Holiday Season is Upon Us

Dr. Bob DeGroot

Give the gift of learning to yourself this year.

What differentiates a professional from people who take up full-time positions in sales is the understanding that they are in-charge of their own continuing education. They guard the skills they have and are in a constant search for additional knowledge, skills and strategies to enhance their ability to help their customers meet their needs.

Bob Tolbert worked for a book distributor and was a mentor of mine many years ago. He told me that there were about 2,000 books published each year just in the profession of sales. His job was to review them and determine if his company would distribute the book. He took it upon himself to ship me 2 - 4 selections each month (along with the invoice). He said that if I was going to get to the top of my profession and eventually become a sales trainer I really had to know the business from all perspectives. What's more, he'd call and quiz me on the books. Needless to say, speed reading became an absolute necessity.

Some of the challenges associated with reading a lot books on selling is that they often contradict each other. One way to keep them straight is to review an earlier e-Newsletter (see e-Newsletter archives) entitled the 12 Models of Selling. After reading this newsletter, identify which sales model (or combination) works best for you. Then focus on reading books and articles associated with those models.

Now there are at least two magazines you should be subscribing to - Selling Power and Sales and Marketing Management. These will help you keep current and energized. There is a lot going on in the professions of sales and sales management. Both magazines carry articles about both professions.

Next, there are more than a few online e-Newsletters that you might also consider. Two, and stand out. Please forward your personal favorites to me and I'll post them in our "links" section.

And what about online learning. This is an growing resource for you. Sites such as, and the just launched, are three that Sales Training International hosts. And, they are now offering "Content Mastery Certification."

An education is something that no one can take away from you. You learn, practice and execute. The more you focus your mental energies in an area, the more alert you become to opportunities to learn and to use what you learned.

So go ahead this holiday season and splurge $10 on a book on selling, subscribe to a magazine and spend some quality time advancing your ability to succeed in your chosen profession.

Happy holidays to everyone,

Dr. Bob DeGroot
Sales Training International

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