0:00:05.2 West McDonald: Well, hey everybody, West McDonald and I want to thank you for tuning into another episode of TigerTube. And if you can’t see us, if you’re listening in, that means you’re listening to us in Tigerpaw Radio. So thank you very much. Don’t forget, subscribe below so you never miss another important piece of learning content. And if you like this, give us a thumbs up. I’m super excited today. The guest that we have is somebody that I’ve known for a lot of years and have been really excited to follow his career progression. And Larry Levine, welcome to the show today.
Larry Levine: West, what’s happening? I’ve been looking forward to this. Great seeing you.
WM: I know, right? It’s really good for us to have an opportunity to actually be able to work together. And you’ve actually crossed a lot of different channels. Your life has changed immeasurably in the last 10 years. So although we had a lot of opportunity to work together in the past, not so much these days because you were doing so many things and are really excited about being able to do that today. So if you can do me a favor, Larry, nobody knows you better than yourself. Maybe you could just introduce yourself for our audience.
0:01:12.0 LL: So for those of you who don’t know me, my name is Larry Levine. I spent I’ll just give you a quick backstory because I have a very good mentor of mine, West, that says you really never know someone until you know their backstory. But I’ll give you the condensed version of my backstory. So I spent almost 29 years in the Office Technology channel. In fact, West, that’s how you and I met many, many, many years ago. And it provided well, I had a phenomenal career. And then in 2015, it was time to move on. In fact, I tell people I was forced to move on because I was exited out of the copier channel. And one of those things that happened, I’ve come to grips with it, but it’s one of those things I learned going from the independent side of the Office Technology channel to the direct side of the Office Technology channel. And sometimes things just don’t work as you think they might work. And the reason why I bring this up is the only channel I ever, ever, ever sold into was the Office Technology channel. I carved a really good niche for myself selling office technology in the Los Angeles marketplace by staying true to who I was.
0:02:28.3 LL: I doubled down on it. I doubled down on marrying how I acted face to face and how I married this online. And I’m sharing this with everyone because that’s how I parlayed my next level of my career at 50 years old. And I want us to focus in on this for just a moment because we’ve all gone through transformation over the last couple years. Yes. But my transformation was forced upon me that it would have been really easy for me to go back to what I knew, which is the Office Technology channel, or I could double down and just throw all the red chips in and go to Vegas and double down on myself with the help of my with my dear wife and then West, you know, Darrell Amy. Oh, yes. They both convinced me, Larry, go out and share with people what made you you and what you did in the Office Technology channel. So I had no experience in speaking in front of people, writing, doing podcasts, book. I had nothing of that. I had no clue what I was doing, but I was willing to dive into this thing. And I dove headfirst into entrepreneurialism.
0:03:37.1 LL: And I haven’t looked back ever since we started the podcast five and a half years ago, selling from the heart came out four years ago. It’s forever changed my life. And I’m working in and around the world in various different channels, helping sales leaders and sales teams bridge the whole concept of how do I bring authenticity to the forefront? How do I bring the people skills and the relational skills to the forefront to help grow my people, grow my client base and grow my revenue?
0:04:06.0 WM: Well, and that’s one of the reasons I want to get you on today specifically. I can see the book behind you, right, as you started to do that transition. It’s an important message for everyone, I think, particularly those in the off squibbing channel looking at what the next is. Because as we all know, anyone in the off squibbing channel that thinks that they can be a pure play managed print player, any longer, pure play copier sales organizations probably kidding themselves, right? Unless you’re one of these mega dealers. So I think that those lessons that you have from how you actually transition and move into those spaces are so important. And when I saw you come out with the book Selling From the Heart, I loved what you were doing there. And it has become such a big deal. And maybe you could just share with our audience for a minute about how creating that book, about how sharing those insights have changed your life.
0:04:54.0 LL: Yeah, it’s just I never dreamed any of this would really happen. But it did in it all in a really all stemmed from the podcast. And if I could just share the quick story on this, I think it helps bring all of this to life. And I just want to preface this for all your you know, all the viewers and listeners, we all have the capability of doing this. We all do. But it’s our mindset and our willingness to double down and do something differently in order to get our message out there. And so regardless of what y’all may think, we’re all capable of doing this. And I remember I had a distinct conversation with Darrell Amy. This goes back, believe it or not, West. This was probably April, beginning of April 2017. I was really, really, really close to throwing in the towel. And going back to the Office Technology Channel, I was really, really close on this. And something inside told me don’t. My wife said you’ve come so far. Darrell said, Hey, you know what, we’re always going to be friends. We’ll figure it out. Yeah, I just want you to be happy.
