“Integrity Selling for the 21st Century” by Ron Willingham

Recommended to me by: Bob Poole

A highly structured analysis of how to sell with integrity. The sales process is divided into Approach, Interview, Demonstration, Validation, Negotiation, and Close, creatively abbreviated “AID, Inc.”

Selling skillls are broken down into goal clarity, achievement drive, emotional intelligence, and social skills.

Building relationships, listening, and caring are presented as the key to gaining people’s trust and business. Also, entering interactions with positive expectations encourages people to mirror the positive behavior.

Matching people’s behavior styles is also important to gaining their trust. People are divided into four categories:

  • Talkers (social)
  • Doers (acheivers)
  • Supporters (even-tempered)
  • Controllers (logical)

This was my main stumbling block in the book, since I didn’t strongly identify with the descriptions of any of the types, and had trouble applying them to other people as well.

The Human Behavior model resonated for me much more. We are divided into

  • “I Think” (Intellectual)
  • “I Feel” (Emotional)
  • “I Am” (Creative/Unconscious)

Integrity comes from welcoming thoughts and actions through “I Think” which are congruent with one’s core “I Am” values, producing positive emotions in “I Feel”.

Prosperity consciousness is also addressed, with the suggestion to set near-term, concrete goals, and focus on the feelings that will come with achieving them.

The book presents a thorough analysis of customer-focused selling, and is full of practical suggestions. I think some of the tips are more applicable to career sales people working with large corporations, but there is still a lot of relevant material for a solo business person.

Available at Powell’s Books.

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