My Medical Device Sales Career
Hi Ms. Hertz, I am a grad student at UCLA (PhD Biomedical Engineering). Upon completion of my degree in July, I am very interested in medical device sales. I was wondering if you had advice for someone with a very strong technical background, but no sales experience. Regards, Peter B.
Hello Peter and thank you for your question and congratulations on your upcoming graduation! We sometimes do get medical device sales jobs that require a biomedical engineering background. Also, sometimes new Engineering graduates do get that first job out of college in medical sales. As a new Sales Trainer years ago I was assigned a very young engineer who had been interviewing initially with our parent company, a large chemical company, for an engineering position. Her interviewers found her "So bubbly, vibrant and full of energy" that they thought she may be better suited to the sales side of the business! Looking back all these years later, they were right! Susan had a great career as a medical device sales representative and upward promotions into management!
So as I reflect on your question, "How does a new Biomedical Engineering graduate can break into medical device sales?", I must say that I think there may be many ways to do so. Let's do a quick review.
Biomedical Engineer Strategy for Breaking Into Medical Device Sales
YOUR COLLEGE PLACEMENT OFFICE
UTILIZE LINKEDIN TO IDENTIFY HOT LEADS
IDENTIFY ALL THE TOP BIOMEDICAL ENGINEERING COMPANIES
GOING THE "BUSINESS TO BUSINESS" SALES ROUTE
I am sure there may be other ways to crack into medical device sales than the above, but this should give you a good start and some direction. Remember there is always one component that will help you get into the sales side of the business and it has to do with your personality and communication skills. Most company cultures embrace the outgoing personality who exude energy and a "can do" attitude who welcome the challenge of approaching people and knocking on doors.
As my former company told me all those years ago, "We have an engineer that should be a sales person." There is something to be said about that and it should not be ignored. If you find that you have the personality traits that would embrace the spirit of an outside sales person, then use those traits to do the same thing to find that first medical device sales job right out of college.
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