0:06:02.3 LL: And I remember this conversation really well. I’m in the Bellagio Hotel with Darrell, April of 2017. I was actually getting ready to speak at a Xerox event. And we’re having coffee in the morning. And here I am sharing with Darrell. I’m a transparent guy, West, you already know this. So yeah, everyone follow up. Because this is I mean, this ties into the question that you’d asked. And what was really interesting is I’m getting ready to speak on stage. And I’m telling Darrell, I don’t know if I can do this anymore. But I said, Darrell, here’s the deal that start a podcast. It might be a way of getting the message to a broader audience, other than just the Office Technology Channel. Let’s get this message out there amongst the masses. And Darrell says, and I’m really not game for a podcast. You might have to fly on this solo. I said, No, we’re in this thing together, or we don’t do it. And he goes, Well, if we agree to do this together, what are you going to call this podcast? And I said, about 30, no more than 45 seconds later, it’s still as plain as day.
0:07:07.0 LL: It’s five and a half years now, I go, we’re gonna call this selling from the heart. And he goes, Dude, you are genius where I’m in on this. I think we got something here. The reason why I’m sharing this is I had no idea at that point in time, my life would change. Because again, never podcasted our first podcast came out April 28 2017.
0:07:29.9 LL: Horrible. It was the worst podcast. But guess what, there’s always room to become better and better and better. And it’s through disciplined habits, accountability and practice. And that’s all we did. And we just got the same going. And then I wrote selling from the heart. And the reason why I’m bringing this to the forefront is it transformed my life for one simple reason is I’m all about building community. And I want us to key in on this, especially everyone who’s watching and listening to this. It’s how you build community with your clients that will forever change your life and change your sales results. Because I’m a big alliteration freak. So I played on how I brought this to life, and how it changed my life because I doubled down on three E’s. I doubled down on educating. So I educated my marketplace. I educated our listeners, our viewers on ways that they can improve and it was all around authenticity and it was all around heart. And I was willing to talk about things that very few will publicly talk about. The second thing was engage. So once I start educating people, the next thing was, if you want to start building community, it’s about engagement.
0:08:48.7 LL: It means driving conversation with people. Now we all know in today’s society, engagement and conversation can start in many different ways. So once I started educating, now this was phone, email, social, all of this. I leveraged all mediums that were out there to start educating the masses around what it meant to sell from the heart and how you can tie authenticity and to help grow your sales. The engagement part of this was, it didn’t matter if it was social, email or phone, you got what you got with me. It’s just how I carried myself is if somebody engaged on my content, I engaged right back still to this day, seven days a week, 365 days a year, regardless of I don’t feel like it, I engage. I humanize myself and I brought myself to life. The third thing was I excited people into conversations because I leaned into this. I leaned into educating, engaging and exciting people in a conversation. It transformed the way we went to market. It transformed my life. If you would have asked me six years ago, fast forward insert today’s date and year, could you see all of this happening? I’d say, no way.
0:10:09.7 LL: But what I did is I stayed true to who I was. I stayed in my lane and I’m hitting areas in business and in sales that are sorely overlooked, sorely overlooked.
0:10:21.6 WM: Yeah, I love it, Larry. You know, there’s a couple of things there that I want to touch on that you raised. The first thing is that you just started, right? You came up with this thing, you went in headfirst and like you said, there’s always room at the beginning for improvement. But I think that’s what a lot of people fail to realize, as you said, as they hold themselves back with that mindset is they don’t just start, just do something, right? And the second part is I like how you contextualize, you know, call it the trifecta, right, of education, engagement and excitement, because it almost strikes me as a circle, an important circle because it always feeds back on itself, right? One of the things that I’ve done, you know, similar, just got me thinking about it on the engagement side and the excitement side is we have a group at Tigerpaw called the Top 100. It’s basically a list of recipients and folks that we see doing a lot of good things in the community. But it wasn’t enough just to put that out, but that engagement, we get together every week and have conversations about what’s impacting the industry, if it’s supply chain issues, if it’s diversification, you know, etc.
