Otis Elevator and Escalators, a subsidiary of United Technologies Corporation, the world’s leading manufacturer, installer and maintainer of elevators, escalators, and moving walkways, has been a supporter of the Tuskegee University Business and Engineering (TUBE) Conference for many years.
During the 2009 TUBE Conference, 3M was joined by Otis Elevators to sponsor the “Technical Sales Competition.” TUBE is an annual conference planned, organized and implemented by student teams. It is organized similar to a limited purpose business and is designed to develop leadership skills in students and to share knowledge across the two disciplines of business and engineering.
The sponsored event was a technical sales competition titled “Everyone is a Professional Salesperson.” The competition consisted of five teams; each team consisted of two sales and marketing students and three engineering students. The sales and marketing (S&M) students served as instructor/coaches for the engineering students and instructed them on the art of developing a sales plan, making a sales call, and obtaining a commitment from a buyer using the techniques from their sales and marketing classes.
The engineering students used these techniques, their technical knowledge, and their understanding of the Otis Elevator product to make the sales call. Mr. Anthony Freeman, a Tuskegee employee served as the buyer. The event continues to be a success (noted by students and others) because it:
- introduced the rigors and joys of selling
- reinforced the knowledge base of S&M students who had to “teach what they knew”
- increased the exposure of competition sponsors to students in business and engineering
- enhanced the image of selling as a viable career choice for both the Engineering and Business schools
- was a challenging yet fun experience. Like last year, student commitment to the success of their team performance was outstanding and choosing a winner continues to be more difficult than ever for the judges.
Students are looking forward to this selling “workshop” during next year’s conference.