A useful, engagingly written, and uplifting method for improving sales performance.

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A guide offers advice on cracking the code for becoming an exceptional tech salesperson.

Early on in his book, Prangley confesses that it pains him to see tech sales reps trying to improve their game and feeling lost. Drawing on his own long, personal experience, he hopes to present these forlorn colleagues with sales methods that he’s developed over the years, techniques that he’s absolutely confident will help them exceed their quotas. He first addresses what he refers to as persistent myths: that sales are all about the money, that sales are about tricking people, that superb sales figures are mostly a matter of luck. He then proceeds to lay out the basics of his method, foremost of which is “Finding Your Why”—really focusing on the essential reasons why readers are in sales in the first place. (His precepts are specifically tailored to business to business, but he insists they can be more widely applied.) Each of his chapters addresses a core idea of sales, from researching prospective customers to strengthening the teamwork instinct. Each one ends with a series of useful “action steps” that readers can implement. For example: “Actively work at building a great relationship with your manager. In particular, commit to making sure your manager never needs to chase you for accurate and timely data.” At all points in his book, Prangley very convincingly adopts the tone of a friendly older mentor, and he manages to do this without any condescension. His concentration on the personal element of sales is familiar to this type of manual but nevertheless is refreshingly human. And he organizes his material expertly; the guide is generously supplied with lists, acronyms, and bullet points to streamline the reading experience. No matter what stage of their careers, readers involved in sales will likely find plenty of value in these pages.

A useful, engagingly written, and uplifting method for improving sales performance.

Pub Date: March 3, 2022

ISBN: 978-1-5445-2745-1

Page Count: 200

Publisher: Lioncrest Publishing

Review Posted Online: April 13, 2022



Perhaps not magic but appealing nonetheless.

Want to get ahead in business? Consult a dictionary.

By Wharton School professor Berger’s account, much of the art of persuasion lies in the art of choosing the right word. Want to jump ahead of others waiting in line to use a photocopy machine, even if they’re grizzled New Yorkers? Throw a because into the equation (“Excuse me, I have five pages. May I use the Xerox machine, because I’m in a rush?”), and you’re likely to get your way. Want someone to do your copying for you? Then change your verbs to nouns: not “Can you help me?” but “Can you be a helper?” As Berger notes, there’s a subtle psychological shift at play when a person becomes not a mere instrument in helping but instead acquires an identity as a helper. It’s the little things, one supposes, and the author offers some interesting strategies that eager readers will want to try out. Instead of alienating a listener with the omniscient should, as in “You should do this,” try could instead: “Well, you could…” induces all concerned “to recognize that there might be other possibilities.” Berger’s counsel that one should use abstractions contradicts his admonition to use concrete language, and it doesn’t help matters to say that each is appropriate to a particular situation, while grammarians will wince at his suggestion that a nerve-calming exercise to “try talking to yourself in the third person (‘You can do it!’)” in fact invokes the second person. Still, there are plenty of useful insights, particularly for students of advertising and public speaking. It’s intriguing to note that appeals to God are less effective in securing a loan than a simple affirmative such as “I pay all bills…on time”), and it’s helpful to keep in mind that “the right words used at the right time can have immense power.”

Perhaps not magic but appealing nonetheless.

Pub Date: March 7, 2023

ISBN: 9780063204935

Page Count: 256

Publisher: Harper Business

Review Posted Online: March 23, 2023

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 15, 2023


Striking research showing the immense complexity of ordinary thought and revealing the identities of the gatekeepers in our...

A psychologist and Nobel Prize winner summarizes and synthesizes the recent decades of research on intuition and systematic thinking.

The author of several scholarly texts, Kahneman (Emeritus Psychology and Public Affairs/Princeton Univ.) now offers general readers not just the findings of psychological research but also a better understanding of how research questions arise and how scholars systematically frame and answer them. He begins with the distinction between System 1 and System 2 mental operations, the former referring to quick, automatic thought, the latter to more effortful, overt thinking. We rely heavily, writes, on System 1, resorting to the higher-energy System 2 only when we need or want to. Kahneman continually refers to System 2 as “lazy”: We don’t want to think rigorously about something. The author then explores the nuances of our two-system minds, showing how they perform in various situations. Psychological experiments have repeatedly revealed that our intuitions are generally wrong, that our assessments are based on biases and that our System 1 hates doubt and despises ambiguity. Kahneman largely avoids jargon; when he does use some (“heuristics,” for example), he argues that such terms really ought to join our everyday vocabulary. He reviews many fundamental concepts in psychology and statistics (regression to the mean, the narrative fallacy, the optimistic bias), showing how they relate to his overall concerns about how we think and why we make the decisions that we do. Some of the later chapters (dealing with risk-taking and statistics and probabilities) are denser than others (some readers may resent such demands on System 2!), but the passages that deal with the economic and political implications of the research are gripping.

Striking research showing the immense complexity of ordinary thought and revealing the identities of the gatekeepers in our minds.

Pub Date: Nov. 1, 2011

ISBN: 978-0-374-27563-1

Page Count: 512

Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Review Posted Online: Sept. 3, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 15, 2011

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