We asked LBM consultant and columnist Rick Davis to name his favorite columns among those he's written for ProSales over the years. Here are his picks:

April 2004 – Prospecting 101 . This is my favorite article because it states the importance of prospecting when salespeople did not believe prospecting was necessary. Admittedly my writing skills were raw, but the message proves that the No. 1 job for salespeople should always be prospecting. I take great pride in emphasizing the importance during a time when success came easy in an environment of economic abundance. Read more

January 2012 – Primary Measurements . Executives that perpetually measure past sales results without measuring the activity to predict future results will always feel victimized by bad sales performance. Good sales performance is cultural and must begin at the top of the chain of command. This article is an essential read for any manager or executive that is serious about achieving future sales goals. Read more

December 2006 – Second Place . Transactional selling creates combative price negotiations. Relational selling is about opening relationships while transactional is about closing the “next deal.”  The best way to find profitable clients and defeat the price objection is to be in position to earn the business when the client is dissatisfied with an existing supplier. This is the “second place” position and where sales leaders position themselves if they want to open new client relationships under the most favorable of circumstances. Read more

September 2008 – Clean Your Car . Preparedness is an essential trait of the best salespeople. Image also matters. This is also a rather prophetic article as it mirrors exactly the traits I observed in the man that might be the best salesperson I have yet to meet in our industry. Read more

October 2009 – Cowboy . This is not my regular column, but I think this article teaches volumes about the gestalt of selling. Gestalt, for readers who don’t know, is the idea that you pursue life achievements by focusing entirely in the present moment and doing what you can in that moment in time. The story of Jackie Allmond teaches all of us the value of learning from the past rather than dwelling in it. It teaches us not to ignore the future by taking for granted the actions necessary today. Mostly it reminds every reader of the value in simply keeping the faith that your efforts will ultimately pay off. Read more

Rick Davis is the president of Building Leaders, a training organization devoted exclusively to the sale of building materials. He can be reached at 773.769.4409, or contact Rick at rickdavis@buildingleaders.com.

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