Cue the scrolling words, white on black.
“Young Huntsman Sales Rebels from across the galaxy enlist in the Sales Rebellion to overthrow the evil Sales Sith. The Sith, who because of their single-minded lust for power, money, and disdain for anything wholesome in life, use the dark side of selling to manipulate and deceive the galaxy out of their monetary wealth.
“To overcome the power of the dark side, Sales Rebels must unite and become Sales Jedi Knights using the truths of selling to eliminate the dark side, and to restore trust and order in the galaxy.”
And that’s how the training begins for the young Sales Rebels who come to Sterling Bone’s strategic sales and account management course.
"Selling a product you're not, selling the customer you must." - Sterling Bone
When he was a professor at Brigham Young University, Sterling Bone worked with Griffin Hill, a consulting firm based in Utah, to develop an academic course that trains and certifies students on what the firm calls the “Integrity Sales System.”
The approach to selling that Dr. Bone champions is not about techniques, tricks, and tactics aimed at manipulating people into buying products. Instead, he teaches the students to focus more on genuinely listening to people, identifying their needs, and then finding a way to meet those needs. In the classroom they have to model these skills in individual role-play situations and in team-selling classroom presentations.
“It forces them to do,” Dr. Bone said, echoing Yoda. “In fact, I really emphasize that. To become a Jedi, you have to do.”
Tom Goldhardt, a senior majoring in marketing, recently completed his summer internship as a sales representative at Qualtrics.
“I think his class is so effective because he genuinely cares about his students,” he said. “He doesn’t want you to come to class, go through the motions and get an ‘A.’ He truly wants to teach you how to become successful after graduation, and he’ll do whatever he can in his power to make that happen.”
Paige Sjoblom, a senior majoring in public relations and marketing, is already working in marketing and sales for JJ Cole in Logan. She was hired by a guest speaker who came to class, Jon Brenchley ‘98, senior vice president for JJ Cole.
"Do or do not, there is no try." - Yoda
“Professor Bone used every minute of class effectively,” she said. “The balance of instruction, presentation, and guest speakers resulted in the most learning possible in a seven-week course.”
Students are also offered the opportunity to take a test administered by Griffin Hill, which if passed, will make them certified in the Griffin Hill “Integrity Sales System,” a distinction that is appreciated, even by Sales Jedi.