Best Books to Give Your Sales Team

10 min read
Jake Wang
Jake Wang
Jr Marketing Manager

Published: August 06, 2020

Looking for ways to motivate your sales team? Tired of talking about the same old ideas with no one listening? It’s time to hit the books. Motivating your team to constantly learn and improve will help not only your team but also create a culture of learners. Giving your team some books creates perspective and helps reinforce whatever training you might have provided. And selling is a skill that requires perfecting. With endless tactics and styles out there, these books can help your team find the approach that feels authentic to them. 

Here are some of our favorite reads we recommend sharing with your sales team and leaders. Whether you are looking to redefine the team’s culture, master the art of onboarding, or motivate your sales to take it to the next level, we have selected the top books we think every sales team should own and read.

Predictable Revenue by Aaron Ross and Marylou Tyler

With a moniker like the “Sales Bible of Silicon Valley,” this is one book worth gifting to both the first-timer and the seasoned veteran. 

Follow along as Aaron Ross chucks the traditional cold-call approach out the window and talks about the sales lead generation process he used at Salesforce to help grow revenue by more than $100 mil. 

If you’ve ever wondered…

  • What does it take for your sales team to generate as many highly-qualified new leads as you want?
  • How can you create predictable revenue and meet your financial goals without your constant focus and attention? 
  • What does it take to attract top sales talent (people who exceed and want to stay and grow with your company)?

…then this is the book you are looking for. Best for teams interested in building a powerful sales machine and cultivating a sales culture people love.

Best for: Senior Sales positions that are looking for ways to really understand their metrics and make decisions based on data. 

Baseline Selling by Dave Kurlan

For your diehard baseball fans. Don’t be fooled by the use of a metaphor here — this straightforward approach by Dave Kurlan unpacks real-world strategies and tactics to level up your sales team immediately.

Learn about…

  • the Psychology of Sales
  • the Sport of Prospecting
  • the Four Bases of the Sales Pipeline

…and more in this practical and entertaining guide. 

Recommended for teams looking for a simple way to gain the fundamental skills for closing the sale in any situation. Funny stories included.

Best for: New Sales team, BDR/SDR transitioning to a sales role. Great book for onboarding.

The Sales Acceleration Formula by Mark Roberge

Think sales is more of an art form than science? 

Mark Roberge presents evidence to the contrary. An engineer by training, Mark went against the grain when he challenged the conventional understanding of sales management and applied a metrics-driven, process-oriented approach.

And it worked. As the SVP of Worldwide Sales and Services at HubSpot, Mark led hundreds of his employees to the acquisition and retention of the company’s first 10,000 customers.

This book tells the story. Learn the scalable, predictable approach to growing revenue and building a winning sales team, broken down into four components:

  • The Sales Hiring Formula
  • The Sales Training Formula
  • The Sales Management Formula
  • The Demand Generation Formula 

A good read for your hustlers that believe in working harder and smarter.

Best for: Senior Sales positions looking to expand. This book is great for anyone wanting to transition to a Sales Manager position or Director. 

Spin Selling by Neil Rackham

An oldie but goodie.

This sales classic by Neil Rackham introduces the SPIN selling framework based on 12 years and a million dollars of research at Huthwaite. SPIN selling focuses on how to ask better questions when selling high value products and services.

Some of the topics covered:

  • Understanding Customer Needs in the Major Sale
  • The Four Types of Questions in the SPIN Strategy
  • Tips for Turning Theory into Practice

Rackham also answers key questions such as “What makes success in major sales” and “Why do techniques like closing work in small sales but fail in larger ones?” Get this for the team that loves using advice that has stood the test of time to go further faster.

Best for: Great onboarding book for sales team. We offer this book to the SwagUp Team! 

💡 Check out how to Revive Your Old leads!

Secrets of Question Based Selling by Thomas Freese

Never underestimate the power of asking the right question at the right time.

In this realistic book on question based selling, Thomas Freese lays out the basics and more with a no-nonsense approach. Learn the techniques to:

  • Overcome customer skepticism and establish credibility sooner
  • Generate more return calls and motivate different types of buyers
  • Develop more internal champions and close more sales
  • And more!

This is for anyone that realizes how you sell something matters as much as, if not more than, the product. Ask better questions, increase the probability of success, and decrease the risk of failure.

Best for: Perfect book for anyone salesperson or leader. This should be on everyone’s bookshelf. 

Behind the Cloud by Marc Benioff and Carlye Adler

You’ve heard the saying “study the past to understand the present.” 

But did you know studying the past is also important if you want to define the future?

If you haven’t, and you want to cultivate the superstar sales team in your hands, pick up this read from Marc Benioff. Behind the Cloud is the inside scoop of how Salesforce went from a startup in an apartment to the world’s fastest growing software company, complete with the playbooks to success.