0:11:27.0 WM: right? And that gets me excited to hear those people talking together and sharing ideas about moving through. So, absolutely love it. And yeah, it’s really neat. I love getting that background. That really was a 45 second thing. It’s like, let’s call it selling from the heart and look where it is today. Yeah. And see, here’s what’s interesting about this.
0:11:49.9 LL: It’s rare. It is rare that I have to explain to somebody what it is. Right. It’s selling from the heart. It’s how you carry yourself, right?
0:12:01.1 LL: And so, I want to key in on something that you just said is, because we’ve been talking about this is it’s the small steps, right? It’s just, I’m a big believer that what’s forever old is forever new. It’s one of my favorite sayings, what’s forever old is forever new. And here’s what’s interesting about this. And whether you’re a sales leader, sales professional, I do know this, we can all become better. But here’s what I’m finding out is people are chasing the silver bullet. They’re trying to chase a quick tip, a hack, a trick that will propel them to wherever they would like to go. In other words, whatever their definition of success is, they just want the quick tip, the hack, the trick with minimal amount of work. So real quick, can I share a story? Please. And this is why I’m a big believer that what’s forever old is forever new. So I want everyone to key in on this. I’m a big Napoleon Hill freak. Now, some people like him. Other people think he was a whack job, but nevertheless, right? The reason why I bring this up is I was challenged by somebody earlier this year to read the book Three Feet from Gold.
0:13:10.6 LL: It was written by Sharon Lector and Dr. Greg Reed. I believe that Three Feet from Gold is today’s modern version of Think and Grow Rich. As I read that, it’s like I got somebody just like slapped me across the face. And I started to go deep into Napoleon Hill books. And the reason why I’m bringing this up, when we talk about transformation, transformation occurs from the inside out. I want everyone to think about that, especially whether you’re in sales, you’re a sales professional, or you’re a sales leader. We’re chasing all the outer stuff. But if you really want to transform, you got to start from the inside. So here’s the deal. So I get introduced after that book, I go deep into Napoleon Hill. I pick up a book called Mental Dynamite. And Mental Dynamite was brought to the forefront by the Napoleon Hill Foundation and the executive director is a guy by the name of Don Green. They brought this book to life maybe two or three years ago, tops. And the reason why I bring this up is this is a conversation between Napoleon Hill and Andrew Carnegie. Oh, that occurred in 1908. Wow.
0:14:20.6 LL: So I want everyone to think about this, that when I say what’s forever old is forever new, and I want to pin on this, is in 1908 Napoleon Hill gets the opportunity. Napoleon Hill is a struggling magazine writer, just struggling, but he has the opportunity to meet Andrew Carnegie in his mansion in New York City. Now, in 1908, Andrew Carnegie is the wealthiest person in the world. Because in 1901 he had sold Carnegie steel to JP Morgan, which today we know JP Morgan is JP Morgan Chase, right? And so he sells his company for check this out $480 million dollars in 1908 in 1901. So 1901. So I mean, all you all you guys have to do is just go to Google and convert that today’s dollars. And that’s a boatload of dollars. But there’s, there’s a reason why I’m bringing this up. Napoleon Hill has the opportunity to sit down with Andrew Carnegie, and he just thought this was going to be like a 20 minute conversation. It turned out to be well over two hours, which turned they and the whole conversation, the whole transcript behind this is in mental dynamite, y’all can go get the book if you choose to read the book.
0:15:34.1 LL: And he asks Andrew Carnegie in the very beginning, what made him so successful? Keying on this because it was it’s so simple, but yet so difficult. Andrew Carnegie said the key to my success has been twofold. It’s been the combination of self discipline and constructive habits. People that simple. So when the reason why I bring this up is when I was exited out of the copier channel, I just went back to what I was doing in the copier channel and how I built my business. And it’s how I constructed selling from the heart. All I did was bring massive amounts of self discipline and personal accountability to the forefront. And here at selling from the heart, we call it discipline habits. It’s not constructive habits, but y’all get where I’m going with this. Yeah. The key to success is not that hard, yet it is hard. Hold yourself accountable, create massive amounts of self discipline, consistently do the right things right and be habitual about it. But here’s the thing is when we lack all of that, we chase all the outer success and nothing happens.
