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Posts Tagged ‘Pharmaceutical’

Some of your vendor-partners are great at more limited learning initiatives – but what if you need something with greater breadth and depth, like a global learning program?

That’s when you need a training partner with a deeper pool of resources.

Today’s case study is how one of Impactiviti’s premier partner companies executed a global eLearning program for a Consumer Healthcare client.

>> Case study_Global Learning Program

CaseStudyGlobaleLearning

Reach out to us here at Impactiviti (973-947-7429) for any outsource training needs you have – we’ll be happy to recommend an optimal partner!

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Impactiviti provides vendor-client “matchmaking” services in the life sciences training area, built on a unique trusted referral network model. We consult and provide vendor advice at no charge for life science companies. Contact Steve Woodruff at asksteve@impactiviti.com

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Last night over a glass of wine on our back patio, I gave my wife a glowing report about the LTEN conference (from which I had just returned). And it struck me afresh how upbeat this year’s event truly was.

I mean, it was in Scottsdale, Arizona – so how could things NOT be bright and sunny?

LTEN Scottsdale

I know that the LTEN staff (always great to see Dawn, Christine, Miki, Gregg, Nanette, and Tim!), who worked so hard on the event, were thrilled with the attendance numbers, including a growing number of folks from medical device and other related companies.

LTEN crowd

Board Members and Advisors were actively engaged throughout the week, constantly visible in sessions and on the exhibit floor.

LTEN Board

John Constantine, Corey Padovano, Jim Page

This was John Sjovall’s last conference serving as President, although his imitation of Elton John (LTEN John – get it?) did not put him on a yellow brick road to Vegas for nightclub bookings, we all appreciated his steady leadership over the past two years.

LTEN John Sjovall

This year, I didn’t attend a lot of workshops, instead focusing on networking with individuals on both the client and vendor/partner sides. And that was wonderful. In fact, the main keynote was by Keith Ferrazzi, on the building of community through networking. Keith’s material was solid and very practical – I’m always going to applaud encouragements to build professional networks.

The most creative and interesting workshop that I did attend was put on by the folks at Campbell Alliance Learning Solutions (John Bye and Celeste Mosby) – a very cool board game to teach market access fluency. Some of the talks I attended were too didactic, but this one was full of energy as the various teams worked together to try to figure out where the decision-making power resided in a simulated managed markets setting.

And then there was the conference app – a quantum leap above any other mobile application we’ve had in the past. This one, created by DoubleDutch, encouraged direct person-to-person interaction and easy posting of updates/photos. For years, getting social media integrated into the LTEN conference has been a slow ride, but I think we finally crossed the river this year. Utilization of the app was off the charts!

LTEN SW Jim

The evening social events (Monday and Wednesday nights) were very pleasant and relaxed networking times. Monday was a bit weak on the food side of the spectrum, but Wednesday certainly was not! The Learning Labs (mini sessions in the exhibit hall during lunch hours) seemed to be received quite well; and, for the first time, there were LTEN Excellence Awards, including posters of entries. Nice touch.

Since my Impactiviti business is about matchmaking life sciences companies with optimal vendor/partners, I tend to spend a lot of time on the exhibit floor, interacting with my many vendor friends. Having been on the provider side for many years, I’m acutely sensitive to the mood of our vendor colleagues, and often there have been complaints about how little traffic there is in the exhibit hall. But this year, we seemed to hit an inflection point. The mood among vendors was very upbeat, all week – lots of solid interaction happening. I think the combination of better scheduling (more free time in the hall); a simple and intuitive layout of the facility (exhibit hall centrally positioned and all meeting rooms extremely close); and the lack of “outside” distractions at this particular resort made for a much better community experience. Also, it was a privilege to be able to connect many vendors and clients “live” at the conference, which is always a highlight of my year.

Next year’s event will be held June 13-16 at the Gaylord National D.C. Resort; for our friends in Medical Device and Diagnostics companies, there is a gathering in Chicago this year on October 6-7.

Do you want to stay updated throughout the year on the latest life sciences training news and resources? Subscribe right here to the twice-monthly Impactiviti e-newsletter and get better connected to your community! And call on me at any time for advice on your training needs: asksteve@impactiviti.com

-Steve Woodruff, President, Impactiviti – the eHarmony of Life Sciences Training

Are we connected yet on LinkedIn?

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As I talk to business leaders – owners of small businesses, leaders of departments, etc. – one common theme emerges. It’s the power of the immediate to derail long-term strategic direction.

