Three sales books with a difference

20th April 2023 |   Journal Of Sales Transformation

A trio of important research-based sales books are in the pipeline this year and all are well worth checking out for different reasons.

Book 1

Grant Van Ulbrich
Grant Van Ulbrich

The first of these is Transforming Sales Management: Lead Sales Teams Through Change by Grant Van Ulbrich, set for launch on 3 May 2023 along with the “Scared-So What” personal change app, which will be free to download for individual use. The book is based on Master’s and PhD research some of which has been published in the Journal.

The book explores how sales managers can coach their teams through multiple, sometimes stressful, rollouts, and teach them to embrace and manage change from the bottom up. Van Ulbrich makes a compelling case for tackling transformation using the innovative change management model: “Scared-So What”.

The book applies the model to complex sales situations and provides useful support tools to help readers react when confronted with change. Readers will learn how to help their sales teams navigate corporate rollouts, changes to organisational design, the implementation of new technologies, rejection of sales opportunities and changing customer expectations.

Book 2

Dr Christine Eastman
Dr Christine Eastman

Scheduled for publication later this year, Transformational Leadership, The Personal Journeys of Sales Professionals is significantly different from the plethora of sales volumes that hit the bookshops every year: it features contributions from a dozen sales leaders from companies as diverse as financial services mutual Nationwide Financial, cruise line Royal Caribbean, professional services giant KPMG and technology behemoth SAP, amongst others. It brings together the sales leaders’ personal perspectives on three main areas of concern: sales technologies and methodologies; creative solutions to sales challenges; and storytelling in organizations.

All are graduates of various Master’s programmes and came together through a ground-breaking communications programme, “Finding Your Written Voice”, led by academic Christine Eastman.

“This book features the personal reflections of transformed leaders,” Eastman tells the Journal.

Book 3

The Unsold Mindset: Redefining What It Means to Sell

The third in our trio of “must-reads” is a well-received book from two academics with a practical focus, Colin Coggins and Garrett Brown, who teach “Sales Mindset for Entrepreneurs” at the University of Southern California’s Marshall School of Business. Published in February, The Unsold Mindset: Redefining What It Means to Sell asks: “What if the greatest salespeople on the planet are the opposite of who you think they are?” It starts with the premise that everyone sells, every day, and that’s why the most successful people are better than most at selling themselves, their ideas, or their products and services.

The authors address the disconnect between who we think good salespeople are and who they actually are. “In any room, they’re not the most self-confident, they’re the most self-aware. They’re not the most sociable, they’re the most socially aware. And they don’t succeed in spite of obstacles, they succeed because of obstacles,” they suggest.

Coggins and Brown sought out some of the most successful people from all walks of life, including CEOs, entrepreneurs, doctors, trial lawyers, professional athletes, agents, military leaders, artists, engineers (among others) to understand why these people are so extraordinary. They found that, as different as all these incredible people were, they all had an eerily similar approach to selling.

The Unsold Mindset reveals a counterintuitive approach not just to selling but to life. It’s a journey toward an entirely new mindset: the greatest sellers on the planet aren’t successful because of what they do, they’re successful because of what they think. Coggins explains that the greatest salespeople are not the most gregarious or the most sociable; what they are is the most socially aware. As such, they’re not extroverts who are supremely self-confident, but they are self-aware and authentic.