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    About Us

    Turning Sales Talent into Sales Performance is our reason for being.

Turning Talent into Performance

As a sales performance consulting company, we help business-to-business sales organizations attract, retain, and develop the highest performing salespeople and sales managers. 

The Center for Sales Strategy timeline began in 1983 when Steve Marx founded "CSS" as a customer-focused selling and talent-focused management consulting company, to serve media sales organizations. Today, we continue that tradition consulting all types of B2B sales organizations.

The Center for Sales Strategy will help your company develop a strategic approach to sales, select and train the most talented salespeople, and provide you with the tactical tools essential for new business development.

About Us Infographic


Our Team

Our Team comes from sales and management backgrounds, they understand the importance of building results-oriented sales cultures. We serve clients throughout the United States, Canada, and New Zealand from satellite offices across the United States.

Our Approach

  • We’re long-term: We help you develop lasting improvements in your organization’s sales performance.
  • We’re comprehensive: Our Performance Prism is a holistic process aligning your sales organization to maximize performance.
  • We’re strategic: We provide lasting solutions that improve your sales culture and guide your business development tactics.

We work most effectively with companies that demonstrate consistent values, hands-on management, and a belief in developing the talent of their people. We look for companies we can truly partner with, transforming their sales talent into high performance. 


Our Culture

Also check out our CSS Culture Deck.

Our Values




The Center for Sales Strategy Timeline

  • 1983

    Counselor Selling System (CSS) founded by Steve Marx in Worcester, MA

    Katz Broadcasting president approaches Steve Marx to serve as executive in charge of creating sales training.

  • Jun 1984

    Customer Focused Selling debuts

    Steve develops the foundation of our sales training system and the forerunner of today's Sales Accelerator, formerly called How Selling.

  • Jan 1985

    Talent Focused Management debuts

    We launch Talent Focused Management (TFM) as our foundation management workshop.

  • Jun 1988

    Counselor Selling System (CSS) signs first non-radio client

    Operating as Counselor Selling Systems, we partner with WTVQ Television in Lexington, Kentucky.

  • Jan 1991

    Counselor Selling System (CSS) doubles in size

    Steve Marx hires Jim Hopes as his partner.

  • Jul 1993

    Company begins operating as The Center for Sales Strategy (CSS)

    The nickname of "CSS" is retained as the company begins operating under its current name.

  • Aug 1993

    Headquarters move to Tampa, Florida

    Our corporate office is moved to historic Hyde Park in Tampa and still located there today.

  • Mar 1995

    First non-media company joins our family of clients

    Our selling system moves beyond selling media to selling services to the media industry.

  • APR 1997

    First international company joins our family of clients

    Good onya mate! Australia's preeminent broadcaster Austereo becomes our first international client.

  • Aug 2000

    Centralized classroom training for CFS moves online

    We develop an online version of the original benchmark workshop Customer Focused Selling.

  • Sep 2000

    Partner with Talent+ for talent-based assessments

    Talent+ provides a system to identify natural sales talent found in top sales performers.

  • Nov 2000

    Our first simulation-based workshop debuts

    Marketing Pro begins a series of workshops applying Customer Focused Selling in simulations based on client situations.

  • feb 2005

    Our company continues to grow as we exceed 25 employees

    What began as a long time sole proprietorship and partnership, grows with employees across the country.

  • aug 2008

    Steve Marx passes leadership to Jim Hopes and John Henley

    With Steve as Chairman Emeritus, Jim as CEO and John as COO take over the company leadership.

  • jan 2012

    We’ve gone gold! Gold Partner, that is, with HubSpot

    Under the leadership of EVP Matt Sunshine, Inbound Marketing Consulting becomes one of our fastest growing divisions.

  • jul 2012

    Our long-standing customer focused selling system is updated as How Selling

    Training more than 13,000 salespeople online since 2000, we revise our sales system of creating specific client value.

  • Jun 2014

    Inbound Marketing division becomes LeadG2

    Named a HubSpot Platinum Partner, LeadG2 creates its own branding image to continue its accelerated growth with Inbound Marketing consulting.

  • Oct 2014

    Talent department launches online talent management dashboard tool

    Managers are able to improve how they recruit, select, and develop the talent on their sales teams with the Talent Dashboard.

  • APR 2015

    Jim Hopes passes ownership to Matt Sunshine

    John Henley, Matt Sunshine, and Jim Hopes now lead the company as Managing Partners.

  • Jul 2015

    Culture Committee creates strong sense of camaraderie and strengthens a common culture within our company

    New volunteer committee leads in celebrating employee milestones, encouraging health & wellness, sharing high fives and successes, and providing opportunities to make a difference in the community.

  • aug 2015

    First major non-profit client

    American Heart Association’s Mid-Atlantic Region partners with us to run live Talent Focused Management and Cause Selling programs for their managers and development officers.

  • Jan 2016

    LeadG2 serves Professional Services

    LeadG2 acquires expertise to help accountants, consultants, recruiters, and other professional service firms improve visibility and lead generation.

  • Oct 2016

    Dani Buckley promoted to General Manager for LeadG2 division

    As LeadG2 grows, Matt promotes Dani to manage the LeadG2 team, increase sales enablement offerings, improve systems, and oversee new client onboarding.

  • Oct 2016

    Talent department launches online sales talent assessments

    The Online Sales Talent Interview (OSTI) allows our clients to order assessments on their sales candidates in volume with a same day turnaround.

  • Jan 2018

    The new position of Partner is added as we celebrate 35 years

    Beth Sunshine, Greg Giersch, and Stephanie Downs take on the new role of Partner helping with strategic direction, forward thinking, and managing the daily business with the Managing Partners.

  • Jan 2018

    The Sales Accelerator Series online courses are launched

    Our revised sales training strikes the balance between going deep enough to build an effective, tailored solution, and still moving fast enough to accelerate the sale.

  • Jan 2019

    Up Your Culture Launches

    Up Your Culture, the company’s third division, launches to focus on helping companies create a culture of engagement.

  • Oct 2019

    CSS Publishes Media Sales Report

    The first Media Sales Report is published which gathers research and data from hundreds of media sales professionals to report on the state of the media industry.

  • Mar 2020

    Impact Leadership System is Launched

    Leadership best practices structured into 28 online, on demand modules covering People, Process, Plan, and Performance.

  • Sep 2020

    TFM Experience

    Our first and most popular workshop, Talent Focused Management (originally launched in 1985) has gone virtual, as 10-week, highly interactive instructor-led series and simulation.

  • JAN 2021

    LeadG2 becomes a Hubspot Diamond Solutions Partner

    Named a HubSpot Diamond Solutions Partner following accelerated growth and expansion in 2020.

  • MAR 2022

    Talent Services adds 4 new assessments for Talent Focused Organizations

    Operations Management (OMTA), Sales Management (MTA), Professional Associates (PATA), and Customer Service (CSTA) added to our portfolio of talent dashboard tools.

  • JUN 2022

    Up Your Culture Publishes Engagement Company Culture Report

    Engage 2022 is the first annual report that studied the current landscape of company culture and employee engagement.

  • JUL 2023

    Sales Accelerator Ai Launches

    This custom AI chat is a closed system, trained exclusively on the Sales Accelerator process, and tailored to supercharge sales performance.