Photo of Dr. Jack Lesser

I have personally always been a fan of the semi-colon, a strong pause, because this is how I speak, in run-on sentences; a fluid stream of words. I have noticed that my younger classmates, you millennials, prefer no punctuation at all. I have to admit that I find beauty in this; leaving things open, a lack of finality. Dr. Lesser, perhaps you know him, a professor at UMC, favors the exclamation point! To a traditional Midwesterner this is very off-putting at first. Why is he always so excited? Does he mean it? Is it genuine? As a former student I can guarantee you that his excitement is one of the most sincere things in this world.

Dr. Jack Lesser is a marketing professor at UMC; guiding students in creating an effective marketing mix, analytics, strategy, and research; teaching all of these things with one main focus, the customer. In this specific case the customer is the student, you and me. Customers by definition buy, consume, and dispose of goods and services purchased. I believe it to be Dr. Lesser’s hope that students, online or on campus, buy his class, consume his knowledge, and dispose of it on the world; changing the trajectory of our consumer-driven culture for the better.

We as humans are consumers by nature. Some of the most natural things we consume are air and water; things absolutely necessary to survive. Dr. Lesser sees marketing in this way, in the most anthropic of terms, always aware of the human needs that surround him, but it is in the discovery of needs that have yet to be realized that he becomes excited – needs, that if gone unmet, could quite possibly limit the consumer’s truest potential or dampen their overall experience.

There are two things I believe to be true about outstanding marketing and sales: the first is that the seller must believe in his product, and the second is that the seller must truly want what is in the buyer’s best interest. It is this complete lack of conflict that makes the discovery of needs and meeting those needs satisfying for both parties. Dr. Lesser does just this! He is convicted in his product, education; and truly wants what is in the buyers best interest, understanding. It is in this transaction that students come to believe in what Dr. Lesser sold to them; that we are all capable of becoming genius merchants.

“My unofficial role is to get my students to realize that they are talented.  I want them to "try" to stretch themselves.  I want to make them feel proud of themselves for trying, and trying again.   I want them to never forget that they have a brain and that their brain can make lives happen!” - Dr. Jack Lesser

About UMN Crookston

One of five campuses in the University of Minnesota System, the University of Minnesota Crookston cultivates curiosity by engaging students in hands-on learning connecting theory to practice. As the experienced leader in delivering education online, the Crookston campus offers a distinctive learning environment providing personal attention and mentorship to develop leaders, lifelong learners, and engaged citizens. Visit Crookston at 

About UMN

The University of Minnesota System, with campuses in Crookston, Duluth, Morris, Rochester, and the Twin Cities, is driven by a singular vision of excellence. We are proud of our land-grant mission of world-class education, groundbreaking research, and community-engaged outreach, and we are unified in our drive to serve Minnesota. Learn more at

Story Contact: Shawn Smith