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Shifting To Virtual And Selling Without Any Constraints – With Shari Levitin

by | Oct 13, 2020 | Podcast | 0 comments

Shari Levitin is an energetic, wickedly funny sales authority, who helps sales teams bridge the gap between beating quota and selling with an authentic, heartfelt approach.

As founder of her self-named, highly respected company, she has helped create over 1 billion dollars in increased revenue for companies in over 40 countries. She is the bestselling author of Heart and Sell: 10 Universal Truths Every Salesperson Needs to Know, which we are going to talk about today… (it’s now translated in 4 languages), and she is a contributor to Forbes, CEO Magazine, Quotable, Inc Magazine and The Huffington Post.


  • Join The Sales Revolution: If you’re ready to do sales differently, you’re in the right place. This community is for entrepreneurs and sales pros to connect, grow, + learn the new (and highly improved) connection-based way of selling. Get ready to toss out all that you’ve been taught about sales up to this point. It’s time for a revolution.


3 Value Bombs

  1. The best salespeople are not necessarily the best at talking. Instead, they are the best at listening and asking the right questions at the right time in the conversation.
  2. Don’t just chase the money in your sales profession. If you find a product that you love, the money will follow if a couple of other things are there. In addition to choosing a product around which you have conviction and passion, make sure your product solves a real problem in the marketplace.
  3. Find a qualified mentor who truly has the expertise to help you get to the next level, who can help you implement what you are learning.


VIRTUAL SALES TRAINING PROGRAM & PLATFORM: Our virtual training has helped thousands of people and companies turn-around sluggish sales. The mobile-enabled, innovative, flexible training is rooted in human behavioral psychology and provides easy-to-consume, on-demand training for sustainable results.

SALES STRUCTURE PARTNERSHIP: Accelerate your growth with a customized partnership! This partnership includes onsite coaching and role playing for skill reinforcement, 1:1 work with Jeremy Miner on your specific product or vertical scripting (aligned to the new model of selling) and coaching support and alignment for your sales managers and/or sales coaches.

Show Notes

**Click the timestamp to jump directly to that point in the episode.

Today's Audio MASTERCLASS: Heart And Sell – with Shari Levitin

4:06 Tell us a little more about your background and how you came to be known as an elite authority on sales and persuasion?

  • Started in the timeshare industry but she didn't like high-pressure sales so she got out of it. Then she got back in when Marriott started selling timeshares.
  • Shari doesn't consider herself a “born salesperson.”
  • She studied human behavior and learned from an earlier mentor that better communicators make better sales people.
  • Sales is a “life skill.” 
  • Shari would keep a little black book and she would write down patterns she would see in human behavior. She would then for distinctions.
  • She became the #1 salesperson in all of Marriott for 2 reasons:
    • She had a phenomenal mentor and after each presentation they would analyze it. You can lose the deal, but you can't lose the lesson.
    • She had an absolute passion for learning and she did not ascribe to the belief that if they don't buy today they will never buy. She became exceptional at calling people back and following-up.

7:38 The best salespeople are not necessarily the best at talking. Instead, they are the best at listening and asking the right questions at the right time in the conversation.

  • Help the prospect uncover problems they don't even know they have.
  • Get into the heart and soul of the customer and see what matters to them most.
  • Become a problem finder and a problem solver.
  • What are the potential consequences if they don't solve their problem now as opposed to down the road?
  • Most salespeople are product pushers. They are trained to ask a few surface questions that every other sales person is trained to ask.

10:26 How come one sales person can make, let's say $300,000 a year in that industry, while another is barely getting by when they're using the same “system”?

  • This is really the thesis of Shari's book that what you do matters, to quote Brene' Brown, “who you are matters more.” 
  • So when we talk about Heart And Sell, there are the 10 universal truths every salesperson needs to know. 
  • 5 of them are very tactical: How we ask questions, How we isolate objections, How we build rapport. And these things matter. They are skill sets. 
  • But who you are matters more. Authenticity today has never been more important.
  • If you are not genuinely empathic today, the customer is going to know.
  • In virtual selling, which many have been forced to pivot to this year, it's even more important than it's been in previous years.

14:08 If you were starting over today as a salesperson, what specific steps would you take to be at the very top right now?

