Selling Tickets and Memories: Interning for the Monsters and Gladiators
By Matt Jones ’18
At the start of the spring semester, I woke up early in the morning to walk from a hotel in downtown Cleveland to Quicken Loans Arena. The Q was hosting the Mount Union Sports Sales Workshop, a very important event for entry-level job seekers in the sports industry. I, like many other students attending the event, was eager to receive advice from some of the best sales trainers in the industry. I was also looking forward to interviewing with several professional sports organizations for a summer internship in sales. Little did I know, this event would eventually lead to me board a flight to Oakland to witness LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers play Game 2 of the 2017 NBA Finals.
My name is Matt Jones and I am a senior Finance and Sport Business major at Mount. Upon graduation, I will be pursuing a career in the sports industry so I was eager to use this summer to grow my career and learn about the industry as a whole. At the Sports Sales Workshop, an event run by Mount Union, I was able to network with teams from each of the major sports leagues in the country. Before the event, I had secured interviews with several teams about summer internships. My interview with the Cleveland Monsters and Gladiators went well, and they eventually offered me the position of Season Assistant in Ticket Sales for the summer. Not only was the position a great opportunity to build my career, but the organization I would be working for was fantastic as well. So, during the spring semester I accepted the role and eventually began planning my move to Cleveland for the summer. My brother and I quickly found an apartment to rent and prepared to spend our first summer away from home in downtown Cleveland.
My position with the organization is fairly straightforward. I am responsible for driving new business by reaching out to fans of the Monsters and Gladiators. Many of the individuals are families or couples who would like to become members of Monsters Hockey Club or Gladiators Football Alliance. Memberships offer tickets to all of our games, as well as many exciting benefits. In addition, I contact many businesses and organizations about opportunities for group outings, employee incentives, and ways to grow their respective businesses. It may sound like I am simply selling tickets, but I am also selling the experiences that come with those tickets: the long car rides to the stadium with the entire family, the game and drinks with buddies from work, or the memory of a last-second touchdown to clinch a trip to the playoffs.
My experience has been wonderful. I have been able to meet with so many successful sales people – leaders in the office who also happen to be leaders in the industry. I have learned a great deal during our daily training and through shadowing our senior representatives. The work is rewarding as well. Not only am I preparing for my future, but I am helping individuals become a part of something. Families are able to become members and make lifelong memories of the times they have had here at The Q. There have also been many perks that I was lucky enough to receive including my trip to see Game 2 in Oakland, which was my favorite perk!
Mount Union prepared me to go out into the job market and acquire this position and they prepared me for the position itself. All I had to do was take the initiative to actually go out and get it. My professors taught me about the sales process. They taught me about how to interview professionally. They even hosted the workshop where I could interview for the role. Mount Union has taught me to jump at good opportunities, while supplying me with great opportunities the whole way.