See what manufacturers say about reps that have gone through the CPMR program. You can also see what CPMR Candidates think about the program. Read on to hear about our "Back On Campus" program called CPMR 401 for alumni to come back and refresh their memories. Last, but certainly not least, read about the benefits of CPMR study teams that become a sounding board for your firm.
CPMR is a program that I would recommend to anybody and everybody that wants to improve their business. The CPMR program gives you the opportunity to learn more about the rep business from other successful reps. The study teams are one of the most unique parts of this program. It is great to be a part of a study group and learn how other industries work and what other reps have tried, both successfully and unsuccessfully. Everyone is always looking to get better and what better way to learn then to rely on the experience of other reps. Also, the CPMR program teaches you how to run your business more efficiently. When you finish the program, you know more about your business than ever before. You will learn things about insurance, legal issues, marketing, technology, leadership, communication, profitability and the list goes on. Based on the CPMR program, I have been able to improve my business in so many different ways. For that reason, I would recommend the CPMR program to all reps. MAFSI will benefit greatly by having more reps that have gone through the CPMR program.
James Mathis CPMR, CFSP - Equipment Preference Inc.
I enjoyed the sessions taught by Scott Lindberg. His quick Excel tutorial motivated me to finally learn, and then use, pivot tables. I have even set up spreadsheets for some of my customers. They save a lot of time by using them and it has added to our relationship. They even take my phone calls more readily.
Miles McSweeney, CPMR Candidate - Power Sales
I have to tell you CPMR was a fantastic experience, well run, great courses and instructors, as well as an accommodating staff. The venue was perfect! The whole experience top to bottom exceedingly surpassed my expectations!
I am already using some of my experiences from the courses and the Best Practices shared by others in the class and Study Group. I really am excited and look forward to next Year 201.
Thank you and all who helped make this a wonderful & unique Experience.
Kyle Brendefur, CSP, CPMR Candidate - Lesco, Inc
I really enjoyed CPMR and feel that it was extremely valuable to me as a regional sales manager.
Jim Moore, CPMR - Samson Corporation (2013)
My CPMR study team, the CPMR F.L.I.E.R.S., says Michael Pass's session on the 9 cell matrix was universally lauded as first class and extremely useful.
Rob Whitehead CPMR Candidate - Ewing-Foley
I want to take some time to share with you my experience going through the Certified Professional Manufacturers Representative (CPMR) 3-year course. It has been extremely valuable not just to TD Marketing, but to my manufacturers businesses as well. (see his full comment by clicking here)
Frank Doyle, CPMR - TD Marketing (2013)
I look forward to completing CPMR this year. So far the experience has been great and I have used so much of what I have learned. Thanks again.
Frank Doyle, CPMR 301 Candidate - TD Marketing (2012)
While there are many trade specific certification programs, CSP & CPMR have proven to be generalized enough as a cross-platform, non-trade specific sales training & business management resource, that I would recommend them to any manufacturer's rep; regardless of industry. My thoughts on:
- CSP –
- An intricate but easy to understand definition of the sales cycle that can be utilized in an overlay fashion regardless of trade or industry.
- A templete for territory and market development
- Tools for time management as defined by ROTI (Return On Time Invested)
- Tips on negotiation skills
- CPMR -
- A comprehensive review of owning and/or managing a sales agency
- MRERF's website has the best description for what it is, click here
- I would only add that the course is very intense, and that those attending CPMR should already have a firm grasp for what it takes to run their business.
I would recommend that you attend the CSP course – it's a great place to start. You wont regret it, no matter what your role is in your sales agency.
Will Maddux, CPMR, CSP - Maddux and Associates, Inc
I am using my CPMR education everyday in our rep firm! Thank you!
Chuck Waychoff, CPMR - Adhesive Brokers
I'm grateful for having to do case study - 9-cell I hated and now I love.
CPMR 301 Survey Comment 2012
Great class this year. I have already put into action some things I learned from the presentations [May 2012]. I look forward to CPMR 301 in 2013.
Frank Doyle, CPMR Candidate - TD Marketing
In addition to the talented presenters, I want to congratulate you and the team on the logistical support of the class. The team's organizational skills helped make the week's activities a success.