Marc outlines the story and strategies in detailed sections including:

  • How to Energize Your Customers into a Million-Member Sales Team
  • How to Cut Through the Noise and Pitch the Bigger Picture
  • How to Use Events to Build Buzz and Drive Business
  • How to Create Alignment – the Key to Organizational Success
  • and more!

Get this insightful book for sales leaders and entrepreneurs that want to be able to innovate and grow in any economic climate.

Best for: Top Sales leaders wanting to improve their skills or move into the next level. 

Hacking Sales by Max Altschuler

For the modern sales team interested in efficient and high tech sales processes to generate more revenue on less, period.

With sales continuing to evolve, Max Altschuler is here to help your team identify the changes they need to continually raise the bar. Some of the topics covered:

  • Identify your Ideal Customer and your Total Addressable Market
  • Build massive lead lists and properly target your campaigns
  • Learn effective hacks for messaging and social media outreach
  • Overcome customer objections before they happen

This book walks through the entire sales process and offers critical hacks every step of the way. It’s the roadmap to fast and efficient revenue growth. Get this for anyone who loves learning the tools and tactics to a leaner and meaner sales machine.

Best for: Sales Managers leading a sales team or group of BDR/SDR 

The Challenger Sale by Matthew Dixon and Brent Adamson

Conventional advice: build relationships with your customers.

Matthew Dixon and Brent Adamson say that’s not enough. Instead, the secret to sales success is something the best salespeople have been doing for ages: taking control of the sale.

The Challenger paradigm involves a customer approach tailored around insights about how customers can save or make more money. Not an endless list of facts and features. Challengers offer a tailored message and are willing to push back when necessary. 

Topics covered include:

  • The Evolving Journey of Solution Selling
  • How to Build Insight-Led Conversations
  • Tailoring for Resonance
  • And more!

Get this for the team of high performers always on the lookout for ways to refine their approach for better and better results.

Best for: This is a classic sales book and the perfect gift for sales teams. Highly recommended as an onboarding gift! 

The Challenger Customer by Matthew Dixon and Brent Adamson

So you’ve got a team of Challengers on your hands.

But are they targeting the right customer? 

From bestselling authors Matthew Dixon and Brent Adamson, this follow up delivers powerful insights from brand-new CEB research based on data from thousands of B2B marketers, sellers, and buyers around the world.

Learn about:

  • Distinguishing the “Talkers” vs “Mobilizer” in Any Organization
  • The Dark Side of Customer Consensus
  • Taking Control of Consensus Creation
  • And more!

It’s no secret that deals are getting more complex and involving more players. Help your team cut out the noise and focus on the right customer. Because they are the ones with the credibility, persuasive skill, and will to effectively challenge the status quo. 

Best for: Sales teams that focus on B2B selling. 

💡 Check out How to Approach Selling During a Pandemic 

The Sales Development Playbook by Trish Bertuzzi

Want to skyrocket growth? Sales development is the answer.

But the distance between knowledge and practice can be overwhelming. Trish Bertuzzi has written this playbook to help you achieve explosive growth – as in the kind of growth that weather satellites can see from space – with fewer missteps

Learn about the six elements for the sales development success:

  1. Strategy
  2. Specialization
  3. Recruiting
  4. Retention
  5. Execution
  6. Leadership

Sure, you can get good results with just a couple of these elements. But if just good isn’t enough, and what you really want is to nail sales development, then this is the book for you.

Best for: SDR/BDR, and Salespeople. This is a great book for entry to mid level sales people. 

Never Split the Difference by Chris Voss

We love this read as a phenomenal perspective on negotiation. 

From former FBI international hostage negotiator Chris Voss, this book offers a comprehensive set of field-tested tools for high-stakes negotiations whether you’re in the boardroom or at home.

Some of the principles covered include:

  • Establishing Rapport and Trust
  • Being Smart about Empathy and Momentum
  • Getting Permission to Persuade 
  • Moving from Conflict to Collaboration
  • And more!

Get this for the team that believes training their intuition to be trustworthy in the most challenging and competitive of situations is the key to success.

Best for: Everyone should read this, even if you are not in sales. Power of negotiating and how people think. Perfect book for sales teams! 


True leaders motivate their teams to do better. What better way to encourage your team than by providing some of the top sales books. Providing books for  your team creates a great culture that will pay off! Teams with great culture, work better and even produce more revenue! When your team is happy they are happy to their clients. Creating a culture that focuses on employee growth and learning is the ultimate hack to building a strong team. 

Want more swag ideas to motivate your team? 🚀

How to boost employee morale with swag & virtual events

The Best Care Package Ideas You don’t want to miss!

Top Remote Workforce Ideas Part 1

Share to the world

Related blog posts

Stay in the loop

Stay in the loop

Be the first to learn about the latest swag and culture building tips