Surfing the net for a pharmaceutical sales job is tiresome and looking at classified job ads can be tedious and well… boring. But what about business networking? No, it’s not as tedious as it sounds. In fact, it can be fun and interesting because you get to meet lots of people that are in the pharmaceutical sales profession and get the chance to hear about great job opportunities even before they are advertised!
To engage in networking, you must first identify venues to attend. First off, ‘stick close to home’. List down all the people you know who either have a pharmaceutical sales career or knows somebody who is into the industry. Friends, family, former colleagues, neighbors, teachers, classmates… it doesn’t matter. Get the list started and start calling!
Another great idea is to list yourself up in one (or more) of the many pharmaceutical sales seminars or conventions that are often hosted by pharmaceutical firms or their marketing arms. You can also initiate informational interviews by contacting several pharmaceutical sales professionals and asking for an interview.
Now that the ‘stage is set’. Keep in mind the following networking tips.
* Have a good memory for names and don’t forget to always have a business card in hand.
* Just before you end a conversation, ask for referrals or suggestions about other people you should talk to.
* When in an informational interview, always prepare a good resume just in case the interviewee asks for one.
* Be organized. Manage your network by getting all their contact information and keeping a record in your desktop or online address book.
* Never take your network for granted. Always let them know what your status is and don’t forget to always thank them when they do something nice and helpful to you.
* Re-establish old contacts and continue making new ones. You never really know what might turn up from which contact.
Important Thoughts about Pharmaceutical Networking
Being in pharmaceutical sales is fulfilling because you get to know different people every day and you get that feeling of accomplishment every time you make a successful sale. The rewards are high and the perks are addicting. It’s never too late to start learning how to network your way into the pharmaceutical sales world. Don’t forget that the human resources department does not make the final decision when it comes to hiring you or someone else. Make friends with the pharmaceutical sales people and gather as much information as you can to prepare you.
Bear in mind that honesty and integrity matter as well. Pharmaceutical networking is about building relationships and you do not want to appear phony to your contacts or future employers.
Further, networking is a two-way street so never hesitate to do a favor or two yourself for someone because you never really know what that person can do for you later.