Michael Pennington, CPMR Candidate - Ryall Group (2012)
Excellent job in organizing the new venue this year. I liked being in a University setting because we had close proximity to the meeting rooms and lunch! Made the week easy...but I suppose I could have used more exercise after those delicious lunches!
David Walker, CPMR Candidate - Encore Sales and Marketing (2012)
I passed the “LC” (Lighting Certified) exam. I submitted the online form for the continuing education covering the 20 hours of education I took at Philips’ headquarters to prepare for this four hour exam.
I can now list the letters “LC” behind my name, too. The CPMR training I received was a factor in motivating me to get this certification. I have come to realize the importance of ongoing education in our business.
I would encourage anyone in sales to develop a continuing education program and follow it as it relates to their business.
Bob Trate - CPMR, LC - VP End User Sales - Biben Sales Corporation
Tony and I feel very strongly that we represent top quality manufacturers, and they should expect top quality representation. The MRERF programs offer us the opportunity to have our people trained and carry the professional designation of CSP or CPMR.
Larry Benner, CPMR - Rouzer Sales Company, Inc.
I recommend CPMR to my rep colleagues in Hawaii, it was an experience that was worth the investment. Aloha.
Dex Nagaji, CPMR - Crown Sales, Honolulu
I believe strongly in CPMR and CSP. And I support both programs as there is no other training for manufacturers representatives. I run my company on the principles I learned in CPMR. All my employees need to understand my business as CPMR teaches it, so they all attend.
Ashwin Kalia, CPMR - Chaparral Technologies
After the class, most of us came to the realization that learning (professional development) is fun and we don’t know as much as we thought we did prior to the classes. We all agreed that we need to take the time to open our minds to learn and reflect on experiences to become more profitable. We also realize the need to sharpen ourselves as manufacturer’s reps so that we can enrich our manufacturer relationships. The MRERF CPMR class has started us off in that direction.
David Tonsberg, CPMR Candidate - Security Reps (2011)
CPMR 101 was a very positive experience. Our assigned study team has scheduled quarterly conference calls to discuss practices learned at CPMR as well as swap ideas. I am looking forward to progressing with CPMR over the next two years as well as growing the relationships with my study team.
Joshua W. Gorman, CPMR Candidate - Gorman Company (2011)
I really enjoyed my CPMR experience. My study team is great! We studied together during the course and compared notes on our individual businesses regarding challenges, what works well, what doesn't etc. We have scheduled quarterly webinar's to keep ourselves on track with our goals we each set during CPMR. I am looking forward to next year!
Mike Hodges, CPMR Candidate – Adanac Sales (2011)
I loved my CPMR experience and work on my CPMR to do list daily. Our study team has scheduled conference calls…great group of guys…we call ourselves the “Future Five”.
Mark Petro, CPMR Candidate - R&R Marketing Consultants Inc (2011)
The CPMR Class was quite helpful. I am really glad I attended and I look forward to the next phase.
Glen Cogswell, CPMR Candidate – Red Mountain Sales (2011)
I just wanted to send you a quick “thank you” and “well done” with CPMR 201. I've been to many conferences and there usually is a glitch in the system somewhere along the line. Not last week! Everything went smoothly and efficiently. We were very well taken care of and, of course, the sessions were outstanding. I’m already looking forward to next year and earning my certification!
Joe Anderson, CPMR Candidate - Woolsey Associates (2011)
The information was timely in a number of ways as our business is growing. We are trying to do so with better decisions and profitability in mind, more so than before. I am looking forward to the next session since the first was a good eye opener to the resources available or, where to go to find them.
John Mackenroth, CPMR Candidate - Industrial Component Sales, Inc. (2011)
I got my CPMR in January 2009. I think it is well worth both the time and monetary investment.
Larry Weber, CPMR - The Sales Group (2010)
I have decided it is time to retire. My CPMR training was wonderful and I have been proud to display the CPMR after my name and recommend it to anyone where the situation is appropriate. Thanks for all of the support over the years.
