As part of the interview process, many medical device companies will ask the candidate to construct a 30-60-90 day plan. Even if it is not required, doing so will demonstrate to the hiring authority the candidates’ serious intentions towards the particular position they are interviewing for. A well thought out plan will include a preliminary preparation plan in addition to a concise and detailed business plan that includes both tactical and strategic initiatives. I cannot emphasize how important it is to lay out a detailed and well thought out plan. An investment of maybe 3-4 hours will be more than worth the time and effort when the job offer is extended.
Preliminary preparation includes initial company research and is more strategic than tactical. If the company is publicly traded, one would want to obtain the annual reports that are available for investors and potential investors and study them. Often, company information on private companies can be purchased through sources such as Hoovers, Zoom Info, or Dunn & Bradstreet. A candidate will also want to meet with the district manager to discuss market analysis and target market, territory, and features/benefits of the products and services offered by the company. For the business to business salesperson, it will be essential to familiarize oneself with the language and buzzwords of the medical and pharmaceutical field. For the medical sales rep, this would be the time to conduct further research on the products and services being offered by the company as well as construction of competitive analysis.
The first 30 days should not only include a thorough understanding of the internal workings of the company, but also include a plan to introduce oneself to all customer contacts. Learning the email system, customer retention management system (CRM), reading and understanding company policy and procedure, attending training programs, mastering product knowledge are all tactical initiatives. Most quality companies do train their sales staff extensively (whether for pharmaceutical sales positions, biotech sales jobs, clinical and research laboratory sales opportunities, or medical device sales). Strategic initiatives include broadening knowledge in the field of medicine, identifying trade groups, and thoroughly understanding the target market.
The next thirty days includes more field time, less training, and more customer interaction. Tactical initiatives would include fine tuning the driving route through the territory, detailed call plan, and fine tuning presentation style. Strategic plans would include studying additional material regarding sales style, meeting with the district manager to discuss progress, and joining industry specific professional groups.
The tactical part of the plan should contain development and implementation of a specific “game plan” which includes setting higher goals for six months and one year, developing target lists of accounts based on needs analysis, and creating and implementing a measurable results call plan. Strategic initiatives would include attending professional networking events, meeting with sales team to assess strengths and weaknesses of the territory, continual research in the medical industry as well as improving sales presentation skills.