Baylor to Sponsor 'Superbowl of College Selling'April 14, 1999
by Alan Hunt
Forget the door-to-door, high-pressure salesmen of Willy Loman's era. Professionals of today's diversified sales workforce have to be educated, trustworthy, and--above all--ethical in the way they treat their clients.
Baylor University marketing professor Dr. Terry W. Loe says these qualities will be essential to competitors in the first National Collegiate Sales Competition, sponsored by Baylor's Center for Professional Selling on April 23-24. "The judges will certainly be looking for these characteristics," he says.
The contest, believed to be the first of its kind in the nation, has attracted teams from nearly 20 major universities nationwide, including Central Michigan State, Houston, Arkansas-Little Rock, Purdue, Ball State, Toledo, Western Michigan, Western Carolina, South Florida, Middle Tennessee State, Illinois State, Kennesaw State, Bowling Green State and Louisville.
Loe says the contest is designed to bring together top sales students from the leading programs in the U.S. to show off their sales and communication skills. "We will have most of the finest college sales programs represented, along with prominent university professors who teach and conduct research in sales."
He adds, "We have attempted to provide a 'Final Four' or 'College World Series' format and atmosphere. The winners will have a lot to brag about because the competition will be extremely strong."
Loe is associate director of Baylor's Center for Professional Selling, one of the nation's premier information and leadership resources for college students and sales professionals. He says the contest, which will be held in the center's sales lab, will give many of today's top collegiate prospects for sales positions the opportunity to try their selling skills. They will participate in life-like role-plays with "buyers" before a panel of judges selected from sponsoring corporations.
The sponsoring firms include Office Depot, Arrow Electronics, Inc., Carlton-Bates Company, Elk Corporation, Xerox Business Services, Wilsonart International, Shaw Industries, Ericsson Inc., EDS, Wallace, and EdwardJones.
Loe says the competition will consist of two preliminary rounds in which all students will compete. In the first round, the students will sell a product (day timer planning system) and in the second round they will sell a time management seminar. Both the product and service materials are provided by a local firm, MyTyme Inc., a subsidiary of Success Motivation Institute (SMI).
The final round of the competition will include the top three scorers from the first two rounds. An awards banquet will be held at 7 p.m. Saturday, April 24, to announce the winners.
For more information about the competition, contact Loe at (254) 710-4244.