How To Take Charge Of Your Pharmaceutical Career

How To Take Charge Of Your Pharmaceutical Career

by Chris Atkinson in career
The New Year is almost upon us, which means that for many in the pharma field, it’s time to look at how you’d like to take control of your career in the coming 12 months. 

Whether you’re in sales, regulation, marketing, or medical, there’s always room to exert more influence and accelerate your climb up the career ladder.  

1. Become A Master Networker 

It’s not what you know, but who you know, right? We’ve all heard it, and for ill or for good, it’s just as true in life sciences as it is in any other industry.  

Doors merely open easier for the well-connected. Whereas for others, all the doors seem jammed shut.  

The extent of your influence is entirely within your grasp. The life sciences field is vast and the scope for networking limitless, whether you’re wanting to attend more conferences, get busy online, or set up some speaking engagements. 

The goal is to make your name carry more professional currency by the end of 2018 than it does right now. So how will you grow your reputation?  

Increase your LinkedIn presence 

LinkedIn is a networker’s delight. Not only can you easily extend your network by growing your connections, but you also can get involved in relevant groups in your field and comment on the forums.  

If you’re planning to take this step really seriously, opt for LinkedIn’s professional membership, which will allow you to see who’s been viewing your profile, send messages to non-contacts, and see how your skills compare to other candidates when applying for jobs. 

Attend seminars, and conferences  

You just don’t know what you’re going to learn or who you’re going to meet at these things.  

There are an abundance of pharma events for you to attend, and your next incredible opportunity could find you in the queue for the lunch buffet, or when you ask a salient question at the end of a presentation.  

So ignore your mother’s advice and talk to strangers, and create a great impression by listening in return. Take business cards, but give them out selectively, and remember to take notes about the people you meet along the way so you don’t forget.  

Even better, you can volunteer to speak at an event, thereby growing your reputation as an expert. 

2. Keep Learning 

Connections will only get you so far…and regardless, the way to impress those connections in the first place is by making yourself a subject matter expert.  

It’s time to study up, attend conferences (networking as you go), and keep abreast of research and trends in your sector.  

Before too long, you’ll find that when you talk, people listen, because you’re armed with engaging, salient information about their field. 

3. Speak To A Specialist Recruiter 

There’s no better way to find out about ways to develop your career in the coming year than by talking to a specialist pharmaceutical recruitment company. They’ll be able to look at your CV and see which areas you could develop to your advantage or where you need to fill some gaps, as well as share some insights on career paths you might not have thought about.  

A good life sciences recruiter is a valuable ally who can recommend you for excellent opportunities so choose a specialist who  has an excellent reputation in the market, you feel you connect with and  who understands your goals. Speaking of which……. 

4. Set The Goals That Matter 

So many healthcare professionals follow the career paths they think they should have, rather than the ones they really want. Make sure your career goals reflect your personal goals.  

Know WHY you’re working in your current role 

Goal setting is easier when you know why you’re doing it. Is it to become known in your field? Is it for job security to pay your mortgage and provide for your family?  

Think about what you love about your job 

By this, I mean the tasks that make the hours fly by, without you even noticing. If you’re considering a change in your career this year, you’re going to want to try to find a role that maximises the time spent doing your in-flow activities, even if that means moving into a different line of sales, or from management back into a sales role.  

Don’t be tied to what you think should be your career role, or get caught up in what others think might be a demotion or promotion. Follow your own path, and make sure it’s doing something you enjoy.  

Maximise your chances of success with smart goal setting 

When planning your goals for 2018, make sure your goals are specific and time measurable, with lots of ‘mini-goals’ along the way. Human motivation tends to be short-lived, so break up your big, vague goals into a lot of small, time specific goals, and be sure to celebrate along the way.  

Some productivity experts recommend following a 90 day goal plan, as this time scale is short enough to feel urgent, but long enough to achieve something of substance.  

Be sure to write your goals down, and refer to them often 

The mere act of writing goals down makes it more likely we’ll achieve them, and it’s more useful if you keep your goals somewhere where you’ll look at them regularly. Schedule an unbreakable appointment with yourself each week to look over your goals and track your progress.  

With the right career strategy encompassing networking, knowledge and goal-setting, you can maximise your influence and become a rising star of the pharma industry in 2018.

About Kinetic

Kinetic source professionals locally and internationally for leading multinational, regional and local Pharmaceutical companies, including Consumer Healthcare organisations.

Kinetic understands the niche requirements for all specialisms of this ever-increasing regulated industry. To find out more about how we can support you in your recruitment campaign or help you land your next career progression contact us here.
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