Author: Jeffrey Gitomer
Publisher: FT Press
Year Published: 2006
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Jeffrey Gitomer is known as a top motivational sales author and trainer. If you’ve ever heard him speak, he’s extremely energetic and tries to make sales fun. In the Little Red Book of Sales Answers, Gitomer sticks to his fun theme, putting together what feels like a sales book for the attention-deficit with large red headlines, blue bolded lettering to draw attention, cartoons, and freebies you can access on his website.
The book, which includes “99.5 real world answers that make sense, make sales, and make money” is broken into 6 parts: personal improvement, prospecting for leads and making appointments, winning the sales battle, sales skill building, building relationships, and building your personal brand.
Gitomer starts off his book by proclaiming that sales is hard, and as much as every sales person wishes a list of everyone ready to buy from them now would be handed to them, no such list exists. In fact, he states
“The one-word meaning of sales is: Work
The two-word meaning of sales is: Work Hard
No surprise there — unless of course you’re working at Disney World, over there in Fantasyland. Wake up, Tinkerbell. There’s no magic wand. There’s no secret formula. There’s no lotion or potion that will make sales faster and easier for you — unless your potion is hard work.”
He goes on to explain that people don’t get “lucky,” they prepare for the meeting, they engage customers in the sales process, they get a commitment from the prospect that he is willing to buy, and they practice – and that’s all part of the first “real world answer” Gitomer includes.
As you read the book, you quickly learn that Gitomer has little tolerance for whiners. One of his questions is “My company won’t buy me a laptop. What should I do?” He answers with a firm
“Your success is your responsibility. So are your sales tools. Go down to the computer store and buy one yourself. You have your own money. Go out and invest it in the most important person in the world — YOU!…
How about stop whining, and start winning?”
Gitomer comes across as a no BS guy that tells it like it is. He gives out advice and sales tools freely throughout the book, but he isn’t afraid to tell you that success takes hard work – and if you aren’t willing to put in that work, you probably won’t do very well.
If you are a beginner to sales, this book is a quick, easily digestible read that walks you though the basics of making cold calls, getting appointments, asking the right questions to engage prospects, handling objections, asking for the sale, and building relationships that lead to repeat business, testimonials and referrals.
Sales trainers may find the book helpful in sparking discussion in weekly sales meetings or mentoring sessions. Each answer Gitomer provides spans between 1-3 pages, so it’s easy to read the Q&A to a group for further discussion.
The best thing about this book is that it takes your mental attitude into consideration. If you don’t like sales or the product you are selling. If you don’t like your company or your customers, then perhaps you should consider doing something else because if you don’t put your heart into your work, you will never be happy. He closes with “If you love it, it will be ever so easy for you to put your full heart into it.”