Even though many medical salespeople are highly motivated to find a new position or simply to find employment, it’s interesting how the total arsenal of what a great candidate can bring to the table is often overlooked. This is no time to be modest. Believe me, those other candidates that you’re up against for that highly sought after medical sales position are polished and prepped, so you need to be too.
If you have a significant employment/educational background, delve into the benefits that this can provide for you in the interviewing process. These should be outlined and the delivery practiced prior to interviewing. These positions and/or accomplishments should be on your resume, so the best way to polish your delivery is simply practicing or “talking through” your resume to a friend or family member. After you feel comfortable talking through the content, make sure you can effectively “sell” your position by providing the benefits to the prospective employer by providing them with appropriate reasoning to hire you.
For instance, sell all of your benefits in an interview. A basic close might be, “Based on your review of my credentials and my strong proven sales successes, will you offer me the position?” (The interviewer might hee-haw around with a non-committal answer at this point.) Consider this close if you are a nurse. This can be fun….”Is there anyone else that you are considering that has proven b2b sales experience AND a recent clinical background?”
“Do you feel that this background would help me excel in your training program and provide me insight in a clinical sales position?” The obvious answer is yes…but let them (the interviewer) align with you. Now close again with the original same close from above…. Based on our review of my credentials and my strong proven sales successes, will you offer me the position? Is it not more impactful with the additional background from the candidate?
As you have heard a hundred times, know the background and history of the company that is offering you the interview. With that research and knowledge, you can now determine what benefits you can provide to that organization, based upon your background. Your research into their company and YOUR background can help make your responses highly relevant.
Getting back to medical or clinical sales, a good many of our clinical sales positions require a nursing/medical background. However, we’ve found that most base their hiring on a successful “hunter background” . The perception is that these folks can close business with a clinical finesse. Obviously, this background can also gain the respect of practitioners due to their credentials of LPN, RN, PA or NP just to name a few. You can possible garner a nice competitive edge by proving a strong business-to-business sales career plus an additional clinical/educational background.
Recently, I visited with a friend who spent 9 years as a high school science teacher. Utilizing his science education and teaching background, he acquired a position as a pharmaceutical sales representative. Most recently he has been promoted to a district manager with the same organization. His ability to teach science and communicate this technical information to others helped him to get into pharmaceutical sales. Without this specialty education, his journey into pharmaceutical sales may have been much more difficult.
Remember, to promote those additional skillsets that you may possess. You may have transferable skill sets from two industries that aren’t being marketed properly. These could be sales backed up by clinical knowledge or possibly sales ability with a teaching background as referenced above.
As a final reminder, When interviewing for a pharmaceutical or medical sales position, always lead with information regarding your outstanding sales abilities WITH proof. That manager wants someone that can ask for the business first and foremost and then close that business.
What we’ve discussed can help differentiate you from the other candidates that may be interviewing for a position that you desire. You need to bolster your position in the interview process by gaining the attention of the interviewer and providing the background and prowess that can’t be easily matched by your competition. If you accomplish this objective, you can make that hiring manager’s job easier by selecting YOU!