What’s on Your Mind — Opinions

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Opinions More on Leadership Development PharmaVOICE received such an overwhelming response to our leadership development opinion question — how executives throughout the industry develop leaders — for the April issue, we are pleased to publish additional insights on this hot topic. Entrepreneurialism at the local level There are many dimensions to successful businesses. At Brand Institute, we empower regional offices to operate in an entrepreneurial environment with the support of the corporate headquarters. Brand Institute’s business model affords clients’ local servicing and the consistency, control, accuracy, and timeliness of a centralized corporate support system. It is a winning solution to manufacturers’ branding needs. James L. Dettore President and CEO Brand Institute Leadership, a priority At Flashpoint Medica, leadership development is a top priority, as it really reflects on the agency’s future. From our past experience, we know that the best way to develop talent is to invest time in people’s careers and leadership potential. This means mentoring and coaching our top talent, providing role models, and giving people the right opportunities to develop their skills with clients and on projects. It also means allowing them room to grow and to make mistakes so they learn from them. Providing the right culture is an equally critical component of developing leaders. That’s why we encourage open discussions and debate and dialogue to help expand our staff’s thinking and develop their leadership potential. Along the way, we make sure to offer plenty of encouragement, so that employees can gain greater self-confidence in their ability to make decisions, act as leaders, and take action on their own. We also take advantage of outside seminars, encouraging key staff members to hear new ideas and learn new leadership skills. Additionally, we encourage our employees to take on leadership roles in industry volunteer organizations, which is another outlet that helps them develop additional skills and learn from their experiences. Investing in the agency and our staff sends a message that we value our employees and we want them to be part of our future leadership team — a vital intangible that builds morale, confidence, motivation, and satisfaction. Charlene Prounis Managing Partner and Copresident Flashpoint Medica Identify character traits While formal programs to develop leadership exist, they deal primarily with the skills that leaders need to function effectively, such as communicating clearly and effectively, developing the ability to analyze situations, and managing a staff effectively. While these are essential to a leader’s success, they do not, by themselves, make a leader. One of the most essential characteristics of leaders, for example, is their ability to take responsibility for their actions. Being able to say, “I made a mistake” is a crucial first step that gains respect from everyone. A second step, and one that clearly separates leaders from the pack, is their ability not only to spot problems, but also to solve them. Leaders also have the courage to make unpopular decisions they know are sound and to make critical, time-sensitive decisions when all efforts to get further information have been exhausted. At Adair-Greene, we believe that the key to developing leaders is to identify these traits early in people’s careers and nurture them over time. We look for professionalism and depth of knowledge, of course. But we also look for the kind of people who will continue to be patient, dedicated mentors for those under them, trusted advisors to our clients, and strong, positive forces for the agency as a whole. Jay Levy Executive VP, Chief Operating Officer Adair-Greene Healthcare Communications AN INDUSTRY IN CRISIS? The HBA’s April Seminar, hosted by GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), addressed the subject of restoring public trust in the pharmaceutical industry. A panel of executives, including Catherine A. Sohn, Pharm.D., Senior VP, Worldwide Business Development and Strategic Alliances, GSK Consumer Healthcare; Nancy J. Pekarek, VP, U.S. Corporate Media, Corporate Communication, GSK; Donald Phillips, Pharm.D., CEO, Vox Medica; Beth Herskovits, Health Reporter, PR Week; and Christopher A. Viehbacher, President, U.S. Pharmaceuticals, GSK, who also was the guest speaker, discussed the challenges the industry faces. Some of the themes covered in the meeting focused on the need for the industry and its companies to: treat patients as customers; reach out to all stakeholders, including pharmacists and nurses; and increase awareness of the benefits that the industry brings to public health. Another key take-away was the need for companies to proactively teach their own employees how to be good “ambassadors.” PharmaVOICE wants to know: Does your company have a program to teach employees how to be industry ambassadors and advocates? What’s your opinion? Please e-mail your comments to feedback@pharmavoice.com. AN INDUSTRY IN CRISIS? The HBA’s April Seminar, hosted by GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), addressed the subject of restoring public trust in the pharmaceutical industry. A panel of executives, including Catherine A. Sohn, Pharm.D., Senior VP, Worldwide Business Development and Strategic Alliances, GSK Consumer Healthcare; Nancy J. Pekarek, VP, U.S. Corporate Media, Corporate Communication, GSK; Donald Phillips, Pharm.D., CEO, Vox Medica; Beth Herskovits, Health Reporter, PR Week; and Christopher A. Viehbacher, President, U.S. Pharmaceuticals, GSK, who also was the guest speaker, discussed the challenges the industry faces. Some of the themes covered in the meeting focused on the need for the industry and its companies to: treat patients as customers; reach out to all stakeholders, including pharmacists and nurses; and increase awareness of the benefits that the industry brings to public health. Another key take-away was the need for companies to proactively teach their own employees how to be good “ambassadors.” PharmaVOICE wants to know: Does your company have a program to teach employees how to be industry ambassadors and advocates? What’s your opinion? Please e-mail your comments to feedback@pharmavoice.com. What’s on your mind

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