FCB’s Professional Selling Program Grows with Sponsorships

Posted: Saturday, January 30th 2016 at 11:14 AM

By Kelly Johnston, student writer

When NAU Business News last reported on The W. A. Franke College of Business’ professional selling program (April 2015), it was in its early stages. The marketing major’s curriculum was being revamped by adding an emphasis, “Sales and Sales Marketing.” The program will ready students for the professional field of sales.

Dean Craig Van Slyke fully endorsed the new program. “When Dr. Kevin Trainor first brought the idea of a professional selling program to me, I immediately saw the potential. Although we may not realize it, 

sales skills are among the most useful, transferable skills a business professional (or a dean!) can possess,” he said.

Matt Calvet (’13) said, “I was so skeptical taking a class about “selling” but that class...really opened my eyes to what a career in sales is all about. I had an epiphany while in class which ultimately led me to where I am today – with a career in professional sales! ”

The Emerging Program

Two new courses have been added to the curriculum, one in Sales Management, and the other in Sales Strategy and Technology, and will be offered in Fall 2016. In addition to this concentration for marketing majors, a certificate in professional selling will also be offered to non-marketing students.

A Win-Win for Corporate Partners

To-date, two companies have partnered with the professional selling program, Fastenal, a Fortune 500 industrial supplier with a strong local presence, and Nackard, a regional Pepsi bottler and wholesale distributor covering 82% of the state of Arizona. These partnerships provide both students and sponsors with valuable resources. Students enjoy professional development events and activities that enable them to connect with sales professionals, while sponsors gain access to student talent and valuable company exposure. These companies are also highlighted as an appreciated resource for the program on the Professional Selling website [HERE].

A Competitive Edge

In February 2016, FCB professional sales students will compete in the first annual Arizona Collegiate Sales Competition (ACSC) hosted by Arizona State University. Preparation for the competition will fine-tune the sales abilities of the competitors, a process now made easier by the installation of video recording technology designed to aid in sales role-play scenarios. The new sales lab was used in professional selling classes in fall 2015 and will be a valuable resource developing students’ communication skills and sales techniques.

Van Slyke sees tremendous value being added to a student’s resume. “Professional selling requires skills in listening, analyzing, problem solving, and persuasion, among others. All of these are useful in virtually any profession. Students who go through FCB’s professional selling program will have a real advantage throughout their careers, whether in sales or another profession,” he concluded.

Categories: nau business news flagstaff business news nau business news: february 2016 spring 2016 2016 professional selling program kevin trainor matt calvet fastenal nackard arizona collegiate sales competition kelly johnston