To Sell Is Human - Summary and Key Ideas

This book explores the art and science of selling in a new light. Pink argues that everyone is in sales - we're convincing, persuading, and influencing others to give up resources in exchange for something we have. To Sell Is Human offers a fresh look at the art of selling, backed by social science, to debunking the myth of the pushy salesman, and presenting the new ABCs of selling: Attunement, Buoyancy, and Clarity.

Great for salespeople, marketers, entrepreneurs, and leaders, and anyone who wants to understand how to sell ideas and influence others in the modern world. It’s also a book for those who are curious about the art and science behind selling in our daily lives.

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To Sell Is Human

Key ideas


Selling has transformed into a pervasive, collaborative skill necessary for success in diverse fields.

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Changing work dynamics necessitate sales skills even in non-sales roles.

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Internet-driven information democratization has transformed sales from pushy tactics to value-focused customer relationships.

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Effective persuasion requires attunement, strategic mimicry and balanced introversion-extroversion.

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Norman Hall's resilience and optimized positivity enable long-term door-to-door sales success.

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Identifying the right problems is now more valuable than solving given ones.

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Evolution of pitch tactics leverage brevity, creativity, and collaboration for dynamic conversations.

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Improvisation in business fosters deep listening, collaboration, and creative problem-solving.

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Personifying tasks and preserving altruism enhance effectiveness and influence in leadership.

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Summary & Review

To Sell Is Human by Daniel Pink illuminates the transformative shift in sales, emphasizing that everyone participates in selling in their daily lives. The book discards the stereotype of sales as manipulative, showcasing it as a mutually beneficial, empathetic process. Pink introduces the new ABCs—Attunement, Buoyancy, and Clarity—as essential skills for modern selling. It also highlights the importance of understanding others' perspectives, maintaining resilience, and offering clear, valuable solutions. Through engaging storytelling and research, Pink argues for a more humane approach to influencing others, making sales an art rooted in serving and connecting with people.

Daniel Pink

Daniel Pink is an acclaimed author of multiple bestselling books about business, work and behavior. He was a host and co-executive producer of the television series 'Crowd Control' which aired on National Geographic Channel. Pink's books have won multiple awards and have been translated into many languages.

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