Ralph D. Logerwell, CPMR (retired) - WoodH2O (2010)
CPMR really is an eye opening experience, especially to those that may be newer to their industry. They can soak it up better than those that have been around for a long time and are set in their ways. Having said that, I know that there have been reps that have been around for a long time that have got a lot out of this program.
My absolute favorite part of the study team was learning about how reps in other industries handle the same problems that I have to handle being in PTRA or MANA. The solutions for them are different thanf my thinking and it has helped me to negotiate new contracts and additions that I normally would not have thought of. This has also helped me to evaluate some of my lines to see if it was actually worth still representing them.
Adam Cooler, CPMR - J.W. Cooler Company (2010)
I want to thank the entire organization of MRERF, the distinguished professors, and hosts at ASU for my wonderful three years of attending CPMR classes. I speak for many of us at Elkay in saying that we looked forward to this every year and thoroughly enjoyed our time and classes with you all. Most importantly, I am a better business person because of this experience, particularly in the areas of strategic development and financial analysis.
Mike Purcell, CPMR - Elkay (2010)
I am very honored to be one of only 37 people with the double designation.
Scott Catanzarite, CPMR, CSP - Group 4 Retail Equipment (2010)
What a great class. This year’s curriculum brought a lot of things together for me and gave me more than a few things to take back here and try and implement.
Brian Rodeno, CPMR - Marshall-Rodeno (2010)
The Friday I returned from CPMR, my boss announced that we are investigating a new line. I told him CPMR gave me a new formula that can help determine if a line is a good match for us, and he agreed to let me participate in the decision making process. I am already gathering critical information so I can peform a 9 cell study. Thanks for the tools that I can put right to work!
Rob Ellis, CPMR Candidate - Rettig Engineering (2010)
I can't tell you how much fun and how stimulating the past three years have been. CPMR is a terrific investment, filled with talented people and exceptionally well organized. It is bittersweet to graduate. I wanted to thank you and the entire staff for all of your hard work and planning that you devote to the program. Great job!
Peter Gould, CPMR - The Gould Company (2010)
Thank you so much for all the hard work the MRERF team puts into this program. It is almost overwhelming the information and ideas that I came back with this year. I definitely got some tools this year that I can use to get my company to the professional level that I am looking for. I just need to remember to “slow down to speed up”.
Jim Modjeski, CPMR CSP - Titan Marketing Solutions (2010)
Thank you for a very productive and professional week with CPMR!
Tom Campbell, CPMR - Campbell Equipment Company (2010)
I loved the CPMR classes. They were very informative and insightful.
Mike Ficker, CPMR - Ewing Foley (2009)
Extremely valuable and exceeded my expectations. Somehow we need to get more manufacturers supporting this program.
Lori Mele, CPMR - PLM and Associates LLC (2009)
I anticipated lofty academic theories with little practical application. In fact, I was very pleasantly surprised to find the course full of down-to-earth, practical knowledge that our firm can put to use immediately. Kudos to CPMR!
Brian Soderholm, CPMR - Solderholm & Associates (2009)
Both owners of Applied Motion Solutions are CPMR graduates. One of our goals was to have our sales staff CSP Certified in 2009, completely paid for by our firm.
One of our salespeople attended the three day session in Philly and we see a noticeable change. More confident, communicating better both internally and externally, and new business opportunities are solid. Many of our sales take years to close based on the upfront engineering but we know this investment will pay dividends very soon.
We met our goal of having our whole firm will be CPMR or CSP certified in October! I would be happy to be contacted if anyone has questions regarding the benefits of either CPMR or CSP. Thanks for making our industry more professional!
Peter Oppici, CPMR - Applied Motion Solutions (2009)
CPMR has provided me a more global understanding of the Rep business. I am able to focus on the important aspects of our business and make more informed decisions. Adding the CSP designation brought structure to what we do as a Rep firm. I have 8 others in the company that are CSP designees and I am also able to help them identify solutions utilizing their education. Dual certification in today’s business environment is of tremendous value.
Kevin Adams, CPMR, CSP - Shaffer & Nelson (2008)
The training was outstanding. I really enjoyed the course.
Brent Romaneschi, CPMR - Encore Sales & Marketing (2009)
It is critical that we spread the word about the important work we are all doing to separate what we bring to the table, from the non-CPMR’s in the industry.
