Over the years, I’ve been asked hundreds of time the best way to transition or enter into medical device sales, and my answer is always the same. It depends.
It depends on your unique background, training, and skill set. Your recipe for success is going to be different than everyone else out there. I wish I had the magic beans, secret sauce, or the golden ticket to share with you. The best I can do is share my approach and what worked for me and some of my clients.
Here is my story about how I broke into medical device sales, https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/what-my-father-taught-me-sales-helped-break-medical-device-porcaro.
Here’s another article with more tips, “The BEST free advice on how to successfully transition in Medical Device Sales Industry” https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/best-free-advice-how-break-medical-device-sales-webinar-steve-porcaro/
Here is my recipe for success to transitioning or breaking into medical device sales.
Preparation is the key to success.
– Alexander Graham Bell
First Things First
This is where your new career starts. We’ll begin by planning your work, and working your plan. We’ll discuss the different types of medical devices, available sales positions, and organizations that you may encounter during your search. You’ll take inventory of what makes you a successful sales professional and use it as a foundation on which to develop your search campaign. The answers to these questions will guide your subsequent strategies and assist with planning and preparation.
This self-assessment and review step will ensure you:
- Are open to new ideas and approaches
- Develop a plan for a career in medical device sales
- Know what desirable qualities companies want in medical device sales professionals
- Learn to see yourself through others’ eyes
- Succeed in career change with minimal disruption to your life
- Discover your behavioral selling style and use it for interviewing
One-Size Does Not Fit All
While self-promotion is normally uncomfortable, if you don’t know and believe in yourself, how can you expect others to? During your transition, you must successfully promote the ‘product’ -YOU. It is vital that you fully understand what you have to offer, and how it will differentiate you from your competition. This requires a deeper review of your value to the right company. By determining your specific job interests and the types of activities you enjoy while selling, this information will uncover your ideal sales job. You’ll also use this information to align with a corresponding medical device position. This step will help you to identify transferable job skills, interests, and other requirements needed to narrow your target market.
You will be able to:
- Describe your ultimate sales goal
- Identify key professional skills required for medical device sales jobs
- Utilize personal skills needed for industry
- Emphasize background and experience
- Start preparing for the interview process
Preparing for Sales Success
This step will help you to develop the ‘tools’ and skills you need to effectively overcome your lack of medical device sales experience and focus on your transferable skills. We’ll discuss topics such as accessing the ‘hidden job market’, networking and researching into the specific product or niche market, and specific companies. You’ll take these elements from your past and learn how to incorporate them into your story. You’ll share this while networking and eventually during the interview process. Your professional portfolio will be one of your first pieces of sales literature (besides your resume).
We’ll discuss the best way to:
- Learn more about your target company/product and market
- Improve your chances of being selected for interview
- Overcome limited or lack of medical sales experience
- Develop and use your “Brag” book
- Tell a compelling story of your future successes
Connecting the Dots….
A resume may be the most important piece of literature used for self-promotion during your transition. It’s also the most challenging piece of the puzzle for some. This step is focused on creating a “killer “resume and projecting it out in the job market through networking and other channels. The only purpose of your resume is to get you the interview. Once you are in the interview, your 30-60-90 day business plan will let them know you are not only ready to hit the ground running, but also that you have a reproducible system to increase business. This is often underappreciated, but critical to the hiring process.
This step will help you:
- Improve your chances of getting an interview with your resume & cover letter
- Prepare an effective 30-60-90-day plan
- Understand communication styles used during interviews
- Integrate your business plan into your story
- Answer difficult interview questions
The final step gives key tips and strategies on closing the interview. This is where the decision to hire you is made. You will review different interview formats and preparation before, during, and after the interview process. Other topics include how to turn the interview around, the importance of staying in touch after the interview, and common interview challenges to avoid. You can wrap things up by fine-tuning your search strategy and creating a job search marketing plan that you can share while networking. This marketing plan is the best self-promotion piece you can use while educating others on how they can help you transition into medical device sales.
This step will give you advice for:
- Successful interview strategies (SOAR format)
- Closing the interview
- Follow–up tips and plan
- Creating a job search marketing plan
- Preparing your next steps
If you would like more help, I do offer a workshop designed for sales professionals who are transitioning or entering into the medical device industry that might be helpful, https://www.salesplusmvp.com/break-into-medical-device-sales-workshop/
Please stay in touch and let me know how things are coming along, or if I can help in any way.
All the best,