How to Simplify The Complex Sale w/ Brian Burns [Episode 317]

Among the many topics that Brian and I discuss are the problems Brian sees in the poor implementation of sales automation tools, the lack of sales training to teach sales reps how to authentically connect with customers in the complex buying process, and traits for success as a sales maverick.

Joining me on this episode of Accelerate! is Brian Burns, host of the popular podcast, The Brutal Truth About Sales and Selling, and author of The Maverick Method: Simplifying the Complex Sale.


Brian got into sales, and soon discovered he didn’t like it, because of the high stress and the low recognition given.

Andy asks about brutal truths of sales and selling. Brian says most consultants either say to ‘work harder,’ or they offer a ‘silver bullet’ methodology; but neither answer is complete.

Brian says managers see salespeople kind of like the garbage collector. They get paid more than the fireman, but the job isn’t as clean.

Brian asks, would you get on a plane with a pilot who had studied flight, but never flown? Why get sales advice from consultants who have read studies, but never sold?

Brian calls marketing automation, spam automation. It’s important for sales reps not to forget the human who is behind the email address.

Brian says the real point of automation is to scale your activity; not to annoy people, or create meaningless activity.

Brian says, what sales managers need, is not to have more metrics, but to hire a maverick rep, who finds a new way of connecting, and engaging authentically with people.

Andy and Brian discuss qualities of the maverick sales rep.

Brian explains why deals die at the first meeting. Brian shares his maverick method to push forward stuck sales by breaking them down into the smallest steps needed to advance.


What’s your most powerful sales attribute?

My curiosity, and putting myself in the other person’s place.

Who is your sales role model?

My parents, both in sales.

What’s one book that every salesperson should read?

The Rise of Superman: Decoding the Science of Ultimate Human Performance, by Steven Kotler.

What music is on your playlist right now?

U2, AC/DC.