Monday, September 12, 2022

The new Inside Sales Lab gives students on-the-job sales experience and clients strong leads and a potential pipeline for emerging sales talent. Quite simply, it’s a win-win.

Clients receive an economical way to meet their need for specialized sales services like analyzing and cleaning prospect data, optimizing customer lists, and a team of motivated student interns making carefully crafted calls. Once warm leads are established, they are handed off to the client’s internal sales team.

“Our commercialization strategy is to continually expand and improve our go-to-market execution to make image-guided procedures safer,” says Robin Therme (MBA00), president of CIVCO Medical Solutions, a company partnering with the Inside Sales Lab. “Working with the Inside Sales Lab will help us expand those efforts as well as trial new sales models and techniques, while strengthening our strategic partnership with the University of Iowa.”

With its opening in spring 2022, the Inside Sales Lab is only the second of its kind in the country and was developed by Associate Dean for the Undergraduate Program Charles Keene, who started the first lab while at the University of Missouri. Another Inside Sales Lab client is Ceras Health, a Boston-based health care management company. Clients pay $15,000 to help offset overhead, including software licenses and phone charges. Internship salaries are not included. 

While in high school, Albara Khalil (BBA22) (pictured) cut his teeth in sales at Scheels in Coralville, Iowa. Now he’s building on those skills with hands-on experience in data analysis, prospecting, and a variety of sales cycle processes, industries, and markets. His internship with the Inside Sales Lab offers him not only a $15 per hour paycheck but academic credit as well.

“The experience I’m gaining is invaluable and will be a standout item on my resume,” says Khalil, who moved to the United States from Sudan while in high school and became conversant in English by the time he graduated. “I’ve had a deep dive into customer relationship management software and have honed my skills at meeting customer needs with our clients’ products.”

In the next year, the college plans to grow the Inside Sales Lab to six companies employing up to 25 student interns. It will also serve as a new resource for academic researchers to study sales techniques, consumer behavior, and other marketing phenomena.

The Inside Sales Lab is a cost-effective sales solution for start-ups to medium-size businesses.
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This article is part of the fall 2022 issue of Tippie MagazineAlumni are invited to update their contact information with the college to be placed on the mailing list for future print editions.