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My Medical Device Sales Career

Building a Great Medical Sales Brag Book! Does yours Measure up?

Job Candidates often will know what a Brag Book is or at least a fuzzy concept of what it should be; it is the best vehicle available to support the content you have placed within your resume. Simply put, it is a book that say’s “Yep, I really did win all those sales awards and no lie, my resume is 100% true!”. It is becoming increasingly important and needed to be added to our Blog given the high statistics of inaccurate at best, to down right lies that some people will put on their resumes! It is for this reason that a Brag Book has quickly become a mandatory part of the Medical Sales Interview process and can be critical to moving beyond the first interview.

Often, I will have candidates tell me, “No, I don’t have time to put a Brag Book together, but I do have a bunch of great stuff in a file folder that I can pick through during the interview or leave behind”. I quickly tell them that if they were interviewing in the 1980’s or even the 1990’s that would be fine, but not now.

The preparation you put into a Brag Book becomes ONE OF the items a Hiring Manager is looking at during the entire interview process; it becomes a reflection of time spent in preparation of selling yourself and probably an indicator of how you will prepare for sales presentations in the field with potential customers. Everything you prepare or not prepare is being scrutinized by the Hiring Manager and does influence their decision making during the interview process!

In addition to your Master Brag Book (your Holy Grail of original paperwork) that will serve as your presentation piece during the interview, you should also make “leave behind” copies and offer that to your interviewer. NEVER leave the original!

There are many ways to prepare a Brag Book, here are a few suggestions:

  1. The Cover of your Brag Book should be worthy of the content. You know the saying, ”Don’t judge a book by it’s cover”, well not in this case! The Cover is part of the First Impression and you want it to stand out as a “Wow”:
    • A clear front notebook with rings is acceptable, it is not a WOW, but will do in a pinch.
    • An inexpensive Kinko’s Bound Page version has more WOW.
    • Your Master Copy, can be either of the two above, but a BIG WOW is a custom Leather Binder with your name engraved on the cover that can be updated and used throughout the years; merely leave the plastic notebook version or Kinko’s Bound Version as the “leave behind copy” for the Hiring Manager.
  2. Always include an Index Page with Tabs by Subject.
  3. Suggested Subject Categories:
    • Resume (place another Copy under the first Tab, you may want to include a Cover Letter)
    • Sales Awards, with corporate documentation listed by most recent year (Award photo’s and etc.)
    • Sales Rankings, Year End National Rankings only, again corporate generated rankings
    • Performance Reviews (only most recent 2 or 3 IF THEY ARE STELLAR and no negativity)
    • Most Recent Field Trip Letters from your Manager (Again, only if they are praise worthy)
    • Notes of Commendable Performance (Notes from your Management Team on a Job Well done)
    • Promotions, again organized from most recent with formal announcement letters, memo’s and etc.
    • Reference Letters (from your previous Direct Report Managers).
    • Customer Reference Letters (only if they are valued customers from the hiring company’s industry)
    • Reference Contact Information (direct report managers, dates reported to, all of their contact info.)

Remember, you don’t need ALL of these items, but you do need the items that will sufficiently support your resume information AND present you in a favorable light. If there is a certain Skill Set your hiring company is looking for, like the ability to host large customer functions, then add that as a tab and include the documentation of all the great Doctor Meetings you have put together.

Lastly, make sure you have reviewed all of your documentation and try to think of yourself as a hiring manager reading through it the first time; does it cast you in a favorable light, have you read every word (especially on your Performance Reviews) so you can be prepared for detailed questioning by the Hiring Company? If you have any question on a document piece, then take it out of the book and make it an optional item you can decide to use separately if needed in the interview.

Your Brag Book can separate you from the rest of the Candidate Pack, especially if you have strong Sales Performance and can show how valued you are by your current or past Management Teams. If Hiring Managers accept a copy of your Brag Book, I assure you they will thumb through it after their interview day and it will help them remember you for consideration for the valued second interview.

A Brag Book constructed and presented correctly can help you not only advance to the Second Round interview, but ultimately win you a New Sales Job in Medical Device Sales!

Download Word Doc. Article Here: Building a Great Medical Sales Brag Book.docx

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Tags: brag book tips, interviewing skills

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