Scott C. Shannon, CPMR - SOURCE ONE SALES, CORP. (2009)
I believe the CPMR program will enhance our firm and help us to focus on becoming more strategic. It will be interesting to see the differences and results 3 years from now. Look forward to 201.
Morris "Bull" Kay, CPMR - Coleman-Russell & Associates (2009)
CPMR was definitely worthwhile for me, but only if I take what I have learned and apply to my business. My only regret is that I did not get going with your program earlier in my career. I do plan on having both of my junior business partners attend.
Joe Quinn, CPMR – Grissinger Johnson Sales (2009)
For me, CPMR was a great experience. I picked up a lot of new ideas that I have already been able to bring back and implement here at Wallace. It is helpful having people who understand the rep business to share ideas and best practices with.
The only suggestion I have is to better divide the women among the study teams. I like my team and we all get along well, but as you know it is nice to have another woman’s perspective on issues we are facing each day. The women have a lot to offer in the area of advice and ideas and I feel it would be beneficial to disperse that knowledge among the whole class. All too often as we attend industry events we are one of a handful of women in attendance (from my experience, many times I am the only one).
Thanks again for all you did to make CPMR a good experience and I look forward to next year!
Holly Myers, CPMR - Wallace Electronic Sales (2009)
I thought the course was very valuable to my business.
Todd Anderson, CPMR CFSP II - North Star Agency (2009)
As usual you guys did a wonderful job on the organization and execution of the CPMR program.
It is always a pleasure to participate in events that MRERF has worked on.
My take away's were plentiful this year. Doug Austrom was on target as usual; my two other favorites were Scott Lindberg's and Steve Epner's sessions. There was ample information from everyone though.
And of course the best part is the interaction with all the other Reps.
Please thank everyone at MRERF for all of their hard work.
Bob Evans, CPMR - EK Reps
Great experience! I gained more information at CPMR 101 then any other seminar I have attended. What I learned here I immediately incorporated into my rep agency and the benefits will follow! I have two sons that will be taking my business over. I can assure you that they will both attend this program.
Dan Brandel, CPMR - D.P. Brandel Company
As the sales role has evolved from the "3 martini lunch and golf outing days" into a more "partner oriented / well rounded business person who happens to know how to sell", programs such as CPMR are more important than ever before...CPMR is a micro look with items that are applicable to everyone in the room...CPMR is the "smart person's MBA that can be used immediately in their business". In today's business climate, with an emphasis on immediate return on investment (ROI), isn't that what every company wants and tries to achieve? (full testimonial can be found here) David G Miller, (Freshly Minted) CPMR - Whit Com Sales, Inc.
I thoroughly enjoyed the class & met some truly great folks. I believe that the CPMR Program will definitely enhance my career. Robert B. Muller, Jr., CPMR - Muller Technology Group, Inc
I had a great experience at CPMR class. I thought the presenters were very good and I learned a lot. We have two other employees in our company who are already CPMR certified and we possibly may send more as we think it is a valuable class. See you next year!Matt Ruby, CPMR - Finn Marketing
Thanks for another great year. Sleiman Zogheib, CPMR, CSP, LEED
- Lighting Dynamics, Inc.
I was very pleased with the overall CPMR 101 program structure, instructors and I look forward to attending CPMR 201 next January. Randy Ferentchak, CSP, CPMR Candidate - Technical Marketing Inc
I just wanted to write you a quick note to express that taking the CPMR classes has positively affected not only me as a Professional Manufacturers Representative, but also directly impacted my company overall.
The information that I have learned was put to immediate use at all levels of my company, and has had a direct impact on the continued growth of our company, and the principals we represent.
I HIGHLY recommend that anyone that is looking to take their skills to the highest level possible should invest in this program not only for themselves, but for their long term future in this profession.
TRULY a rewarding experience, and very much appreciated!
