Traditionally, Memorial Day weekend is the unofficial start of summer. As such, I thought I would give you some recommendations this week for what to read.
“What kinds of books should I be reading?” is a question I hear quite often. My answer typically takes people by surprise because very few of my recommended reads are sales books or even business books. See the full list here. The vast majority of them are related to human nature or communication or relationships. In fact, I don’t think I even have one book on how to sell I can recommend if I wanted to!
The obvious place to start when going over a list is How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie. As I’ve said many times, this is the best book on sales ever written and it has nothing to do with sales.
That was the first book that truly changed my life. My mom gave it to me when I was 14 years old and it taught me the valuable lesson of engaging people in conversation rather than spewing out information regarding my favorite subject: me!
Let’s just consider this book a “given” and move on.
The second book that profoundly changed my life is the first one that I want to talk to about this week: Essentialism by Greg McKeown.
These five words at the bottom of the cover summarize what this book is about:
“The Disciplined Pursuit of Less.”
I apply the author’s lessons in a Sales Vault on-demand course called Applying Pareto: Work Less, Sell More, as well as in my live workshop series on Time Management. You may know Pareto’s Principal, also known as the 80/20 rule: 80% of your business comes from 20% of your customers. Essentialism taught me to think of the “20” as your most profitable selling activities and then focus 100% of my selling time there.
If you are busy but not productive, this book is for you.
If you are chasing too many small orders, this book is for you.
If you want to sell more in less time, this book is for you.
So, this is where we start. These two books in particular were life-changers for me. I can’t think of a third that had as much impact that wasn’t written by Dr. Suess, but I’ll give it some thought. All this week I will share additional summer reading recommendations for you.