It may seem like an obvious question. After all what’s not to love? Money, flexibility, status…who wouldn’t want a medical sales job? But there is more to a career in medical sales than hob-nobbing with doctors and collecting a fat paycheck. If you are serious about starting a career in medical sales, you should know exactly what you are pursuing.
Your first glimpse into medical and pharmaceutical sales may have been the attractive woman with a suitcase and a box of bagels in the waiting room of your physician’s office. “Who’s she?” you ask. “Oh, just the pharma rep,” the nurse replies, perhaps with a roll of his eyes. You never considered how your physician acquired those free samples he gave you at the last visit, or how he decides to prescribe one drug over the other, but now – upon seeing the pharma rep – it starts to click into place.
Or perhaps you are a nurse in a hospital or a physician’s office. You’ve watched the various pharma and device reps come and go, wearing shoes you could never afford, and you wonder if you could use your medical knowledge to be a successful med rep.
Maybe you have a bit of sales experience, and a friend has suggested that you should think about transitioning into pharmaceutical sales. You ask around – and upon learning about the money and the relative flexibility – you think your friend may be on to something.
But pharmaceutical sales is only one small segment of medical sales. If you hope to build a career in medical sales you need to make an informed decision about:
- The type of medical sales you want to pursue, and
- The level of effort it will require to break into (and be successful in) this highly competitive field.