Tyranny of the UrgentIt has several aliases:

  • Tyranny of the Urgent
  • Reactive Thinking
  • Tactical Overwhelm
  • The Daily Grind (also useful for coffee references)

Call it what you will, it boils down to the fact that being in the weeds of day-to-day execution tends to obscure our long-term thinking. We lose sight of the goal.

In ice hockey, have you ever seen those scrums on the boards where several players are piled up, all kicking at the puck (and whacking each other’s ankles)? The focus is entirely on that little piece of ice and that rubber disk – no-one’s looking at the goal.

Ever felt that way during the week? Yeah, I thought so. Bad for the ankles, I find.

Losing sight of the forest while in the trees is a very common leadership struggle. In fact, for my friends who lead Training and Development groups in biopharma companies, one of the ways in which this is accentuated is the perception that T&D is a “servant” department – Sales and/or Marketing tosses stuff over the wall for Training to execute. No strategic alignment need get in the way of the “Need it NOW!” ;>((

As a solopreneur, I have to fight this battle all the time. I get immersed in low- or no-return activities that pop up in front of me instead of staying on track. I fail to keep my focus on the clients, partners, and opportunities that are most productive long-term. I have to remind myself constantly what really matters – and even then it’s still way too easy to lose sight of the goal.

What about you? How do you stay on track in the midst of the reactive mode that presses in on you daily? Share your tips and practices for the rest of us to learn from!

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I’ve made the case in the past that one of the secret ingredients missing in most training organizations is having someone in place to head up Operations.

And a big piece of that is bringing on real project managers (not just rotational sales trainers thrown into the lion’s den of managing projects).

Here’s a good start – Takeda’s recent posting for a project management position:

Takeda PM job

If every biopharma training dept. had the right kind of person occupying a role like this, I guarantee that the savings realized would far exceed the salary expended.

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As human beings, we always have a tendency to pop on our rose-colored glasses and talk about the “good old days.”

Remember the good old days, when pharmaceutical manufacturers were almost constantly growing and profitable? When expansion was the norm, not the exception? When a career arc was fairly secure unless you really fouled it up?

Now it’s all about lean. Entire sales forces drastically cut, or eliminated, or re-organized. Career people suddenly without careers. Downsizing sometimes feels more like capsizing.

We’re on a roller coaster these days, and with all the turmoil of the ever-shifting healthcare environment, that’s not changing anytime soon.

rollercoaster

So what is a pharmaceutical professional to do?

Do yourself a huge favor. Build your network. Build it now, even long before you end up looking for a new professional direction.

There is no corporate safety net. There is only your opportunity network.

I’ve given small and large workshops on professional network-building to industry audiences, and have also spoken to I don’t know how many dozens of colleagues in the industry who are having to re-assess their direction, usually unwillingly.

One very common regret – not pro-actively building a network ahead of time.

LinkedinUniversally, for our industry, I’ve pointed to LinkedIn as the best place to build your professional network. Don’t worry too much about Twitter and some of the other avenues (unless you’re deep into social media for other reasons). There are ways to be effective using LinkedIn that any intelligent person can employ without a huge investment of time.

This is where your colleagues are. You contacts outside the industry that should be cultivated. And probably, your next job.

If you’re in our industry, feel free to connect with me and let me know what you’re seeking to accomplish. I’ve built the Impactiviti network for you, not just me. We’re a bunch of us helping each other find what we need – not just optimal vendors, but new professional opportunities.

Get IN and let’s get started

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Pharma and biotech sales (and training) leaders, take note: the FDA is actively training doctors to sniff out your transgressions and turn you in.

The FDA has recently launched an e-learning course in order to educate the medical community on misleading drug promotions.

From the FDA’s press release: The FDA’s Office of Prescription Drug Promotion announced Monday the launch, with MedScape, of the e-learning course, which offers continuing education credits for healthcare professionals. The course is part of Bad Ad, a program designed in 2010 to raise awareness about misleading and untruthful drug ads. It’s aimed at healthcare professionals, but anyone can take it, the agency said. The office has developed several case studies based on warning letters the FDA has sent to drug companies, representing common problems.

You can launch the course here (anyone, in fact, can go through it). The screen shot below shows the structure of the course:

FDA course menu

Of particular interest is Module 5, where actors representing sales reps engage in questionable promotional practices to demonstrate violative sales tactics. This should be examined carefully by every commercial biopharma organization.

FDA Rep ecourse

Hat tip to Corey Nahman for the heads-up.

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