25 years of helping people and businesses sell better for a sustainable future


This year we are celebrating 25 years in business.

Barrett opened on January 9th, 1995 with $3,000 and a purpose of helping people & businesses sell better now and for a sustainable future. Here’s our story in a just-over-4 minutes video about our journey so far.

Or if you prefer to read about it, here’s the transcript:

“Two years ago, I asked the Executive GM of a listed company to go out on a limb.

His business was in flux and sales falling. Like many leaders, he thought sales training was THE solution.

Training would happen, I said, but not yet.

Instead, I asked him to, ‘be a bit adventurous, got out on a limb, and look over the edge. There’s a different approach, one that will help you sell better now and sustainably into the future’.

Today their share price is tracking north with sales, margins, culture and customer satisfaction never better.

Shifting to a systems oriented, customercentric, human-focussed way of selling steered them in the right direction. 

For me, my Selling Better journey began on 9th January 1995, when I went out on a limb to start my own business.

I’d been in corporate for 11 years, giving my best, but feeling out of sorts, unsure about the purpose of business and sales.

In hindsight, business priorities were dramatically shifting:

  • People were reduced to consumers with an overemphasis on profit maximisation and reductionism at the expense of holistic systems
  • Race-to-the-bottom pricing and predatory deals began to dominate doing away with ethics, healthy relationships and environmental care; the moral compass was disappearing
  • The rise of individualism and celebrity CEOs at the cost of collaboration, diversity, and ‘we’ cultures

It seemed to me that care for societies and environments were fading from the core of business.

I knew there was a better way.

I started with Sales because everybody lives by selling something. It’s a vital life skill that allows opportunity to flourish and people to prosper.

But what made great salespeople, systems, operations, sales leaders and cultures?

Over the next 25 years I became a pioneer and embarked on what became my unofficial PhD. Early on I discovered that learning is longitudinal, an ever evolving process so I also became a creator, behaviouralist, engineer, philosopher, an enabler.

Based on all the knowledge we assembled, we built a robust business covering every aspect of sales.

Then in 2014, we were hit by a terrible storm.

The three things I’d walked away from in 1995 – greed, lack of ethics, and hyper individualism – threatened to derail our business.

However, what we’d built allowed us to navigate out of that storm. We had a solid ship – our system, a capable, courageous crew, a long term strategy, our purpose and a moral compass.

Tempered by the experience, and because we’ve always emphasised ethical sales, we wrote The Selling Better Manifesto to show there IS a better way of doing business.

We nailed our flag to the mast.

Our purpose remains: We help people and businesses sell better for a sustainable future, by transforming every sales operation into an ethical, human-centred sales system and culture that respects people and nature.

Our 25 years taught us Selling is ubiquitous. It’s a complex, dynamic, variable human-centred system.

It transforms lives and careers and Selling Better leads organisations toward thriving communities, viable economies and healthy environments.

Selling is everybody’s business and everybody lives by selling something.”

Remember, everybody lives by selling something.

Related topics

Celebrating 25 years of Helping People & Businesses Sell Better

The Selling Better Manifesto

Human-centred sales operations

A year ago (roughly)

The Sales Juggling Act: how to keep your eye on the sales prize