The Sales Survival Handbook: Cold Calls, Commissions, and Caffeine Addiction--The Real Truth About Life in Sales

The Sales Survival Handbook: Cold Calls, Commissions, and Caffeine Addiction--The Real Truth About Life in Sales

by Ken Kupchik
The Sales Survival Handbook: Cold Calls, Commissions, and Caffeine Addiction--The Real Truth About Life in Sales

The Sales Survival Handbook: Cold Calls, Commissions, and Caffeine Addiction--The Real Truth About Life in Sales

by Ken Kupchik


(Not eligible for purchase using B&N Audiobooks Subscription credits)
    Qualifies for Free Shipping
    Choose Expedited Shipping at checkout for delivery by Thursday, February 29
    Check Availability at Nearby Stores

Related collections and offers


From the cold calling, to commissions and caffeine addiction, learn the real hard truth about life in the sales profession.

Lying customers. Changing quotas. Soul-crushing management. PSSD-inducing pressure (Post Sales Stress Disorder). What’s not to love about the world of sales?

Whether you’ve been in sales for a while, are new to the game, or just need a lift, The Sales Survival Handbook shows you how to:

  • Overcome objections without tears (yours and theirs)
  • Get out of a sales slump legally
  • Cold call without needing sedatives
  • Beg for referrals (yes, beg)
  • Spot common types of customers, coworkers, and managers
  • Maintain a social life (mission impossible?)

Complete with quizzes, lists, real-world advice, and all the dos and don’ts that have popped up thus far in the sales world, The Sales Survival Handbook offers you everything you need to survive the agony and enjoy the ecstasy of your sales career.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780814438640
Publisher: AMACOM
Publication date: 09/07/2017
Pages: 208
Sales rank: 322,263
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 1.00(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Ken Kupchik is a writer and the creator of Sales Humor, a popular social media account with over one million followers across Facebook, LinkedIn and Instagram. His first book, The Sales Survival Handbook: Cold Calls, Commissions, and Caffeine Addiction—The Real Truth About Life in Sales, was published by AMACOM (now HarperCollins Leadership) in 2017. He lives in Boston, MA.

Read an Excerpt


You're now ready to find a company where you can finally put your sales knowledge to use. There are literally millions of sales jobs out there. But not all of them are created equal, so choose your new employer carefully and wisely.

Here are tips on finding the right company and red flags to watch out for along the way:

Try to find a company with a good reputation.

Tip: Conduct extensive online research about the company, including reading reviews from former employees if possible.

Red flag: The company is currently under investigation by the US Securities and Exchange Commission.

It helps to get a job selling a product that you truly believe in.

Tip: If you have to convince yourself that what you're selling provides value, it means you don't truly believe in your product

Red flag: If you're a vegan, selling steaks door to door will not be a good fit for you.

Make sure you feel comfortable with the person or people who will be your supervisor(s).

Tip: Ask lots of questions during the interview process to get a better idea of what you can expect if you decide to join the company.

Red flag: The sales manager interviewing you quietly pulls you aside and asks you to let him borrow some money and promises to pay you back as soon as possible.

Evaluate the office culture.

Tip: Before coming on board, ask if you can spend some time observing what goes on in the office day to day to get a better feel for what your work environment will be like.

Red flag: There are fistfights, and salespeople are betting packs of cigarettes on card games during the workday.

Find out how the compensation plan is structured.

Tip: Ask the hiring manager or sales manager interviewing you to provide a detailed breakdown of the comp plan and the average and median incomes of the company's other sales reps.

Red flag: The sales reps at the company appear to be eating only canned tuna and microwaved beans for lunch.

Find out what kind of support the company provides for sales reps.

Tip: Ask management if it provides leads or if you will be responsible for sourcing your own business. Also ask about sales training and continuing education.

Red flag: The sales reps are prospecting for customers by yelling at random people walking by the office on the street.

Sell the employer on why it should hire you.

Tip: When the hiring manager asks if you have any questions, always ask, "When can I start?" and always follow up the interview with a thank-you note and multiple follow-up emails and phone calls, showing your tenacity as a salesperson.

Red flag: If you ask, "When can I start?" and the sales manager answers, "Never, you idiot," it's safe to assume you didn't get the job.

Excerpted from THE SALES SURVIVAL HANDBOOK: Cold Calls, Commissions, and Caffeine Addiction: The Real Truth About Life in Sales by Ken Kupchik. Copyright © 2018 Ken Kupchik. Published by AMACOM Books, a division of American Management Association, New York, NY. Used with permission.

All rights reserved.

Table of Contents

Foreword ix



Is Sales Right for You? (Quiz) 5

Sales Terms and Definitions 8

What to Expect: The Good, the Bad, and the Crazy 11

Coming to Terms: The Five Stages of Sales Grief 15

Picking the Right Company and Spotting Red Flags 17


Coming Out to Your Family and Friends As a Salesperson 23

The Different Types of Salespeople 25

The Different Types of Sales Managers 30

Comp Plans, Sandbagging, and How to Deal with Inconsistent Income 34

Getting Along with Your Coworkers in Sales 39

The Sales Diet 43

Mission Impossible: Dating While Working in Sales 47

Dealing with the Long Hours 50


Irrational Optimism: The Truth About How to Succeed in Sales 59

Leads and Why Most of Them Suck 63

How to Beg for Referrals 67

Cold-Calling 70

Business-to-Business Sales 75

Business-to-Consumer Sales 82

Door-to-Door Sales 90

How to Get Out of a Sales Slump Without Breaking the Law 96


The Different Types of Customers 105

Are Buyers Really Liars? 110

Building Rapport 114

Listening: The Most Important Sales Skill 118

Objections and How to Overcome Them Without Tears 122

Dealing with Rejection 132

Closing the Deal 136


What to Do/Not to Do After the Sale 145

Spending Your Commission Checks 150

Going from Hero to Zero 154

Sales Management: Getting Promoted 156

Sales Trainers and How to Spot the Con Men 161

How to Switch Sales Jobs 165

Rules for Quitting Your Sales Job 168

Writing Your Letter of Resignation 170

PSSD (Post-Sales Stress Disorder) 172


Acknowledgments 181

Notes 183

Index 185

From the B&N Reads Blog

Customer Reviews