How many books do you read a year?  Recently I took the time to read three books over a two-day period, and one of those books really grabbed me.  The Seller’s Challenge by Tom Williams and Tom Saine tackles straight on the issue of the complex sale from an account manager perspective.

Authors Williams and Saine have a unique perspective, as both of them have held very senior level sales positions and more.  Williams has been a CEO and has sat on both sides of the desk, buying and selling. Saine has a Ph.D. from Northwestern University.  This means these two people have a level of expertise few others in the industry can touch.

The elephant in the room they call out is procurement.  I see too many people dodging procurement, and as a result, they’re never successful when faced with having to sell to them.   This book frames procurement up as what they are — masters of the supply-chain — and the book details their role in business.

To help share with others the value of the book, I interviewed via video Williams and here is one of the links:

Do I recommend the book? Yes!  I recommend it for any salesperson, but in particular for account managers.  I know I have a number of procurement people who read this blog and my suggestion is to pick it up, too.  You’ll read strategies I’m sure you’ve seen, but I think you’ll also read about others you’ve never seen. No need for anyone to panic about being thrown under the bus. Williams and Saine are too classy to do that.

Summary from Williams and Saine of what you will find in the book:

The Seller’s Challenge identifies 10 of the most frequently cited deal-killing obstacles sellers encounter.   

  • Chapter 1: Selling to Multiple Buyers: Discovering Who Buys, Who Cares & What Matters
  • Chapter 2: Blocking & Tackling: Planning & Executing Buyer Centered Conversations
  • Chapter 3: Selling to Resistant Buyers: The Power of Insight Driven Conversations
  • Chapter 4: Road Blocks, Potholes & Speed Bumps: Why Sales Calls Fail
  • Chapter 5: From Gatekeeper & Blocker to Map Maker & Guide
  • Chapter 6: Better Eat Your Wheaties: Selling Against the Status Quo
  • Chapter 7: Surviving & Winning Beauty Contests (RFPs)
  • Chapter 8: Inside the Black Box: Harsh Realities of Selling to a Committee
  • Chapter 9: Frenemies: Partnering with Procurement
  • Chapter 10: The Price is Never Right. Managing Discount Demands

Each chapter is designed to be read on its own. Readers can read the entire book or just pick the chapters that interest them the most.

The Seller’s Challenge is a “tactical field manual” that taps current research, best practices and real-life examples to help sellers craft action plans that optimize productivity and drive success.  It’s all about what top performing sellers do – how they research, plan and implement activities that maximize their chances of winning.

In the book we share the harsh realities, myths, data, best practices, game changing approaches and guerrilla tactics that will elevate a seller’s prospects of winning good business.  The book includes many addendums in the form of checklists and worksheets that simplify the content.  

Definitely grab yourself a copy today!

And don’t forget that a coach can help you excel in your sales career! Invest in yourself by checking out my coaching program today!

Copyright 2018, Mark Hunter “The Sales Hunter.” Sales Motivation Blog. Mark Hunter is the author of High-Profit Prospecting: Powerful Strategies to Find the Best Leads and Drive Breakthrough Sales Results

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