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Dr. Durrel Parker discusses his new book, “Essential Sales Skills”

Dr. Durrel Parker is the author of “Essential Sales Skills: Best Practices for Building Relationships and Having Meaningful Conversations that Convert into Sales”. His book focuses on making sales through building relationships with target customers, leading to better deals and greater long-term success.

Dr. Parker believes that building relationships is a better way to have long term sales success than traditional salesman techniques are, and aims to teach people the same techniques that have worked for him in his career. He wants to explain that the art of selling isn’t about being pushy – it’s about working out what your customers want, and delivering it to them consistently.

“Essential Sales Skills” is designed to help anyone to learn powerful sales skills, and teach them to be more successful in business.

What is your professional background?

I am a leadership expert, CEO/Principal Consultant, influencer, speaker, professor, and author who is passionate about making a difference in the lives of others. I have extensive experience delivering innovative solutions to regional, national, and global organizations in a wide range of sectors: engineering, healthcare, manufacturing, insurance, information technology, and accounting. I am also a visiting professor at various state public and private universities across the United States teaching undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral courses in leadership, business administration, management, and human resources.

Given my academic accolades and multifaceted professional experience, I bring a strategic approach to help people and organizations connect values with desired outcomes. My passion for transforming the minds of people expands beyond the office and classroom to the boardroom as a board member for organizations focusing on early childhood education and first-generation high school students in the Southeastern United States.

What inspired you to write the “Essential Sales Skills” book?

I was inspired to write this book because of my colleagues and professional past. People often seek advice from me because I am a consultant and I have worked in a variety of sales and leadership positions for regional, national, and global organizations. Additionally, my experience comes from a variety of sectors such as telemarketing, automotive, retail, staffing sales – the list can go on. Over the years, I have recognized the skills that made me successful professionally and financially. After finishing my Doctor of Philosophy degree in Business Administration with a specialization in Organizational Leadership, I was inspired to write a book that was easy to follow and combined theoretical and practical concepts.

What are some of the key topics you explore in the book?

The book is broken down into individual lessons to take you step-by-step through acquiring powerful sales skills to help individuals achieve their goals. The book focuses on empowering everyone to use their natural ability to successfully sell. The first section, Selling isn’t just for salespeople, is about matching what you have to offer to what customers need. Next, I cover how successful selling starts with developing the mindset for sales success and preparing to sell with confidence. Then, I will walk readers through initiating, developing, and managing relationships that lead to sales. Managing relationships requires having the necessary customer-focused sales skills such as listening, asking questions, educating, collaborating, communicating value, and coaching to close. The end of the book ties all the topics together.

What do you feel is the main difference between your book and others covering the same topic?

My goal was to write a book that was both informative and practical. Unlike other books that are lengthy and monotonous, my book is interactive and concise. There is an Action Guide following each change that helps readers to associate the concepts to their industry and apply what they learned at once. The book’s ultimate goal is to connect leadership principles with sales concepts by helping people serve their customers instead of selling to their customers.

How long did it take to write “Essential Sales Skills”?

The writing process took about three months to complete. While this sounds short considering the book’s size and content, there were a lot of late nights and early mornings. I set a strict deadline and I was determined to achieve it by any means necessary. I planned everything from writing to revision time for each chapter. Nonetheless, I have learned a lot about the writing process such as how to appropriately manage my time and set achievable benchmarks to ensure timely completion.

Did you face any challenges in creating the book?

Certainly! The writing process can be challenging, especially in the brainstorming phase. As the author, there were a lot of concepts that I wanted to include and several that I removed. The most challenging portion of it all was finding the equilibrium between content, ease of readability, and reader engagement. Most people might not be aware of this, but there are two versions of the book.

What types of people is the book most suited to?

The book is most appropriate for anyone responsible for recruitment as well as individuals who are selling products and services. It focuses on helping people with varying skill levels to understand the personal nature of selling. My customer base consists of people who want to gain a competitive advantage such as customer-facing leaders, entrepreneurs, students, realtors, and even other authors. In essence, people who want to WIN!

Do you plan to write any more books in the future?

Of course! Writing is inspirational and influential. I seek to inspire my readers to examine themselves and create the grandest vision for their lives. As a scholar and practitioner, I have more books in the works. I recently published a book that includes a reflective journal titled, Uncovering the Greatest Version of Yourself: 10 Ways to Change Your Life and Assert Personal Power in Uncertain Times. The book was written to help readers think about their situations, analyze and gain insight about their actions, consider new approaches, and record their thoughts and plans.

Thank you Dr. Parker for your time!
You can follow up with Dr. Durrel Parker and get his book at