Scott C. Shannon, CPMR - Source One Sales, Corp (2008)
CPMR and CSP are extremely well run and taught by highly skilled instructors that bring real world experience into the classroom. CPMR provides the platform and skills needed to run and manage a rep agency (line profitability, personnel management, technology, tax concerns, and benefit issues to name a few). CSP provides a proven road map through the sales process that allows me to be successful in the selling end of my business. Sales is simple, but not easy! Each certification provides me with critical skills needed to run and work in a successful Manufacturers Rep agency.
Dave Dasson, CPMR, CSP - Net Sales
I was so very pleased with the course overall. For me it was like a bear finding a honey tree. The information was very timely…the portion on legal was over the top for me…the information on generational issues was very good in opening my eyes to what is going on in the business world…It was just very good to be immersed in 4 days of study and reflective thought. The problem I am dealing with now is devoting enough time to attack the issues I want to attack I appreciate the support we get from your organization.
Dick Bailey, CPMR CSP - Conetic Resources (2008)
One of the first things that I learned about being successful is that the best thing that you can do to grow as a professional is continuing your education.
I was most impressed by the conversations I had with the attendees in the advanced levels of the CPMR Program and how much it has benefited them since they began the course. They were there to learn and not just to get through the course and receive their certificate.
It has been very rewarding for me and I look forward to using the concepts and material I learned daily to grow as a professional.
I have, and would, highly recommend this course to anyone who is looking to further improve and educate themselves professionally.
Scott Catanzarite, CPMR CSP - Group 4 Retail Equipment (2008)
What I like best about the CPMR program is the relationships that I have developed with the members of my study team. We are all from completely different industries, yet we share the same issues and challenges. I have learned how reps in other industries have adapted to the cold reality of shrinking commissions and the move to a direct sales force. I have learned how Reps in other industries have reinvented themselves as outsourced marketing firms, often charging for a multitude of services rather than just receive commissions for writing orders. A dynamic environment and the CPMR program provides the opportunity to transform the way I view my business. In a word, what I have gained from my participation in the CPMR program is, CONFIDENCE in my ability to find creative ways to adapt to a changing business environment. I love the gift industry and I love that it is constantly changing.
John Park, CPMR - Park Avenue Agents (2008)
I have to tell you, whenever I go to seminars I always try to bring back at least one thing to implement in my live at work or home. Well, I have to say, your program has literally given me a plethora of ideas that I will need to apply over the course of the next year simply because there is just too much. You have all really hit a home run with this program as far as I am concerned. Congratulations!!
Mike Cevetillo, CPMR - The Kirschner Group (2007)
As a lifelong learner, I having taken many courses during my business career and can honestly say that the CPMR program administered by The Institute for Professional Advancement was by far one of the most professional and best run programs I have ever experienced. This study program has enriched both my business and personal life
It is very obvious that a great deal of thought has been given to each and every aspect and the attention to detail is the key for success. The staff was extremely helpful in providing their time and resources to each and every participant that attended and worked to create an environment where learning and enjoyment was the main purpose.
Bob Johnson, CPMR - The Growth Partnership (2007)
As I enjoy a hot cup of coffee and look out at the piles of snow here in Ohio and 19 degree temperatures, it seems that Tempe, AZ seems a world away and almost like it never happened since it went so fast these past three years. However, let me reflect on this experience.
Recently, I attended the Design Engineer Show in Chicago and mentioned in the course of conversation with a rep working a booth that I was attending the CPMR program as well as working on my MBA at a local university here at home. He replied rather narrowly that he thought the CPMR was the "poor man's" MBA and that a real MBA wouldn't amount to much either in today's business climate. Such is the sentiment of many sales people (not just independent reps but direct sales and sales managers too) who think they know everything and can therefore suspend learning, the way they do things is the only way, and that the success they have found in the past will always work in the future. As someone in the sales profession for over 20 years and the product of a industrial sales / project engineer Dad and purchasing agent Mom, I could not disagree more with this rep's view of the world. Especially today in this declining economy and recession where every edge is magnified and more important.
