Your goal is to be on the same page – to achieve and sustain true business alignment. However, it’s common for pharmaceutical sales organizations to roll out strategic and thoughtful initiatives that get off course soon after they are launched. Without team alignment, you’ll immediately start to see frustration and conflict between sales teams that need each other, and flatlined results for your organization.
Establishing high-performing pharmaceutical sales organizations takes time.
But, there are several things you can do today to ensure change does happen reliably and sustainably. It all starts with an open mind towards new ideas and the willingness to consistently apply best practices across your pharmaceutical sales organization.
Many companies boast about their cultures of innovation. They incorporate creativity and openness into their mission or values statements. They reward employees for new insights and ideas. They hire and promote for innovation. Yet despite such measures, they find that their teams remain stubbornly locked in place, struggling to generate new ideas and to execute even minor change initiatives.
My friend was frazzled. She had joined a large, consumer-facing organization, where she was immersed in the exciting work of redesigning the customer journey map. But she faced a major obstacle. Line managers were accustomed to doing business the old way. They knew how to get things done in that environment. They felt comfortable with leading and managing outcomes. How could she help these managers through the trouble and emotional turmoil of learning something new even as they continued to deliver on significant business expectations?
Several years ago, we surveyed two dozen CEOs about what they thought were personal qualities instrumental to successful leadership. Their reflections on this topic surfaced 6 Personal Qualities Instrumental to Successful Leadership. Here they are –
Is your company stormproof?
The storm I’m talking about isn’t a tornado or hurricane, but rather a “perfect storm” in the battle for talent. A tightening labor market combined with baby boomer retirements is adding up to significant talent gaps at many companies. Younger workers are often not ready to take over in leadership positions. Meanwhile, they are becoming frustrated with perceived shortfalls in the leadership development opportunities available at many companies.
Have you heard about Adobe’s Kickbox? It’s a little red box filled with materials that take employees through a six-step, self-guided innovation process. Employees who have a new idea they want to pursue take a workshop and then proceed through the stages of innovation on their own. Each box contains a credit card with $1000 in seed money.
Do you remember that line, from a 1978 public service announcement encouraging viewers to join the Peace Corps? (Hint – “It’s the toughest job you’ll ever love”) Well, it seems like it might also readily apply to the CEO job. Our survey of executives found that being CEO was much tougher than our executives ever imagined, but also much more rewarding.
First, the tough part. The CEO job is demanding in every sense of the word, requiring physical, mental, and emotional stamina. “I had no idea how physically demanding the job would be,” one CEO told us. “For this job, I need to be energetic, focused, and disciplined.”
As a new CEO, you can’t do it all alone. While you might have the authority to make the company’s strategic decisions, you will never have all the information you need to make them nor the time required to implement them. That’s why one of your first jobs should be to select your senior team—and to do it well. As one participant in our CEO study observed, “You can never have too good of a team. Upgrading the talent makes a magnitude of change in the organization. You probably never have a team as good as you think you have, and you can always improve your team.”