Book Review: Life’s A Pitch, What the World’s Best Sales People Can Teach Us All

This is a really cool book by Philip Delves Broughton:

What struck me about this book was that it didn’t try to position itself as some new scientific methodology for improving your stats as a salesperson. Nor did it evangelically preach someone’s view of sales and how life should be if you want to achieve your full potential. The book takes an objective observatory stance, where the author simply seeks out people who excel in the field of sales and attempts to understand what drives them, how they do what they do and why it is working for them. Personality traits are explored from a qualitative angle to give a broad sense of character and what may or may not be similar across different successful sellers.

From Moroccan souq rugs, through USA teleshopping to Japanese Life Insurance, the author takes a very broad and international sample of successful salespeople. as you might expect there are certainly some extravagant stories from this special breed of person.

Of particular interest to me were those individuals who were in the tech field, more specifically towards the final chapters where a hybrid type is identified. A hybrid type being someone who can comfortably straddle the core skills of both technical and soft skill competence. Having been in technical sales for many years, this type of individual really resonates with me as I believe it’s possible to be both technically competent as well as commercially and emotionally intelligent. Having that underlying knowledge base on the technical aspects of products can significantly boost credibility in a sales engagement and underpins Expert Selling.

This book definitely comes recommended as worth reading.

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