to move others, influence them and make sales happen.  The qualities have been evolved, woven together and presented brilliantly. Many of the sources cited to bring strengthen the book’s case are drawn from extensive research in social sciences.  The various sources cited in the book of experiments, journal articles and books provide very interesting insights into the science of understanding human beings. The book also provides tactical tips to put these into practice.  Numerous examples and cases are provided from both B2B and B2C settings which make understanding easy.  The world’s first elevator pitch was one of those anecdotes that I shall not forget in a long time.

The author’s extensive research and writing on pitching is absolutely mind-blowing and will be useful for every entrepreneur. Overall a very different type of book on sales; an important one as we enter an era of the long tail of buyers and sellers.

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