Yesterday I posted: How to Sell Yourself Without Acting Like a Salesman. I mentioned that I do not like a sentence that includes both the words sales and lawyers. 

If you go to Amazon and do a search in books for “Selling” you will find 42,225 books on selling. That is a lot of books. I believe that a very high percentage of those books discuss techniques that would be inappropriate for lawyers and are the very techniques that make most of us uncomfortable selling.

There are some books on selling that I think we should all read. Here are six of my favorites:

  1. Trust-Based Selling: Using Customer Focus and Collaboration to Build Long-Term Relationships by Charles H. Green-I believe this book is particularly appropriate for lawyers. I especially like the summaries of each chapter at the end of the book. Charles also has written many valuable articles every lawyer should read, including Selling Professional Services.
  2. High Trust Selling: Make More Money in Less Time with Less Stress by Todd Duncan. I especially like this book because it begins with self reflection. As noted in the description of the first chapter: “The Truest Measure of Your Success Is Invisible to Your Clients.” 
  3. SPIN Sellingby Neil Rackham. Every lawyer I coach knows about Neil Rackham’s masterpiece. In this book he explains how to ask Situation, Problem, Implication and Need questions. Every lawyer should create his own list of those questions. 
  4. Stop Telling, Start Selling: How to Use Customer-Focused Dialogue to Close Salesnda Richardson  I liked this book because it alters the idea of what it means to be client focused. While some of the practical tips in this book would not apply to lawyers, many do apply to lawyers.
  5. The Best Damn Sales Book Ever: 16 Rock-Solid Rules for Achieving Sales Success! by Warren Greshes. This book really surprised me. It was far broader than “selling.” There are chapters on settling goals and creating an effective business plan. 
  6. The Sales Bible: The Ultimate Sales Resource, Revised Edition by Jeffrey Gitomer. I have read many of Jeffrey Gitomer’s books and find them remarkably helpful. 

P.S. If you want some easy reading to get started this weekend, take a look at my e-book Client Development in a Nutshell. I am confident you will get one or more ideas there that you can actually put into practice next week.