If you’re a sales professional looking for an exciting and growing field, pharmaceutical sales might be right for you. Many salespeople who started their careers in unrelated fields have made a successful transition to pharmaceutical sales. Some pharmaceutical companies embrace sales staff taking their first step into the field.
To move successfully into your first pharmaceutical sales position, keep these tips in mind:
Sell your soft skills.
The technical knowledge required in each sales position varies, but the fundamental soft skills of professional sales success remain the same. In your applications and interviews, focus on how you’ve used skills like communication, listening, persistence and teamwork to meet your goals. Also, identify one or two areas where you’re weakest and be prepared to discuss how you’ve adapted your work or sought to improve this weakness.
Focus on soft skills essential to pharmaceutical sales.
While all sales positions require certain soft skills, a handful of these skills are especially prized in pharmaceutical sales. For instance, pharmaceutical sales professionals are constantly learning information about the products they offer – both as new pharmaceuticals are released and as new applications for existing pharmaceuticals are discovered. Work to build your curiosity and self-driven learning and demonstrate how you’ve used these skills to succeed on the job.
Use your network.
Even if your professional network doesn’t currently contain any pharmaceutical professionals, their references and support can still help you move into a pharmaceutical position. Make time once a week to get in touch with a professional contact to talk about your plans and ask for advice. Networking contacts who have made a move from one industry to another can be especially helpful in providing tips for transition.
Work with a recruiter.
A recruiter who specializes in connecting sales professionals with pharmaceutical companies can be your biggest ally in the job search. Your recruiter can show you how to present your existing experience in the best possible light for a pharmaceutical sales position. Since your recruiter works closely with many pharmaceutical companies, they can also guide you toward open positions in sales departments that align with your values and work style, boosting your chances of success on the job.
At SMR Group Ltd, our recruiters help sales and marketing professionals connect with great employers in the pharmaceutical, biotech and medical device industries. To learn more, contact us today.