Working in a pharmaceutical sales role is a challenging task that many professionals find very rewarding. However, most people strive for improvement in status, recognition, and responsibilities, continuing over the course of their careers. Whether you are just starting out in this field or are hoping to make some progress after a few years of stagnation, these five tips will help you set the stage for the career progression you desire in pharmaceutical sales.
1. Set Clear Goals
You know you want to develop your career, but have you given any thought to what that development should look like?
You may want to develop professional renown based on your in-depth knowledge of the pharmaceutical industry. Perhaps you would like to make it into the executive suite one day. You may even want to shift your focus altogether and break into the medical device, or biotechnology space instead. Identify what meaningful career progression looks like to you, then use that information to determine which skills you need to develop through education or practical experience. This will help you chart your course to greater heights.
2. Develop Your Resiliency
Even the best sales representatives will encounter the occasional roadblock during their career. Not all your pitches will be well-received, and you may even lose some long-term clients due to problems like economic downturns or corporate restructuring.
These things are disappointing, but they are also unavoidable at times. A good salesperson views failures as an opportunity to learn and improve. Instead of becoming discouraged over these setbacks, ask yourself what you could do better next time. These reflections will help you identify the weak points in your sales approach and determine what needs to be done to improve your skills in that area.
3. Network Frequently
Finding success in pharmaceutical sales often comes down to relationship-building – not just with your current clients, but also with other contacts within your field. Trade shows are an excellent place to find new prospects with whom you can slowly establish trust. Professional organizations like the National Association of Pharmaceutical Representatives are another good resource.
4. Find a Mentor
There are many things about sales that can only be learned through experience. Finding a mentor allows you to learn from their experience instead of having to find these things out on your own.
Connecting with a more experienced sales professional gives you access to someone who can guide you through the finer points of your role. Your mentor may also have received additional training that you have not. For instance, they may have undergone advanced courses like healthcare executive training to prepare to step up to higher roles. They can impart some of this knowledge to you and let you know which types of training have been most valuable to their career trajectory.
5. Invest in Continuing Education
Finally, be sure to keep up with your professional education over the course of your career. Earning a postgraduate degree is one way to show your customers you have advanced scientific knowledge. This can help you win their trust, but it will not necessarily make you a better salesperson.
A better approach is to invest in individual continuing education courses. Many top healthcare consulting firms offer training specific to the pharmaceutical industry. The knowledge imparted through these courses is immediately applicable to your daily work. You can use this information to generate impressive results and have a tangible impact on your company’s bottom line. Proving your value in this way makes you an excellent candidate for the raises, promotions, and other benefits that establish career progression.
Get Ahead with Professional Healthcare Sales Training
Your career will not build itself: it is up to you to take the steps needed to accomplish your goals. Invest in your future potential with professional training from The Brooks Group. Our pharmaceutical market research services and account management training courses have helped many a trainee develop into a leader in the healthcare industry. Contact us for more information on any of our healthcare training courses and begin working toward industry prominence.