Filed under: Implementation February 11, 2011

There are a growing number Salesforce books for configuring the system, but I have found the most helpful for implementations are more generic. There are also a few about the business value of salesforce automation, but these are the ones I have found the most insightful. For each title, I offer why I found them particularly insightful.

  • “The New Strategic Selling: The Unique Sales System Proven Successful by the World’s Best Companies,” Stephen E. Heiman, Diane Sanchez, Tad Tuleja, Amazon Kindle, 1998
    • Some new Salesforce customers struggle with defining their sales process. This book describes what has become known as the “Miller Heiman” process and a good starting point for struggling implementations. The process is actually just one chapter and the “system” goes into detail about the numerous considerations that go into a successful sales deal.
  • “Leading Change,” John P. Kotter, Harvard Business School Press, 1996
    • This book described eight steps that all organizational change management projects need to manage. These steps became so popular that it is hard to imagine any change project that does not incorporate at least some of these steps these days. You might have heard phrases like “sense of urgency” and “short term wins.” However, as an observer of change practices, John P. Kotter did not invent these steps or expressions, but observed these steps to be common in successful change endeavors. His contribution was to synthesize these steps into a comprehensive system. However, a simple listing of the steps do not do them justice. The true insights can only be found by reading this book.
  • “The Strategy-Focused Organization: How Balanced Scorecard Companies Thrive in the New Business Environment,” Robert S. Kaplan, David P. Norton, Harvard Business School Publishing, 2001
    • Kaplan and Norton popularized the Balanced Scorecard in their 1992 Harvard Business Review article that suggested that corporations should not limited themselves to financial performance metrics only. Customer metrics, process metrics, and knowledge metrics are perspectives that are needed to balance the financial metrics. The Balanced Scorecard has since evolved and this book describes how all four perspectives relate to each other. They also developed a graphical way to express the relationships as “strategy maps.” Creating a strategy map may be overkill for many Salesforce implementations, but the concepts are certainly valuable in any key business improvement project.
  1. uli says:

    In my opinion the best salesforce book for beginners is: For Dummies

    For more advanced users it is Secrets of Success: Best Practices for Growth and Profitability

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