The Importance of Continuing Education

Continuing education is a must in today's world, where there is endless information at our fingertips. Continuing education can help you develop new skills, stay informed about current trends, remain relevant in your field, potentially earn you more money, boost your cognitive function, and encourage personal development. Life is a journey, and we should never stop learning.

Continuing education comes from everywhere; it's not exclusive to formal commitments like training courses or certificates (although these are still important). Think about the past year of your life. What have you learned? Has there been advice from a coworker that hit home, experiences from a friend or loved one which taught you something, or a personal lesson you went through? Or perhaps, being a sales professional, you have read an article or book that provided new insight.

Reading is one of the easiest ways to educate yourself and grow your professional career continuously. If you search on Amazon, you'll find tens of thousands of sales books. So, when you set out to expand your bookshelf or read the insights of a selling expert, how do you choose what to read first?

Sales Book Recommendations

To help you parse through the surplus of sales content, here are three books that have impacted me so far in my career. I truly enjoyed these books as they helped me think bigger about sales.

  1. Little Red Book of Selling – 12.5 Principles of Sales Greatness
    By Jeffrey Gitomer
    This is a quick read, great for those looking for straightforward, easy-to-consume sales content. Here are some takeaways discussed in the book:

    - Making the value of the product or service stand out more than the price
    - Learning how to stop being a barrier to your success – starting with expecting more from yourself than any manager ever would
    - How to optimize your potential as a sales professional and make informed choices about your business

    For anyone looking to elevate their sales career, this book contains 12.5 easily applicable sales principles. Gitomer emphasizes that your success is entirely up to you and how much you want to succeed.
  2. To Sell Is Human
    By Daniel Pink
    This book speaks to the idea that no matter what you do, or whether your job title has "sales" in it, we are all sales professionals in some way. We all sell something. It looks at the art and science of selling, with Pink heavily rooting his writing in surveys, statistics, and stories. It also teaches:

    - Five ways to frame your offering or message to be more clear and more persuasive
    - Why extraverts don’t make the best salespeople
    - The new ABCs of moving others (it's not "Always Be Closing")
    - Three key sales abilities: Pitch, Improvise, and Serve
  3. You’ll Never Get No for An Answer
    By Jack Carew
    One of the staple readings we have here at Carew is this book by Jack Carew. Jack founded Carew International and was the true architect of our Dimensions of Professional Selling® (DPS) program, and this book is a testament to his knowledge. You'll Never Get No for An Answer covers:

    - The human dynamics of selling
    - Dynamic, unique sales strategies and methodologies that apply to sales professionals in all industries

What are some of your favorite sales readings that impacted your professional career, and how do you utilize that knowledge daily?