As a sales professional and sales performance coach, I read a lot of books and invest in some way in my own professional development every year. Recently I purchased a copy of Baseline Selling by Dave Kurlan to complement a recent HubSpot partner sales training course and coaching session.
I'm pleased to provide an unsolicited recommendation and review of this book as it offers a simple, straightforward way of managing the sales cycle based on a metaphor of the game of baseball and includes some powerful techniques that you can use straight out of the book to help level the playing field with buyers.
A common fault many sales people make is to uncover a prospect need, and then rush to the close without "covering the bases" – in this book you'll learn that to score a home-run (a sale), you have to cover all the bases and the more at-bats you make, the more sales you'll make....particularly important for those of us prone to bouts of call reluctance
What is different about Baseline Selling from a lot of other sales training books is that it is tightly coupled with a sales psychology assessment from Kurlan's Objective Management Group that comprehensively assesses the critical aspects of individual beliefs and behaviour that impact sales performance.
A truth I have learned and experienced in working with individuals and in my own selling assessment is that you have look your own weaknesses in the eye, understand them and their impact on your behaviour and results when face-face with buyers, then practice ways of overcoming them and resolve to adopt different behaviour for lasting change - and real results to occur.
Kurlan started selling door to door more than 30 years ago and he is a student of the game...of baseball and selling and his references to classic selling texts are of value.
What I found most useful apart from selling psychology assessment were the techniques immediately applicable to any selling profession including;
- "Positioning statements" - a sure fire way of getting engagement when the buyer picks up the phone
- Techniques for engaging the intellectual buyer who already has what you sell and for differentiating in a commodity sell.
- Rules for unpacking symptoms from problems and reaction and consequences and how to uncouple cause from effect.
- The "Infield Why Rule" - the practice of asking why until you get to root cause
- The "Inoffensive Close" - real gem and it works.
- The "Suicide Squeeze" for overcoming resistance to change
Well worth the $15.14 and highly recommended.