Better Training The Key To Success In New Medical Device Sales Model

Why Is Better Training The Key To Success In New Medical Device Sales Model?

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Rapid technological advances and an ever-shifting marketplace require a nimble and forward-thinking approach to medical device sales. Companies frequently are adopting new technologies in response to how selling in the industry is changing.

The most critical component of any implementation is the training that goes along with it. Product- or feature-based training no longer is enough. The key is to train everybody how to use the tool in relation to how they do their work. That means an end user would be trained differently than a manager.

An article on the Medical Device and Diagnostic Industry website lists three steps that can help ensure that the company?s first-line management (FLM) team is equipped for the work required and given every opportunity to thrive.

  1. Define roles clearly from the top down, leaving no question about hierarchy and decision-making responsibility.
  2. Select people whose skill sets fall into line with those required of managers, which does not necessarily mean promoting the best sales people into management positions.
  3. Providing sufficient resources and ongoing skills development. This is particularly important for managers who lack experience or are relatively unfamiliar with the corporate culture.

One way to ensure that managers are sufficiently supported is to put the right customer relationship management (CRM) system in place. Managing by spreadsheets, phone calls and emails is considerably different with the right CRM system.

On the other hand, the shiny new system will only be effective if users are trained how to use it in the context of the way they work. Otherwise, they?ll simply fall back into their old habits and the company won?t gain the full value of the system.

One of the major oversights in training that we see is for managers ? specifically, how to manage with these new tools and technologies. One of the greatest risks of failure is to roll out a new system but not teach the managers how to manage using the tools. After all, if an end user?s manager is not using the tool and encouraging use, then people tend to fall back on what they know. This all too often leads to a failed implementation of the CRM tool.

By following the steps above and integrating the sales force with a reliable, comprehensive CRM system, medical product manufacturers can take advantage of an under-leveraged opportunity in the industry ? a well-trained, fully attuned FLM team nimble enough to adjust to the ever-shifting medical device industry.

Source: Medical Device and Diagnostic Industry Online, March 2013

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