0:16:49.6 WM: Yes. And you hit on something there. This is going through my brain now, like a brush fire, which is this idea that lessons from the early 1900s during a book that just came out a few years ago and how those lessons resonate. And like you, I like some of those expressions which are universally true. In other words, if we fail to learn from the lessons of the past, we’re doomed to repeat them. And what it’s saying is the opposite for opportunities that we’re still human beings. That what makes us human, how we interact with each other, how we get things done, that hasn’t changed. So yeah, I absolutely love that lesson. And this idea that you’re talking about where the discipline is very hard and developing those habits, that does come from within. I think that’s probably the hardest part of that message is it has to start here. And like you said, the cover of your book says it all, it’s selling from the heart. If you’re going to start here, that’s where the work has to begin. That’s where all of the effort has to come from.
0:17:55.3 LL: Yeah. I’m just a big believer that the inner work you do fuels the outer success you’ll have. The hardest work anybody will do is the journey they take to their heart. And now some of you all might be going, well, this is mushy, gushy stuff. Well, guess what? It is. But if you can’t connect to yourself, if you can’t understand or willing to go down the road of what makes you tick, check this out. I’m a firm believer that you will fail to connect and relate to your clients and your future clients when you’re out there trying to grow your business and grow the awareness of what you do out in the marketplace.
0:18:33.5 LL: Because they are people. Well, okay. Okay. So here’s, okay. I got to go on a tangent for a second about people. So here’s this, because we all use them. We all use them. These two phrases are going to be, are used now. They were used years ago, decades ago. They’re going to be used well after we’re off the face of the earth. But you just triggered something. You said people west. How many times have we heard this? People do business with people. We use it. Do we use it all the time? Yes. Right. You use it. I’ve used it. Everybody uses it. Right. Here’s the, here’s the other one. People do business with people they know, like, and trust. We use that one all the time. So here’s what I’m going to submit to everyone who’s listening or watching this. If you combine to those two phrases, which I know y’all do, then what are you doing to double down on your people skills and your relationship building skills? And if you have a hard time thinking about that, then I’d ask you to think about it because it’s the people skills and the relationship building skills that’s going to propel you forward.
0:19:40.4 LL: It’s what brings those two phrases to life.
0:19:43.2 WM: I don’t think it’s mushy at all. And it just got me thinking of another, you know, kind of personal, personal parallel, right? Is that, you know, if you want to marry somebody, right, you don’t just get into your head that you’re going to find a hack or a shortcut or anything else. You don’t just find somebody online and say, that’s the person I’m going to marry. What’s the hack to be able to do that? No, you put in the hard work. You actually have a relationship. You figure out if it’s going to work. You have the communication. It takes a long time to finally get to that, you know, that goal, right? It takes hard work. And why should any major transaction business wise or anything else feel any different at all requires that work, right? That personal attention to who those people are and what they’re looking for, right? What they need.
0:20:23.3 LL: Yeah. You know, and this is why I pushed, I really pushed this out into the sales world. And you bring up some about, you know, personal relationships is I believe that business is personal. Yeah. Some people may call me nuts and I’ve been called worse, but I am a big, big proponent. The business is personal.
0:20:45.9 WM: I think it should be. It is personal.
0:20:50.0 LL: And here’s why I’m just going to use this phrase because everyone’s heard it in sales before. I’ve heard it. You’ve heard it. Everyone’s heard it. If you’ve been in it for any length of time, especially when you’re on the losing end of a deal and somebody will let you down based on this. Now I’m keeping it simple for our time together, but I think everybody who’s watching or listening is going to smell what I’m cooking here in a second. They may say something like this. I’ll just use, I’ll use my name as the example. They may let me down and say, Hey Larry, you know, I really appreciate all the effort that you put into this, right? I appreciate your ideas. I appreciate your recommendations, but please don’t take this personal. We decided to do business with West McDonald over at ABC company, right? How can I not take that personal? We’re human beings. We take that personal. What I submit to everybody out there, whether you’re a sales leader or sales professional, the more personal you make it, the better off you will be. Business is personal. It’s about building genuine, authentic relationships and combining that with meaningful business value. It’s people want you to know them. They want you to care about them and they want you to give a rip about them.