As the sales role has evolved from the "3 martini lunch and golf outing days" into a more "partner oriented / well rounded business person who happens to know how to sell", programs such as CPMR are more important than ever before. The competitive sales game is flat out getting harder, the customer is under assault from within their own business environments, and the competition is now global not just local. If we as sales people can learn new methods to help these customers lighten their load even a small amount, then we will continue to have a place in this world and will stay in business and prosper while those who do not adapt disappear. It was amazing to take the CPMR at the same time as the MBA since many of the topics ran in parallel; tax accounting, finance, marketing, and even the 9 cell matrix was in my MIS MBA class called the Analytical Hierarchy Process (AHP). How "scary" is that? The difference is the MBA curriculum is primarily aimed at large publicly traded companies with little or no emphasis on the smaller, privately owned businesses that we own, represent, and call on.
In other words, the MBA is a macro look at business while the CPMR is a micro look with items that are applicable to everyone in the room. Does that make it a "poor man's MBA"? Not in my book. It makes the CPMR the "smart person's MBA that can be used immediately in their business". In today's business climate, with an emphasis on immediate return on investment (ROI), isn't that what every company wants and tries to achieve? This is not to diminish an MBA since it is also valuable to business people but to say one is less and thereby a lesser value is to miss the larger point of why this program is important. Besides, by the time one pays for airfare, hotel, meals, rental car, time away from the territory, and the cost of the program, it is not a "cheap date". Not complaining, mind you, just disputing such a notion that this investment is a cheap deal. It is not. It is a moderately priced investment which will pay dividends if some of the items are in fact implemented. The more that are implemented, the better the ROI.
Now what would I change? Not a thing. The quality of the instructors, facilities, and the learning materials. The fact that the program provides a mix of academia and working professionals gives the program enough academic theory for thought and consideration but also the "red meat" from people in the profession. Not many MBA, undergraduate, and seminar programs can provide this level of professional instruction within such a nice mix. The classes are jam packed with information and at the end of the day I rode the bus back to the hotel tired mentally but in a good and instructive way.
This is not a program for the lazy, just getting by sales person. If they are there, its an expensive endeavor. If they are using the information then perhaps they are turning onto the right track of professional development, life long learning, and this accomplishes the mission.
Elkay values CPMR because it teaches our Reps how to be better business people. We value that our Reps are talking about business with Reps in similar situations. We value succession planning. The value is in becoming more businesslike and understanding the importance of becoming business partners with Elkay.
Mark Whittington - Elkay (Manufacturer)
In my opinion, the planning focus, overall business skills, and quality of our independent representative organization has improved dramatically over the last five years. In this regard, I believe the CPMR program has provided invaluable insight, and training that was much needed. I encourage you to accelerate the process and continue the learning.
Del Nickel - Hoffman Engineering (Manufacturer)
Ferraz Shamut has a company culture that focuses heavily on continuous improvement and professional development as part of their core values. The CPMR designation immediately shows that an agency believes in these same values and is striving to become a more professional and productive organization.
Kenneth W. Hooper - National Electrical Manufacturers Representatives Association (NEMRA) (formerly with Ferraz Shamut)
CPMR 401...Testimonials for getting back on campus
CPMR 401 was GREAT! Patty and I came back and are already implementing some of the things we learned. I have been an agency principal over 20 years and did not realize what I did not know.
Tony Plonner, CPMR - Lighting Dynamics (2012)
Great to see you last week-seems like it was months ago already. I really liked the location we held this last session and would opt for a repeat at the same location in the future. Thanks again for a great week at CPMR 401.
Scott R. Hackman, CPMR - Pakoil Company
Thanks to you and MRERF for the continuing efforts. I was again very pleased with the quality of speakers and program. I am always reminded when put together with other reps, how similar our problems are even though we deal with very different customers and products. Thanks again for your help.
John Commons, CPMR - ELUS Company (2009)
On Study TEAMS...Small Groups...Best Practices Groups...Mastermind Groups...WHATEVER YOU WANT TO CALL IT...IT IS YOUR BEST RESOURCE
I AM NOT A JOINER TYPE OF PERSON. When I heard I would be involved in a “Study Team” I was not particularly thrilled with the idea. By the end of the first day, it became one of the key aspects of the CPMR class that I looked forward to the most about being there every year.
I am a HUGE CPMR fan, and I am more than happy to help with the class at any time!
