Looking for a job or deciding what to do with our lives is one of the most stressful and anxious positions to be in. There are many routes that anyone could take for their careers and few opportunities to obtain experience without already having worked elsewhere.
Vector Marketing is the perfect company for people trying to figure this all out. They are the sole marketing arm for CUTCO Cutlery. Based out of Olean, NY, the American-made cutlery brand has been manufacturing kitchen products since 1949, all of which carry their “Forever Guarantee”, allowing customers to have their products resharpened or replaced for free at any time.
Interestingly enough, what is more, impressive than their consumer products is the way they train and prepare young people for success outside of the classroom. Vector Marketing’s sales training seminar is college-accredited and has been implemented in classrooms at more than 15 colleges and universities throughout the US. In fact, the large majority of the company’s sales force is made up of 17-23 year old students, who almost unanimously have zero sales experience. Many of their sales reps and managers aren’t planning to study or go into a business-related field upon graduation.
“For many people who come through our doors, working here is the first real job they’ve ever had! Most of our applicants have some work experience, sure. However, it is rarely the type work experience that makes their application or resume stand out, nor is the type of experience that is helping them develop skills that transfer into multiple fields. That’s where we come in. We take people from where they are, to where they want to be. We simply use Cutco as the vehicle.”
Vector Marketing was ranked the #12 Best Place to Work by USA Today in 2018, ranked above companies like Delta Airlines and Microsoft. They received an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau and was selected as the #1 stepping stone company for college students by the Wall Street Journal in 2013. The company’s CEO Albert DiLeonardo was also voted the #27 CEO in the United States as ranked by Business Insider in 2019; ranked above Mark Zuckerburg of Facebook and Tim Cook of Apple.
Vector Marketing’s talent acquisition and sales force are shepherded by a leadership team of 40 Division Managers, each of which oversees operations for a state(s). One of the company’s youngest and most dynamic leaders is Bryan Hurlman, who is responsible for recruiting, sales and leadership development in the states of Virginia and West Virginia.
The Virginia Titan Division was founded in 1994 out of Fairfax, Virginia, as an affiliate company of Vector Marketing and Cutco Cutlery. They have 16 office locations throughout the area and partner with multiple educational institutes and programs like DECA, business fraternities like Alpha Kappa Psi and non-profits like the Front Row Foundation.
In 2017, with the promotion of Bryan Hurlman to Division Manager of The Virginia Titan Division of CUTCO sales, the organization went through a rebranding process to tackle their underwhelming performance. Under Bryan’s leadership, the Virginia Titan Division went from 2.7 million in 2017 to 3.6 million in 2018 and 4.7 million in 2019. What’s more impressive is that in the face of the global COVID-19 pandemic, they are continuing their growth trajectory. The Virginia Titan Division is on pace to reach over 6 million in sales revenue in 2020.
“The rebranding of the Division has been an exciting and challenging journey. At the time Bryan left his role as District Manager, he was ranked the #3 DM of all time in the 40 year history of Vector Marketing. In the two short years in his new role, Bryan has taken The Virginia Titan Division from the bottom 10% of the CUTCO divisions to the top 10%.”
Bryan was able to achieve this in part due to skills that he deems indispensable, which he ensures that his sales representatives and management staff are able to acquire through their experience with Vector Marketing. Touted as one of the best trainers in the company, Bryan dives deep into concepts like why (and more importantly) how to be an aggressive learner, how to sell yourself, a product or an idea, and how to effectively work with and collaborate with others. These are a few of the important skills that Vector Marketing prides itself on fostering in its people.
“It’s important for people to develop skills that are applicable, transferable and marketable. Skills like public speaking, time management, problem solving, critical thinking, relationship and rapport building, handling and overcoming challenges and learning to effectively lead yourself and others are skills that make you more confident and successful regardless of future career path.” Bryan says.
Bryan believes that having good grades, getting an internship and/or going to college is the traditional path, but it will not get you far in today’s economy. Instead, you need to be different and do things that most people don’t.
“Don’t be afraid to take risks, and know that if you want to be highly successful at anything you do in life, I think a good starting point is to develop a healthy relationship with failure. The most important step in doing so is being willing to get outside of your comfort zone.” These are some of the things Bryan points out. “I can confidently say that it’s going to be hard to find a company that teaches and encourages these things more effectively and passionately, than we do as an organization.”
For Bryan, who has led his division towards massive growth in recruiting and sales revenue, defines success as “aggressively, passionately and intentionally growing into the best version of yourself, being fulfilled and challenged, enjoying the process, pursuing excellence in everything you do while inspiring and instructing others to do the same.”
The long term goals of The Virginia Titan Division are to be the premier student work opportunity in Virginia and West Virginia and to scale from 16 office locations to over 20 in the next two years as they build toward a 10+ million dollar division, which only one Division Manager has accomplished in the past 40 years.
“I also want to positively and dramatically impact the lives of over one million young people in my time as Division Manager with Vector Marketing and Cutco.” Bryan states.
Vector Marketing believes that work should be fun and rewarding. They offer a base pay regardless of sales, a competitive commission structure, and a flexible schedule, all of which can be executed remotely, allowing the company to adapt to work in the current climate with ease. In fact, all of the interviews, training, and presentations are conducted virtually, through online video conferencing platforms like Zoom.
The Virginia Titan Division focuses on providing an exceptional training program and creates the space for personal growth for anyone seeking to separate themselves from their peer group, given they are willing to learn and challenge themselves –no experience required. To learn more about this fantastic workspace, how to apply for a job there or learn more about the way they do things, go here.