0:22:00.3 WM: This is a lesson I try and pass off to my children, right? That they’re getting to the age now where my son is in his third year of university. My daughter is getting into the work world with her high school part-time job and to let them know that yes, it is important to who you know. One of the first things you do when you’re young or you think you can go it alone is that I can do this on my own. I don’t need people to help me to do this. What you just said there about making it personal is why it’s important. In other words, the people that you know, the circle that you have around you, that network of people in your business world, they’re important because they help define who you are, right? The kind of people you surround yourself, the kinds of things that you present to your customers that really defines who you are and I love that, right? Let me ask you this. I’m just going to push in another direction.
0:23:01.9 WM: That’s fine. There is another way to do business and it’s win at any cost. Forget the personal, forget the whatever. If you have to go after a deal and you have to do it in a shady way or you have to kind of what’s the expression? It’s one that I despise. They say that you can bend the branch as long as you don’t break it, right? In other words, kind of focusing on versions of the truth. I don’t think that selling from the heart or having a personal touch with your customers allows for that, right? If you promote a more authentic selling style, can you share a couple of ideas about how people can do that and to be more authentic? Here’s a couple of things. I’m going to touch on that, but I will tell you this, this win at all costs, I don’t buy into it because it’s, I mean, if you want to use the phrase win at all cost, I’d say win at all cost without losing your integrity. Stop and think about that for a second. I’m a big proponent. Integrity will keep you at the top. The minute you waver from integrity, you’re an empty suit.
0:24:17.9 LL: And I will go toe to toe with anybody on this, but here’s the deal. We’re all authentic human beings, West. We are, but authenticity is a lifestyle. It’s not a light switch, right? You got to be congruent in my business coach. We go deep into this, massively deep. We get in deep discussions around authenticity and he’s helped me sum it up in one word. Authenticity is about being congruent. Does the walk match the talk? But here’s what’s interesting. And I heard this a couple years ago and it was, I’m a big fan of a gentleman named Darren Hardy. And I subscribed to his emails. I get them on a fairly consistent, regular basis. And this goes back, I’m going to say, it’s been well over a year ago, West. And he said something profound. He goes, I believe now this is, I’m paraphrasing, but he goes, I believe in today’s world, it’s easier to be inauthentic than it is to be authentic. However, when you’re your authentic self, you have no competition. I talked about it in selling from the heart. In today’s world, there’s a sixth sense that everybody has. Now we all know there’s the five senses.
0:25:45.3 LL: We all grew up and we’re taught these in school. The sixth sense that everybody has, and it’s sky high right now, is called bull crap. There’s a bull crap sixth sense we all have out there. And people that sense it, people are skeptical. There’s lack of trust. They don’t think salespeople are trustworthy. They’re skeptical about everything they have to say, and they don’t think they’re credible. What I want everyone to think about is if we can keep in the back of our minds, especially this win at all cost mentality, is we’re already behind the eight ball, using that phrase, entering every conversation that we have. Perceptions reality. So I want us to think about this. You can control what you can control. You can’t control what you can’t control. I can control how I show up. I can control how I carry myself. I can control how I interact with people. I will, and I still to this day, West, I will not waver from my integrity in order to get a deal. There has to be a complete people to really key in on this. If you really want to grow your sales is there has to be a complete alignment of values.
0:27:08.5 LL: In other words, my values and my values at selling from the heart have to align with the people that I’d like to do business with their values and their company’s values. When those alignments happen, harmony happens. And when harmony happens, conversations start to flourish. When conversations start to flourish, you really start understanding what’s going on. Yeah, there are three. And if they don’t mesh, it’s not the right fit.And I move on.
WM: I love it. So the notes that I took here is that when you talk about the authentic self, right, that there are three components to the authentic self. You have to be able to understand what you’re talking about, what you’re saying about the authentic self, right? That there are three components there that always have to be considered and are so important. What you say about being congruent, making sure that your talk matches your walk. The second thing about leading with integrity, if you do that, then you’re going to be congruent, right? And the third thing is values. As long as you understand what those values are and that you’re following them, I just absolutely love it. Yeah. And I think I’ve never, I mean, maybe it’s a little less focused on winning, I would say, than necessarily in the US. But this idea that there is no such thing as at all costs, right? Because it costs somewhere. It may cost you. It may cost your customer. It may cost a professional relationship. There’s always a cost, right?