(click here for Scott's complete thought)
Scott C. Shannon, CPMR - Source One Sales
My CPMR study team has allowed me to form close friendships with individuals outside my industry that I can openly discuss issues being faced within our business. These individuals are more than business confidants but dear friends. Over the years we have shared not only our business experiences but personal endeavors as well. Small Teams allow for the continuation of CPMR at all levels outside the classroom. Our graduating class saw many teams form close bonds and we hope future graduating classes will do the same.
Cathleen Hughes, CPMR, CSP - R. J. Hughes Company
During CPMR class weeks we got together every lunch and dinner to study and compare our industries. Their input was invaluable. During the years we have helped one another with software suggestions, commission negotiation ideas, personnel issues, etc. They helped me gain confidence as I took on more administrative responsibilities in my firm.
Karey Clements, CPMR - Forbes Hever & Wallace, Inc
I highly recommend getting involved with your study team. Our team stayed together all 3 years helping each other through the test material and daily homework questions. We meet each morning to review homework, and got to know each other very well. When the 3rd year came and we were presented with the final project we felt comfortable with each other and that made our task very easy to accomplish. The support we have for each other continues after CPMR as we help ach other with issues that arise in "the real world".
Frank Despain, CPMR - Ewing Foley
Joining a up with a few fellow reps in a “study team” is a good way to get to know them well. Members of your study team are some of the stronger bonds you make during your 3 years of CPMR. You help others through class questions and the end of week test, and they help you. You get to ask the smartest ones what they do, and listen and learn.
Ed O'Connor, CPMR - Simulcast Solutions
I found my CPMR study team to be equally beneficial to the instruction itself (with all due respect to the outstanding instructors). Working each evening with our team and talking about our real world experience reinforced what was presented by our instructors. We would then go for dinner after our study session to unwind a bit. I keep in touch with many from our team. It is not uncommon to run certain situations past each other as we encounter various challenges/opportunities with our businesses.
I highly recommend to work with your study team while attending CPMR.
Joe Quinn, CPMR - Grissinger Johnson Sales
The full, candid exchange of ideas with my study team is what really turned the CPMR experience into a dynamic, rewarding and profitable learning experience.
Charlie Parham, CPMR - Pepco Sales
The study teams were a lot of fun as well as being meaningful. It was great to share experiences and hear other people’s challenges and successes. For all the differences, in geography, lines, or markets it was amazing what we all had in common. The collaboration in creating the presentations, doing the case studies and doing the homework was an important exercise in cooperation. Additionally, the relationships built over 3 years create memories for a lifetime. It was really great working in the study teams.
Tom Banghart, CPMR - Tech Electric
The team we put together got more out of each class and went into the final exams with much more confidence. But the biggest plus was the networking and life long friendships developed.
Jeff Vadnais, CPMR - Sedlock Companies
The benefits of my study team were many:
o Got to hear problems reps were having in other industries than mine
o Learned new and different solutions to existing problems in my business
o Got different perspectives of instructor’s lecture
o Gave me a chance to compare notes for accuracy
o Gave me the opportunity to expand on my own study notes from the input of the study team members
o Forced me to do my study at a set time rather than put it off.
John Van Vessem, CPMR - Geo. E. Honn Company, Inc
I can not imagine doing the work for CPMR alone. Aside from the fact that a lot of the exercise requires “study as a team”, doing it with a team is what makes it enjoyable (no offense to any of the instructors).
Joel Golmont, CPMR - Smith & Stevenson Co
CPMR helps develop relationships that continue beyond CPMR and the ability to share “Best Practices”, regardless of your industry.
Tom Cotter, CPMR - Riffle & Associates
Benefits of my CPMR study team: Shared knowledge/intelligence, recognition of common problems across industries, business friendships beyond CPMR time, camaraderie, personal friendships, clarity of instruction, test study is much easier, deeper well of knowledge (someone has been there, done that already).
Carl Mathis, CPMR - Power Sales Company
The study teams are very important because of what you learn from reps in other territories, agencies and industries. It gives you many different ways to look at the information being provided by the class.
Craig Reyenga, CPMR - Reyenga Enterprises
1. One of the first benefits of a study team is the opportunity to meet other people, with shared professional interest’s and commitments to personal improvement.
