The Kindle edition of Daniel Danielian’s “A-Z: How to Break into the Pharmaceutical Industry” is currently available for just $2.99. It’s a well-reviewed guide that provides advice for getting your start as a pharmaceutical sales representative. It’s a quick read, and the formatting on Kindle is a little wonky (but not in a way that affects readability) but it gives a really good overview of what a medical sales job is all about and what’s required to be a success. On the other hand, it’s not the right book to turn to if you’re looking for resume advice, as it basically starts with the assumption that you’ve managed to get an interview — which for some people is the toughest part of “breaking in”.
On the whole, I would say that the price is right for this solid little introduction to a pharmaceutical sales career.
Posted: August 10th, 2011 | Author: Headhunter | Filed under: Sales | Tags: book review, medical sales, pharmaceutical sales, Sales | No Comments »
Readers of this blog may remember Jane Chin, who provided some insightful commentary on the realities of a career as a Medical Science Liaison.
Jane has recently published a book which sounds very interesting: PhD [alternative] Career Clinic Read the rest of this entry »
Posted: June 11th, 2011 | Author: Headhunter | Filed under: Medical Science Liaisons | Tags: book review, career, PhD, transition | No Comments »
One of the hardest things about making the transition from graduate school or the laboratory bench to a great job in the real world — like a pharmaceutical or biotech career, for example — is figuring out how to make your academic experience relevant to employers.
This article, “A Resume Makeover” from the journal Science has been online for more than 10 years, but offers great, practical advice on how to review and revise your CV to fit the needs of employers. The example provided isn’t about a pharmaceutical job but the advice still fits!
Read the rest of this entry »
Posted: March 23rd, 2011 | Author: Headhunter | Filed under: Resumes & CVs | Tags: book review, CV, PhD, resumes, transition | No Comments »
When you’re applying for a job in the biotechnology sector, one of the best ways to set yourself apart from the competition is through the knowledge of the industry you bring to the table.
If you’ve ever thought of taking your PhD into the world of high finance, or dreamed of starting your own company someday, then the free e-book, The Entrepreneur’s Guide to a Biotech Startup is a must-read — but understanding how all the different parts of a biotech company work together will help you in your biotech career no matter what you do.
No job exists in a vacuum. You may be applying for a job as a preclinical scientist, but if you understand how the work you do at the bench relates to the rest of the company — intellectual property, regulatory affairs, technology transfer and more — then you are in a position to deliver real value.
The Guide is a phenomenal resource for understanding how biotech companies are put together. The author, Peter Kolchinsky, is a Harvard-trained virologist who finished his PhD and began working as an investment analyst in the biotech sector. The guide clearly explains how biotech firms are built from the ground up, beginning with an idea, and moving chapter by chapter through the business plan, legal issues, staffing, public relations, business development and more, all the way to raising capital and going public with an IPO. The chapters on drug pricing principles and clinical development are fantastic introductions to these fields for anyone exploring a career in health economics or clinical research.
The book closes with a brief note on networking, and I think the closing paragraphs are too good not to share:
“Knowing someone involves more than remembering their face and name. Well-networked people . . . find opportunities to interact with the same people on multiple occasions. Like a finger-drawing on a fogged window, a network must be traced and retraced or else it disappears.”
The best thing about the guide? It’s free! You just need to register at Evelexa BioResources, a site full of information about biotech ventures, and you’ll be able to download it as a PDF.
Posted: January 20th, 2009 | Author: Headhunter | Filed under: Resources | Tags: biotech, book review, clinical development, entrepreneur, finance, health economics, networking, startup | No Comments »
Here’s another great resource for your pharmaceutical job search: Career Opportunities in Biotechnology and Drug Development, by Toby Freedman.
Freedman has put together a solid resource for finding jobs and developing your career in the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industry. At 409 hardcover pages, this isn’t the kind of book you can slip in a pocket to browse on the subway — it’s a comprehensive guide that I could see being an invaluable aide to finding your first job in the biotech industry.
Early chapters on resume writing and interview techniques, including informational interviewing, are brief but well-written and useful. If you’ve read a lot of career guides, these chapters probably aren’t going to teach you anything you haven’t heard before. The real meat of this book is the industry-specific information that follows.
In an excellent overview chapter, Freedman explains the breadth of the industry, and summarizes the different product development pathways followed by therapeutic, nontherapeutic, and medical device companies.
Next, individual chapters, each about 20 pages long, cover a wide range of career pathways: drug discovery, preclinical research, project management, clinical development, medical affairs, regulatory affairs, quality assurance and quality control, operations, product development, business development, sales, marketing, and corporate communications. Chapters on executive management, legal affairs, finance, management consulting and even recruiting round out this comprehensive guide.
Each chapter includes ‘snapshots’ of various roles and offers a thoughtful analysis of both the positive and negative aspects of a given job. For example, in clinical development, Freedman notes that “Original and applied clinical research is exciting. Outcomes are unknown until trials are completed, and each trial is unique. Your work is close to the market”, but “There is frequent pressure to meet constantly looming deadlines, and the objectives often seem to be ‘too much, too soon, with too little'”. When you’re just starting out, and trying to decide what path to follow, knowing the downside of a job can be very useful information.
Naturally, salaries and compensation are a matter for discussion, as is the potential for career development, and a look at how future trends might influence job security for each role is useful in today’s economic times.
Perhaps most usefully for job seekers, Freedman clearly lays out job requirements and typical pathways into the role, and offers tips that could be helpful for getting one’s foot in the door. Descriptions of what it takes to excel in a role, and qualities common to good candidates are also helpful.
This guide isn’t cheap, and it isn’t very portable — but if you are looking for a career in the pharmaceutical and biotech sector, this book should be at your side.
Posted: January 14th, 2009 | Author: Headhunter | Filed under: Clinical research, Interviewing, Marketing, Medical Science Liaisons, Preclinical R&D, Regulatory affairs, Resources, Resumes & CVs | Tags: biotechnology, book review, career, freedman, jobsearch | No Comments »