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How Sales Needs to Start Learning (and Not Wait to Be Trained), with John Barrows [Episode 283]

Among the many topics John and I discuss are why sales reps have to take responsibility for their own development and why they shouldn’t wait for sales training to get better, John’s “Rule of 1%”, strategies for sales reps to improve their active listening skills, steps reps should take to elevate their demo and presentation skills and much, much more. This is a must listen episode!

Joining me on this entertaining episode of Accelerate! is John Barrows, a leading sales trainer for tech companies.


John discusses his blog post, Don’t Wait for Sales Training to Get Better, and what sales reps can do to better educate themselves.

John and Andy discusses the “Rule of 1%”, which states to “set the bar at a high, but attainable level and once you reach that bar to focus on just doing 1% better every day”.

How much time (and money) should a sales rep budget for self-improvement?

John shares practical tips on how SaaS sales reps can improve their product and service presentation demos.

How “context” vs. “content” differentiates sales from marketing.

How researching about the company and preparing advance questions can help sales reps to focus on the buyer?

John offers tips for improving and demonstrating active listening skills rather than nodding in agreement.


What’s your most powerful sales attribute?

Being very direct and transparent.

Who is your sales role model?

Jeff Hoffman.

What’s one book that every salesperson should read?

Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion, by Robert Cialdini

What music is on your playlist right now?

I’m a 90’s rap kid — Biggie, Tupac, Run DMC, Jamiroquai. I also like country, house, rap, hip hop.