2. Our team found that the interaction in the study team, was almost more of what we gained from CPMR, than the projects we worked on together. What I mean by this is, there are a lot of different view points on a particular subject. I found that by listening to each person’s perspective, I gained a real wealth of knowledge that I would never have gained had I been working on the same project alone.
3. It allows each person to work in a team, towards one goal. Our study team was filled with very fun energetic people that took it on as our team challenge to take everything that we did to the ultimate level. Not because we had to, but because we wanted to. The competitive juices were definitely flowing.
4. After a long day of classes, being able to have a group of people, with shared interest, to go out to dinner with, made the week a true pleasure.
5. I firmly believe that not only do I use the skills that I learned through the CPMR program, but I use the many things I learned from my study team partners as well.
After it was all said and done, as a graduate of the course, I still stay in contact with my study partners. Although they are all across the country, we all have a connection, and when times are tough, or confusing, we know we can pick up the phone and get someone on the other end that understands where we are coming from.
In closing, I AM NOT A JOINER TYPE OF PERSON. When I heard I would be involved in a “Study Team” I was not particularly thrilled with the idea. By the end of the first day, it became one of the key aspects of the CPMR class that I looked forward to the most about being there every year.
I am a HUGE CPMR fan, and I am more than happy to help with the class at any time!
Scott C. Shannon, CPMR - Source One Sales
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Full comments from Frank Doyle, a recent candidate in CPMR 301
I want to take some time to share with you my experience going through the Certified Professional Manufacturers Representative (CPMR) 3-year course. It has been extremely valuable not just to TD Marketing, but to your businesses as well. This is not just another 2-day sales class it is a certification process that takes place over a 3-year period. It has taught us how to be a better business person in sales NOT a better sales person in business. Big difference. We also formed groups in year-1 that we stayed with throughout the three-years and will continue to stay together to help each other’s businesses and run ideas off. These individuals were from all different industries including electronics, plumbing, food, automotive, petroleum etc… I was personally amazed to learn that so many other industries use and rely on Manufacturer Representative firms like TD Marketing not just the Commercial Food Service Equipment and Supplies Industry.
For the record I was not asked to send this email or even promote these certifications, but since I got so much from the course I felt it was important to share the experience with my Principals and Partners. I also want all of you to know the investment we are making to be better at what we do to help all of us make more money. We were educated on subjects like Finance, Succession Planning, Buy, Sell, Merge, Leadership, Management, Social Media, Strategic Planning, Legal and much more. Orientation started Sunday night, you got with your group for dinner then class started Monday-Thursday 8:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. every day with a short break for lunch. This was a very serious, very professionally run program. The final exam is always the final day, Friday, which you have to study for just about every night. Not everyone passes!
The last year that I just completed at the University of Texas we had a case study to present to a panel of CPMR Graduates and Professors. It taught us about line profitability, time analysis, employees, 9-Cell Matrix, Delta, SWOT etc… Probably one of the most challenging and educational experiences I have had since starting our rep business, TD Marketing. We did not only have representative firms in our class we had manufacturers as well. Some of the reasons the Principals attended CPMR was to understand the role of a rep firm as well as challenges, motivators and I’m sure much more. It made perfectly good sense if you use reps to figure out how to better partner with them to benefit your business. If you ever get a chance to speak to a Manufacturer that has gone through this certification I am extremely confident they will tell you they highly recommend it for other manufacturers as well.
I attached information for you all. You may be interested in the Manufacturer’s Best Practices (MBP) Working with Reps. Everyone from TD Marketing both inside and outside will all go through the Certified Sales Professional (CSP) certification I promise you that. You can also go to www.MRERF.org for additional information. You will notice our new signature below. Yes, we are now on Facebook, Twitter and everything is linking to our website (under construction now because of CPMR). We would like to make sure when our new website is launched that it links to all of your websites and your websites link to TD Marketing. I expect us to start to blog and comment to other industry related blogs. Our website is going to be a tool to capture leads and email addresses, promote new products, market specials and educate all of our customers on technology. See you all at NAFEM in a couple of weeks. Hope you get something from this. We did!
Frank Doyle, CPMR Candidate - TD Marketing