Business Administration students exploring sales management with Associate Professor John Lohmann got a master class in sales techniques Thursday with guest speaker Eric Lipsitt, president of Computrition. Lipsitt’s company works with hospitals to automate food and nutrition services, ensuring patients receive appropriate meals.
Lipsitt - who has known Professor Lohmann since their own college days - discussed the foundational importance of tracking customer relationship management and continued self-assessment. “If you don’t measure it, it doesn’t get done,” Lipsitt said. “You continually have to reassess.”
He also told the students that their educational training would not cease when they completed their degrees. “Learning doesn’t stop when you leave here,” he said. “You’re still going to go to conferences and read books.”
Describing his own career in software, Lipsitt said the crucial concept in “solution selling” is making the prospective customer aware of how their business would benefit from using the service. “You have to understand the ‘why,’” he said. “Why will my business benefit from this?”
He demonstrated by holding up his coffee mug and asked students how they would go about selling it. Merely asking a prospect if they want to buy a mug could end quickly. Instead, he said, asking a prospect if they consume hot beverages opens the door to a conversation about how to help them do so without burning their hands.
“You need to describe the problem you can help them solve, and ask them, ‘If I can show you a solution, would you be interested?’ If I can show them I have a product that can make their lives easier, then I’ve gotten their attention.”
Learn more about Fitchburg State’s undergraduate and graduate business programs here.
-Matthew J. Bruun, Director of Communications and Public Affairs