If you’re looking for a job in medical sales, you’re aware there’s a lot to learn just to get your foot in the door. However, once you get your job offer, your career will quickly take off. You need to be prepared to cram. The catch is, you need to be ready to take on independent learning on the job and retain information the right way.
There’s a lot of detailed information you’re going to be responsible for learning on the job well beyond the initial training days when starting your medical sales career. In fact, selling in an industry where health products evolve and new medical products are constantly introduced means you’re going to need to learn new products regularly.
Fortunately, we have a few tips to help you dig into new product details now and in the future:
Set a strategy you can stick with
When starting out in a new role in which you need to learn complex information about numerous products, learn to navigate a new sales area, learn about new clients, and so on is not the time to set ambitious goals. Create a plan you know you can reasonably stick to.
Before starting, request an informational interview with one of the reps who have experience in your sales area. Learn from them on how long it takes to get up to speed on products and navigate technology used to communicate with the team and clients or log paperwork. Use their tips to build a strategy for gathering information you need on a regular basis to be successful.
Consider your lifestyle and personal commitments and determine a schedule to focus on learning the information you need without burning out. One of the worst mistakes you can make getting started in medical sales is upsetting your work-life balance before you even start your new job.
Schedule dedicated learning time
When you’re building out your schedule, look ahead at how you can make time for learning on the job a regular part of your weekly routine. There will be a lot less information you need to study and retain once you work your way through the onboarding process, yet ongoing learning is necessary to keep you sharp in medical sales.
Keep in mind, medical sales is a rapidly advancing industry. New drugs, devices, and medical breakthroughs hit the market regularly. You don’t want to risk falling behind on product and industry knowledge because you overbook yourself once you get comfortable in your new role.
Find a day of the week you can dedicate a few hours to researching and learning about medical sales trends and new product information. Staying in the know will make you more valuable to clients and will keep you ahead of the competition.
Study reasonable chunks of information
It’s important you strategize how you are going to gather new medical sales knowledge. Even if you reserve time for learning on the job, your time is wasted if you become overwhelmed by the amount of new information.
Determine a priority for all the new details you need to consume on a weekly basis. Then set a plan to check off your list by breaking it down into reasonable amounts of information.
For example, if you have three new products to learn about, decide which products are most important based on their availability to clients and which clients you will meet within the coming week. In weeks you need to learn more about new products, note to spend less time or set aside additional time to read through related news articles, etc.
Seek out a mentor
You may want to look for a mentor to get a better grasp of some sales skills. Be honest with yourself about your weaknesses and look for medical sales reps, leaders, or even social influencers who can offer guidance to improve on them. This could apply to learning new tricks and tips to improve sales skills or even just how to be a more effective learner.
It’s important to note that your mentor doesn’t need to be in the same industry to be an effective and valuable influence on your medical sales career. Create a list of areas you want to improve and learn more about. Then create a list of people who you admire for their strengths in these skills. Determine your priorities and reach out to the first potential mentor on your list.
While some of your mentors may not be knowledgeable about medical sales products, they likely have to stay abreast of updates in their industries. Hack into their process of learning new information and find new ways to retrieve and retain product information.
The best step you can take to ensure you reach your medical sales career goals is to take control of your development and growth. Being knowledgeable about products, the industry, and your clients will make you a more valuable resource for your customers and your team.