Little Red Book of Selling

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By Jeffrey Gitomer


People often assume that being good at selling is for marketers and car salesmen. The truth is we are always selling. One way to think about it is by thinking about your work relationships, even if you are in the farthest position away from the sales team, you still had to sale yourself when you got hired and for whatever reason you’ve done a good enough job to not only land the job but to keep the job (or not). I have a close friend that is really good at selling himself and his company’s products and services to his customers but he doesn’t do a very good job of selling himself to his own company.


No matter what you are doing, you are sending a message. Maybe you’re quiet and withdrawn. The people around you take a message from that. Are you approachable, standoffish, happy, angry, social, gullible, and the list goes on. Understanding how people perceive your actions is important to creating good relationships and building on them. When dating you need to sell different attributes about yourself than when you’re interviewing for jobs or launching your first product as an entrepreneur.


Whether you are selling a product or trying to land a second date, the buyer must be sold on you first. Jeffrey Gitomer’s book hammers this into the reader. He helps you understand why this concept is so important and how to accomplish it by going through multiple self-development steps. They are all directly related to sales but interestingly enough they are all life skills that can apply in many areas of life. People like to buy from quality people. If you want to make more sales today, tomorrow and forever you need to become the type of person that people like to be around, and buy from. “People love to buy, they hate to be sold.”


Gitomer covers several selling strategies from setting up your voice mail, business cards and video marketing to using customer testimonials and asking the right questions. My personal favorite part of the book was the last couple chapters. “The biggest mistake salespeople make is trying to sell for the wrong reasons – their own. You see, people don’t buy for your reasons – they buy for their reasons – so find their reasons (their why) first and sell them on that.” If you can find out their why and you have become an amazing person (they’ve bought into you) then selling is easy.


I bring this up all the time and yet here is another reputable person saying it in his own way. “Love it or leave it. The more you love it the more you will sell.” You must love what you are doing and loving it includes all the preparation required, the learning, discovering, trial and error it covers all aspects of the game. Learn to love the grind for the grind is the majority of life.


The very last bit of the book includes a list of the top 10 qualities and characteristics from the top saleswoman in Cintas’ southeast region. I love numbers 2, 4 and 6.


2) Excited about the prospect of helping others. Sincerely caring.

 4) I like people and they like me. I don’t try to type people; I just try to like them.

 6) If I’m not having fun, what’s the point? I have often been described as easily amused. I think this is one of my best characteristics. I find joy in almost everything.


Jeffrey Gitomer makes countless references to the idea that you must give up some of your leisure time in order to educate yourself every day. If you love what you do, giving up wasting your time to get better at something you love will eventually come so naturally that you’ll find much more joy in the process of progression than you will by checking out and letting the TV think for your weak and tired brain. Develop your brain, develop your skills and enjoy the ride of health, wealth and happiness.

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