  • #1 pick a product that you believe in and are passionate about. What matters is that you genuinely have a conviction in your product.
  • #2 choose a company where your manager can provide mentoring and coaching. People don't leave companies; people leave managers.
  • #3 In sales “no never means no.” The more rejections you can endure, the farther you are going to go in your sales career. Get yourself in the emotionally resilient state of mind.

18:01 In several of your trainings you talk about re-humanizing the sales process. What do you mean by that?

  • Information overload has impacted us all. Accessing information today is not the challenge but filtering it. 
  • To make it in sales we have to be able to do everything that Alexa can't do. 
  • CALL method – Connect, Ask, Listen, Link
  • Alexa will never be able to connect to another human the way humans connect
  • Alexa will never be able to ask questions that break past the skin, through the bone and into the heart
  • Alexa will never be able to listen not only to the words but to the emotion behind the words and get the nuances

20:31 Why should salespeople be using the CALL Method: Connect, Ask, Listen, Link?

  • According to Harvard Business Review, there are 2 things that every salesperson needs in order to create influence
    • #1 Empathy – knowing your customer
    • #2 Competency – knowing your product
    • Which one is more important? It's a trick question. They are both equally important. But here's the catch: the order does matter. We need to lead with Empathy to be successful today.
    • Empathy is the cornerstone of trust.
    • Empathy creates an environment where the prospect wants to engage.

23:49 Your company shifted to virtual presentations because of COVID-19. How are you adjusting your presentations to assure that they translate to a virtually medium, but still fully engage the person on the other end?

  • The 10 biggest mistakes salespeople make in a virtual environment. Sometimes you need to look at what not to do, in order to determine what to do.
  • There is a tendency towards laziness in default behaviors.
  • When we are virtual we automatically don't have the same level of trust.
  • There is a hormone called Oxycontin. There is a hormone that is release when we are in the same room; it's the trust hormone.
  • #1 The first mistake salespeople make is they don't get their customer to turn on the camera. So they can't see their body language.
  • Customers are 7 times more likely to buy if they can see you and hear from you.
  • You don't have to see them. That's not as critical.
  • But if you can, it's best for both sides to turn on your cameras.
  • In your confirmation, let people know it will be a video call.
  • #2 An over-reliance on technology can become a big challenge. It's not a matter of “if” but “when” there will be a problem with your technology, and you need to be prepared for it.
  •  Shari shares an embarrassing story about a technology glitch that happened in the middle of her presentation. 
  • “Ditch The Deck” – Don't be so reliant on your technology (competency) that you lose empathy and you lose the relationship.

31:29 What was the greatest challenge you experienced in pivoting to virtual as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic?

  • Finding the time to do everything required to do it right. Shari and her team listened to over 100 virtual presentations during the first week to find the pitfalls because she did not want to make it up.
  • Being humble enough to admit that maybe she needed to reach out to other people with more expertise so she could get it right. Having the humility to say who are the experts and what can I learn from them.
  • Communicating to everyone that what you did live…you can't just turn on a Zoom and repeat it virtually.
  • Ego can be one of our greatest inhibitors to success. Ego can keep you stuck in the same income for years.

34:01 What are some trends you are noticing during this shift towards virtual selling?

  • Right now 90% of all sales people are shifting towards virtual presentations.
  • It works!
  • If you don't have a strategy for selling virtually you are going to be left in the dust.
  • Win rates may not be as high, but you can reach more people.
  • Sellers will have more balance in their lives.
  • It's more economical to sell virtually.
  • Video prospecting and following up are going to become increasingly more common and effective
    • 10 times higher open rates sending a video as opposed to an email

38:01 Where can our listeners learn more about you Shari?

Linkedin www.linkedin.com/sharilevitin 

Email me shari@sharilevitin.com 

A Party Without Pants

Talk about the 10 Mistakes That Virtual Sellers Make And How To Avoid Them

But my book on Amazon and learn more about Learn more about the C.A.L.L. Method of selling. https://www.amazon.com/dp/1632650746 

Killer Resources

  1. The New Model Of Selling: Learn from Jeremy Miner The Only Friction-Free, Persuasion Sales System Guaranteed To Increase Revenue.
  2. Join The Sales Revolution: If you’re ready to do sales differently, you’re in the right place. This community is for entrepreneurs and sales pros to connect, grow, + learn the new (and highly improved) connection-based way of selling. Get ready to toss out all that you’ve been taught about sales up to this point. It’s time for a revolution.


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