Most Clicked SmartBrief on Sales Stories

1. 4 personality types and how to sell to them

SmartBrief on Sales | Apr 16, 2015

There are four major personality types on which salespeople should focus and should craft individualized pitches. These personality types are assertive, amiable, expressive and analytic. (04/15)

2. How to be a lousy manager

SmartBrief on Sales | Apr 15, 2015

Managers are often to blame for employee complaints because of the harmful behaviors they exhibit, Dan McCarthy writes. He catalogs some of the worst managerial offenses, including betraying confidences and sitting on the sidelines during moments of crisis. "Managers, do an honest self-assessment -- or better yet, get some candid feedback -- and if you are doing any of these things, make a resolution to STOP doing it!" he advises. (04/11)

3. Why plain-text e-mail works better than HTML

SmartBrief on Sales | Apr 15, 2015

An A/B test comparing plain-text and HTML e-mail came back with surprising results: The plain-text e-mail was preferred and had a higher click-thru rate. "People respond better to other people -- or what seems like another person," Aaron Ross and Jason Lemkin write. "When newsletters look and feel like an email coming from one person, your audience is more likely to respond." (04/14)

4. Why CRM systems are critical for a competitive edge

SmartBrief on Sales | Apr 17, 2015

Customer relationship management systems are the key to success for companies facing numerous digital touch points with prospects that need to be tracked, writes Fergal Glynn. This is especially true when a company experiences rapid growth, to ensure that leads are not lost in the shuffle, Glynn notes. (04/15)

5. Cold e-mail pitches can be improved in surprising ways

SmartBrief on Sales | Apr 13, 2015

Applying basic psychology can improve a sales response, even in a seemingly simple task such as cold e-mailing. Some tips: Keep your language simple, don't be afraid to challenge prospects, and show the benefits of a product or pitch instead of merely talking about them. (04/10)

6. The strange case of John Wilkes Booth's killer

SmartBrief on Sales | Apr 16, 2015

John Wilkes Booth met his end, 12 days after killing President Abraham Lincoln and fleeing Ford's Theatre, in a barn in Port Royal, Va. Booth was killed by Boston Corbett, an eccentric Union Army veteran who had castrated himself with a pair of scissors. Rather than being hailed as an avenging hero, Corbett was reviled, eventually institutionalized, and disappeared in 1888 after escaping. (04/12)

7. Time management is a crucial, but overlooked, factor in sales success

SmartBrief on Sales | Apr 13, 2015

Time management is an overlooked skill that is integral to sales success, especially if a poorly managed schedule means the rep spends too little time selling. Marketing, training and technology are three important time-management tactics that every sales rep should master. (04/10)

8. No leader develops without a little risk

SmartBrief on Sales | Apr 13, 2015

Leadership development typically happens when people take a chance and give an up-and-comer an opportunity with risk, writes Julie Winkle Giulioni. That takes courage from everyone involved. "Development can be dicey. But it's precisely through the act of taking risks on others that today's leaders build tomorrow's leaders," she writes. SmartBrief/SmartBlog on Leadership (04/09)

9. How to make the most of hidden talent

SmartBrief on Sales | Apr 14, 2015

Some talented people will only be discovered when leaders make the effort, says John Baldoni in this blog post and video. "Some star performers may lack the confidence to challenge conventional thinking about themselves and therefore they stay in their given roles," Baldoni says. SmartBrief/SmartBlog on Leadership (04/10)

10. Leaders need to show their human side, says former CIA deputy

SmartBrief on Sales | Apr 16, 2015

As CIA deputy director, Timothy Kilbourn liked to send handwritten thank-you notes. "If people feel that you see them as a human being and not just as a number, they'll break their backs for you," he says. Washington Post (tiered subscription model), The (04/13)

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