KALAMAZOO, Mich.—Western Michigan University sales and business marketing students Ryan Demas, Cooper Frost and Alex McMahon traveled to Cleveland, Ohio, in February to compete in the 2019 Quicken Loans National Sales Competition, where Demas claimed first place and $1,000.
Quicken Loans hosted 21 of the top sales competitors from across the country, representing schools such as Ohio University, Kent State, University of Ohio, Arizona State University and several others. The WMU students competed in three different rounds of competition, going through the full sales cycle that a mortgage banker would experience.
Demas advanced to the final round, where he sold onstage in front of fellow competitors as well as the leaders of Quicken Loans. The pressure was on, but Demas said his preparation in the sales and business marketing program and in the Robert S. Kaiser Sales, Negotiation and Leadership Lab helped him clinch the win.
"I was the last one to compete in the final round and had no idea what my competition had done prior to me," says Demas. "I recall eagerly awaiting the results. I never want to walk into a competition expecting to win, so I was astonished when they announced I had and felt all the preparation had been worth it."
Frost helped secure an invitation for WMU sales and business marketing students to participate in the competition, communicating with recruiters about the standout sales students in the program.
"Even though the Quicken Loans Sales Competition has an inherently individualistic structure, it was exciting to see WMU compete as a team," he says. "We prepared for the competition together, knowing that success for one of us was a win for us all. I am thrilled with Ryan's overall win at this event."
- The first round of the competition was over the phone, with competitors calling upon a client to do an identification call to assess basic needs.
- The second round was an in-person scenario where the students presented a loan option to homeowners looking to refinance their home with Quicken Loans. In this round, the goal was to close the deal with the client, addressing objections such as cost or satisfaction with a current mortgage lender.
- The final round was onstage, in front of Quicken Loans representatives. In this round, students were selling VIP suites at the Quicken Loans Arena to the CEO of StockX, a company in the Quicken Loans family of companies. Four students competed in the final round of competition. Each student had 15 minutes after getting the scenario to prepare, which leveled the playing field for all competitors.
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