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The Now, The New & The Next in Careers

Pharmaceutical Regional Manager Explains His Success

17 Jan 2012 5:44 PM | Anonymous

This story will take you through the ups and downs you can expect as a regional manager in the pharmaceutical industry, what it takes to land the job, what you can expect to earn and more.

With over eight years in the pharmaceutical industry, I have finally attained the position of regional manager. With this position comes a great deal of responsibility. This position requires one to be diligent to his or her duties, trustworthy to handle pharmaceutical samples, and patient with his or her sales representatives. Being Hispanic, I am a minority in this industry. However, this has greatly improved my sales records, which helped me eventually attain the position of regional manager.

Because I am bilingual, I have been able to better serve doctors that deal with Hispanic patients. At times, I have served as a translator for my doctors while doing preceptorship, which is when the pharmaceutical sales representative shadows the doctor for a day. Although there have been times where I have felt discriminated against, most of the time my bilingual skills, along with my relation to minorities, has created a positive atmosphere within my daily working environment.

The pharmaceutical industry is very competitive, and the position of regional manager is a job of numbers. In order for me to be successful, my sales representatives must perform far above standard, which requires me to provide them with the skills to persuade doctors to prescribe my products. The pharmaceutical industry has gotten a bad reputation over the last few years concerning the honesty and salesmanship of its workers, although we employ only educated and intelligent individuals who provide their doctors with the highest quality details.

I find my job very satisfying and would rate it an eight out of ten. I enjoy working with others, a competitive environment, and the ability to set my own salary with a base and commission. I also enjoy the fact that I am helping others treat or even cure their disease state. This gives meet complete job satisfaction and is good for my heart as well. I believe this was my calling in life as my desire to help others while earning a comfortable living reigns supreme.

My accomplishments thus far have been nothing short of amazing as I led the company in sales for the last three years up until my promotion. My accomplishments, however, must be chalked up to sheer persistence and hard work. Also, the fact that I am bilingual has greatly helped me effectively communicate with some of my doctors.

I began my sales career early where I started in the rental car industry. I quickly gained experience managing others while also learning the sales industry. I rapidly moved up the ladder, and because of my sales ability, I was recruited into the pharmaceutical industry. From the get go, I realized that the pharmaceutical industry was nothing like the rental car industry and learned the hard lesson of rejection.

This lesson would lead me to also learn the skill of consistent persistence. I never took no for an answer and would never change the roads taken in the past that led me to this industry. One thing one may find about this industry is that other sales positions are constantly attempting to recruit you into their industry. This seemed strange to me at first because this was the only job I had ever been recruited for. The industry of sales, however, is always looking for solid representatives.

Along with a six figure base salary and the ability to make commission, I enjoy going to work each day due to the fact that I’m changing people’s lives. When I, or my sales representatives, convince a doctor to prescribe my particular line of drugs, I know that their patients will receive the pain relief that they need. This makes my job very rewarding both intrinsically as well as extrinsically. However, there are days when my job is very stressful although I never feel like quitting.

Quitting is not an option for those of us who have learned the lessons of persistence and perseverance. Some stressful aspects of my job revolve around my own sales representatives and their performance. On a rare occasion, I will have a representative that performs below standard. This may be due to a number of factors, which is why I must drop whatever I am doing at that time to address these concerns.

This may cause lost time with my family even on some of the most important dates. Although there are very stressful times during my working life, I am afforded four weeks of vacation time per year. I rarely spend that much time away from my job because of the sheer enjoyment as well as the fact that I get paid for those days that I do not take.

During my undergraduate degree, I would have never believed I would have been in the field of sales. The pharmaceutical industry, however, does not accept anyone with anything less than a four year degree. The potential employee does not have to have the degree in a specific area, but he or she must have a baccalaureate in some field.

For my friends who want to enter the industry, I tell them the best way to gain entry is by having a successful track record within the sales industry. Starting in an entry level position such as a management trainee program that focuses on sales is a great way to get your feet wet. Now that I have attained the position of regional manager, I will focus my time on moving into the position as director of sales or marketing. That is my goal!

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