0:28:33.1 LL: Wow. Well, you know, so think about this. When you have this win at all cost mentality, I’m not here to disrespect anyone who has it, right? We can all choose how we care ourselves, right? That’s okay. It’s no big deal. But this win at all cost mentality, something’s bound to happen. It may not happen right then and there. Rest assured, something is going to happen. Yes. And when it happens, how y’all going to react to it? That person may not even be around anymore.
0:29:06.5 WM: Yeah. Stop and think about that one for a second. Well, I’ll give you an example, Larry. Actually, somebody that I worked with through a volunteer organization many, many years ago, they actually went off and started doing their own thing. And they’ve decided to come back into the technology space, right? And they asked me, you know, we haven’t spoken in probably three years. They asked me this, you know, is there anyone you think that I should, you know, talk to? And right off the top of my head, I was like, I’m going to introduce you to five companies right now because of that authentic self that I knew that I could put my name behind it because of the fact that they were authentic, that I knew they had integrity, right? That there was no question about that. And so, like you said, there’s always something, there’s a cost, but there’s also an opportunity if you carry that authenticity, which is what I’ve always loved about what you’re promoting in the world, right?
0:30:00.5 LL: Yeah, no, I appreciate it. And even when I, you know, I look back at all my decades in the office technology channel, and this was something that I held myself to higher standards than I believe many people out there is what always would go through my head, regardless of who I was speaking with, I would say this mentally to myself, and I’m going to use your name is just as the example, I would just say, you know, this is all mental talk that I would have with myself is the more comfortable that I make West, right? The more comfortable I make West feel about me, Larry, the more comfortable West is going to become, the more comfortable West becomes, the more likelihood he’s going to start opening up to me, and he’s going to start sharing things about himself in his business that he is not sharing with another salesperson. As simple as that may sound, it is so difficult. So difficult. This is the human and the people side of things that so many in sales struggle with because they make it about their product, they make it about their company, it’s all about me and all that.
0:31:11.1 LL: There’s comes a certain point in time where you’re going to have to rope that into it. But in the very beginning is do you know me? Do you care about me? Are you going to give a rip about me? And do you trust me? And okay, now this opens up a whole nother avenue. Think about where trust and credibility sits right now in the sales world. It is at anemic Lee low levels worldwide. This isn’t a US this isn’t a Canadian thing or a European thing. Or if you’re in the APAC region, it’s not a it’s it’s a worldwide issue going on right now with salespeople. Regardless of the study, insert name of any research company, you’re going to see year over year salespeople rank at the bottom when it comes to trust and credibility, one notch above politicians, and rightfully so. But that’s a whole nother conversation. But here’s what’s interesting. And I’m glad you brought this up about trust. But if you look at any of those surveys, the two most trustworthy professions out there, year over year are doctors and nurses and the jockey for positions one and two. Wow. So nurses now are starting to rank just a smidge above doctors.
0:32:25.0 LL: Here’s what’s interesting about this. And the reason being is nurses lead with empathy, and they lead with their heart. Here’s my challenge to salespeople out there. What would it mean? If you led with empathy and heart, knowing where trust is at in in it selling from the heart, we’re all about how do you build trust and credibility by leveraging selling from the heart? And it’s a real simple equation. West, have you just allowed me to share this? Yeah. It’s and it’s also the premise of my next book that I’m almost done writing. It’s it’s all if you want to build trust and credibility. And if you want to get to somebody’s heart, it’s around four things. It’s a simple math equation. And I keep it simple because I stunk at math. It’s, it’s a our authentic relationships plus meaningful value. So a R plus MV, we call this two sides of the trust coin. You got to build authentic relationships. This is who you know. The meaningful value part of this is what you know, you have to have both of these, they have to be present. Now the accelerators on this are IE inspirational experiences and disciplined habits, DH, very simple equation, AR plus MV times IE times DH.
