Gotta get thru this

pharmafield logo - pharma news

 The UK pharmaceutical sales force and Daniel Bedingfield don’t seem to have that much in common on first inspection. Or do they…

It’s in our nature to want to succeed and develop. All of us have experienced a winning mentality somewhere along the way. While we might not always show it, all of us want to have a metaphorical gold medal around our necks. There’s nothing better than being the best.

Pf’s Company Perception, Motivation and Satisfaction Survey celebrated its 10th anniversary last year. From 2001 onwards, salary has always ruled the roost where motivation is concerned. It makes the world go round in the medical sales industry. But back then, closely on its coattails was personal development. Opportunities were there for employees, promotions were available and money was to be made. Even Daniel Bedingfield earned his first number one in the charts! A decade on, nobody cares about personal development anymore. Even Bedingfield can’t get thru this.

Last year’s survey results showed personal development was voted as the ninth most important motivational factor – participants admitted they appreciated a pat on the back more than improving their own skills. A year before that it struggled to get in the top ten motivating factors. Driving a nice car was more important.

So what changed in a decade? Why did employees within the medical sales industry stop wanting to progress with their own careers and be happy to sit and count their wages? When did they become content to stay on the same rung of the ladder? Standing still gets you nowhere in life.

A lothas to do with job security. After years of ‘streamlining’ and workforce reductions, why take the risk taking on a new position, especially at a new company? Everyone knows it’s last in, first out, right? Personal development has been pushed to the back burner in favour of putting food on the table – you can’t blame people for adopting this mentality.

However, it can’t stay like this forever. In the modern day healthcare environment there’s a requirement for sales executives to learn new skills to deal with very real challenges. Personal development has again got to take priority. Those standing still and happy to use the same techniques, which may have served them adequately over the last ten years, will quickly be overtaken by those aiming for that metaphorical gold medal. Yet it doesn’t have to be like this.

Personal development doesn’t have to take over your life. Online literature has made it easier than ever to learn new skills or techniques whilst you’re taking a break on the road or from the comfort of your sofa. Alternatively, convenient day courses provide timely refreshers. This month’s issue of Pf – out on 27 March – offers advice from experts on how to up-skill in the current environment. You’ll learn that personal development has never been more important.

One thing is for sure, the sales force cannot maintain its apathy towards training and development. In a changing market, we gotta get thru this.

The 2011/2012 survey is now open. Have your say on what matters the most to you here.