“Be sure to bring a 30-60-90 day business plan to the interview,” the recruiter casually mentions as the conversation comes to a close.
“Of course,” you say, gulping, but what exactly does she mean? You vaguely remember this from the last time you were job hunting, but it’s been a while and everything about the medical sales job search seems to have changed.
You hang up and start furiously searching “30-60-90 day plan example” online in the hopes of finding something to copy, but you know this strategy isn’t likely to wow the hiring manager. The more you read, the more it feels like your business plan can make or break your medical sales interview, and you’re not sure where to begin.
So, first things first — what is a business plan for interviews?
The 30-60-90 day plan is a written strategy for your first three months on the job. The plan should show the hiring manager you understand the responsibilities of the job and are prepared to perform it well. If the company has a detailed medical sales training program in place for new hires, that can be incorporated into the plan, but if the company does not (and many don’t), the plan should show that you have the initiative to get ramped up quickly and that you won’t be a drain on resources during the process.
Creating a business plan for interviews is an important part of the medical sales hiring process. However, your employer isn’t going to give you step-by-step instructions and a 30-60-90 day business plan example.
If you don’t know where to start, use these tips to craft an impressive business plan for job interviews:
Do your research & customize your plan
Tailoring a business plan to a specific employer will take research — and a lot of it. For your plan to be effective, you will need to understand the company’s products, corporate values, major problems, and market. Your research should aim to discover the employer’s strategies and top initiatives.
Your plan should speak to the company’s needs, products, specific market, and values. Use your knowledge of the medical device or pharmaceutical industry and the specific company to craft a plan that speaks to its unique needs.
Start on the company website and social media profiles; then, move on to recent news articles and other information you can find in an online search. LinkedIn is a good place to find more personal and in-depth information. Search the employer’s groups, discussions, and corporate page.
You can also look through the profiles of the company’s current employees for hidden gems of information. What do they have in common? What are the most important skills and qualities for the job?
If you have a connection who currently or previously worked for the company, reach out to them for an inside look at how it functions, its biggest challenges, and employee expectations. This information can help you determine how you can contribute to the team and serve as the major theme of your plan.
Don’t make promises you can’t keep. You want to present yourself in a positive light and show that you will succeed in the job. Employers will see through phony, unrealistic numbers.
When crafting your plan, remember that it will take time to adjust to the position and build up your knowledge and contacts, especially if you are transitioning from pharma sales to device sales or even to a different disease state. Your plan should reflect your growth from your first day to your 90th day.
Start with smaller goals and smaller accounts, gradually building up to more ambitious clients and numbers.
Don’t get so wrapped up in your research and crunching exact numbers that you forget the purpose of your business plan. It needs to answer a very basic but important question — will you make money for the employer?
When it comes down to it, the hiring manager only wants to know what you will be able to do for them. How will you make their life easier and how can you solve problems the team faces?
Your business plan for interviews should include specific numbers and information about the medical devices you will be working with and the industry as a whole. The focus of the plan should be a summary that demonstrates how you will ramp up and start bringing in money for the employer. It should show you are familiar with the market and can use that information to improve the company’s sales.
The basic outline
While you should tailor your business plan for interviews to the specific employer, knowing where to start can be difficult. Here’s a basic 30 60 90 day plan example to get you started:
This part of the plan is the simplest since you will still be in the learning and adjustment phase of the job. Include the company’s training plan, learning about products and clients, and getting to know the team in this section.
During your second month on the job, you should expect to spend more time in the field. This part of the plan should specify meeting clients, visiting hospitals and health systems, evaluating customer satisfaction, and discussing your progress with your manager.
Now is the time to start including your more ambitious goals and larger clients. Include new ways you can work to connect with physicians and hospital leaders or any other ideas you have to improve the sales strategy.
Again, this 30 60 90 day plan is pretty generic. Your plan should include specific details, information, and numbers to show your potential employer you are knowledgeable and competent.
Creating a 30 60 90 day business plan will take a lot of time and thought. But an effective plan will not only help you land the medical sales job you want but will also prepare you to succeed in the position.