So you wanna be a pharmaceutical rep? It’s easy to understand the appeal of this exciting career. If you’d enjoy a position with plenty of independence, a generous salary, and person-to-person relationship-building, pharma sales could be for you.
With all the competition out there (and Covid-19 making in-person networking extra tough) pharmaceutical sales can be a challenging field at the moment. However, cultivating the right qualities is key to success. Considering diving into this rewarding role? Take stock of your alignment with the following five attributes.
A career as a pharma rep not only provides flexibility in terms of work schedule and travel—it requires flexibility on your part. The motto of the pharma rep might well be “roll with the punches.” Some days you may find yourself on the road long after you’d hoped to be home, or scratching your head to figure out a new and different sales tack when your original plan fell flat. Successful reps adapt to unforeseen circumstances, knowing that flexibility leads to creative solutions.
Most people go into the medical field out of a sincere desire to help others. Doctors and their staff want to use pharmaceuticals that benefit the lives of their patients. As a sales rep, it’s your job to connect with this passion. Give some real thought to the positive outcomes your drugs bring to people’s health. As the point person behind these products, it should excite you to know they might help someone live their best life. The more passionate you feel about your product, the more convincing you’ll be at selling it.
When you’re selling a pharmaceutical, you’re the expert. As such, there are three words that never belong in your vocabulary: “I don’t know.” To answer any and all questions from physicians, it’s absolutely critical to know your product inside and out. Are you willing to put in the time to get educated about your drugs, even if it requires some mental gymnastics? You may not need a degree in biology or chemistry to master the concepts behind your drug or product, but you’ll need to be ready to bone up on your science. Doing so will make you a genuine authority.
Effective pharmaceutical sales—or, heck, any type of sales—extends from effective relationship-building. People skills are paramount for initiating and maintaining relationships with physicians and their staff. Successful pharma reps know the art of maintaining a friendly demeanor, remembering personal details, or sending a note of thanks after a great meeting.
Reps also need excellent communication skills for productive networking. Leads don’t just fall out of thin air—they’re often generated through personal connections. Getting involved in social media groups and professional organizations are just a couple of communication channels for getting a foot in the door.
Being your own boss is an awesome gig, but it’s not for everyone. With independence comes the need to manage your time wisely. If you’re a self-starter, you’ll likely thrive on the juggling act of research, communication, education, and sales a pharma rep position requires. Many successful reps use a time-blocking strategy, setting aside certain times of day for various tasks, such as answering email, making phone calls, and scheduling presentations. As you gain more experience in your career as a rep, you’ll find the time management strategy that’s right for you.
Finally, there’s one surefire way to make the most of your precious time: let CaterSquad do the work of catering your meetings with docs and their staff. Our expert orderers are always on hand to select delicious meals that set the right tone for any event. Text us at 858.999.5129 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org to start ordering today!