0:33:50.8 LL: That’s how you build trust and credibility. And there’s two sides of the trust coin. And it’s the first two. And I want everyone to key in on this for just a moment because it plays out. I see it all across the world as I work with sales people all over the place. The authentic relationships part of this salespeople get caught in the I want to be friends and I want to be like to trap all the time. You can build all the friendships in the world. If you struggle to bring meaningful business value to the forefront West, you’re going to have a lot of friends and you’re broke. Now, conversely, if you’re a really smart salesperson who educates, who brings insights into their clients, into meetings and things like that, but you struggle to build genuine authentic relationships, you’re going to be a really smart person with a weak sales funnel. You need to have both of these. And especially where trust and credibility is really low. Would I be keen in on whether I’m a sales leader or I’m a sales professional is how fast can I build trust and credibility? If you can build trust and credibility right up front in meetings, watch what starts happening to the relationship part of this.
0:35:10.9 LL: But too many sales and I’m a high relationship guy, West, massive relationship guy. But in the very beginning of a conversation with somebody, they don’t know you. They may not like you. They certainly don’t trust you. So what can you do in that very first conversation with somebody that changes the paradigm, changes the narrative in their head that said, you know what? This person is credible. They seem trustworthy. I can open up to this person. They’re worthy of having a business conversation with. And more importantly, they’re worthy of me sharing what’s going on inside my company. And that does not happen until you build trust and credibility.
0:35:55.3 WM: I love it. And it’s kind of a yin yang that I’m picturing my mind, right? That it’s this complete balance of that authenticity, that trustworthiness with the value that you can bring them. And I think you raised something there that I’m a big believer in, which is asking them questions about their organization, what’s important to them, right? Genuinely, trying to help them solve some of their business problems. And I have had situations in the past where I’ve seen good sales reps actually say, you know what? After talking to you today, I don’t think I can help you. Like having that genuine response. And wow, just amazing. I do it. I did it all the time.
0:36:36.5 LL: I did it all the time in the Office Technology Channel. I do it all the time right now. I would wrap it in this and this goes back to and I write about it in selling from the heart. And it’s really simple stuff. But yet it’s so difficult. I share with people if you want to have an ever flowing sales funnel, you must build an ever flowing relationship funnel. One goes right into the other. Just think of it as a big crazy eight. They all enter they all they all flow into each other. But here’s here’s what happens. Weak sales funnel cause salespeople to do things they normally wouldn’t do if their sales funnel was full. It goes back to self discipline. Right? Goes back to self discipline and disciplined habits, this personal accountability, I will make certain things of what I what I do every single day non negotiable. Yes. Every single day, every and still to this day, I hold myself to this. Every single day, I prospect, I connect, I engage in conversations. I’m building in my relationship funnel that drives and fuels our sales funnel here at selling from the heart. It’s simple stuff, but you got to be willing to do it every single day. These are non negotiable things that many in sales negotiate themselves right out of.
0:37:52.6 WM: Well, I absolutely love it. And it’s such an important message and in respect to both your time and that of our listeners and viewers, we could go on and on and on.This is an absolute solid gold brother. I’ve been looking forward to this interview. And I think it’s so important for every sales rep out there, not just the sales reps, but the organizations that hire them to pay attention to these lessons. And we’re at that point in the show now, or I’m going to ask you, I call it the impossible question. And if you if you had one piece of advice for people to really start selling more authentically, what would that be?
0:38:28.4 S2: I would say this because I wish I would have uncovered this decades ago. Go find a coach and a mentor that can help pull this out of you. And I’m only saying this because I walked right through it. I’ve learned more about myself in my 50s than I did in my 20s, 30s and 40s combined, because I was willing to go down that road. There’s too many people out there that throw the word authenticity around that have no clue what it means. In order to talk about your being your authentic self, you got to know who you are. You got to know why you do the things you do, how you do the things you do. And stop and think about that until you can unpack this. It’s a struggle. But if you want to really unpack all this stuff, go find a coach, go find a mentor, go find somebody close to your life coach, somebody like that that you can work with that can help you with this stuff.
0:39:31.0 S1: I love it. Yeah. And this idea of mentorship, that’s my favorite thing in the world is learning from people that I admire. So appreciate that one piece of advice. And hey, listen, for all of our viewers and all of the listeners out there, I want to thank you for tuning into another important episode. And until next time, keep learning.