Complex Challenges: Strong Leaders

Contributed by:

Taren Grom, Editor

NOTE: The content below contains the first few paragraphs of the printed article and the titles of the sidebars and boxes, if applicable.

Today’s life-sciences industry is a complex, ever-evolving amalgamation of serious challenges to be met and surpassed. To forge ahead and succeed, the industry needs strong leaders who possess character, a commitment to public health, business acumen, and the willingness to mentor the next generation of healthcare professionals to address current and future challenges. The 2005 Healthcare Businesswomen’s Association’s (HBA) Rising Stars, who have been acknowledged by their managers, peers, and organizations for their outstanding leadership qualities, strategic thinking, and management skills are such a group of leaders. These women are an inspiration to others; they are motivated, intelligent, creative, and embody the best talent within the industry. PharmaVOICE congratulates this group of 52 exceptional leaders from throughout the industry — pharmaceutical, biotech, advertising, public relations, medical education, and market research. At what point did you realize that you had leadership qualities? And, how do you define leadership? I define leadership as: to lead is to serve. It is a leadership philosophy where the focus is on supporting those one manages to get results. Lisa Stockman Denise Cooke Organon Pharmaceuticals Effective leadership is not a destination; it is a journey. I am continuously working to develop my skills. I define leadership as the ability to tap into the positive qualities of others and maximize the contribution that those qualities can bring. Angela Lukin Wyeth Pharmaceuticals Leadership is about the destination and the journey. By that I mean it is about having a vision of the destination and motivating people to want to go on the journey with you. Having a vision is not good enough. As one of my colleagues once said, a person with only a vision is simply out for a walk. By sharing that vision and building a team approach on the path to be taken, a leader is not alone but part of a much larger force driving toward the same goal. Faith Osborn Newtonedge I have always felt like a leader, but through the experiences of being mentored and gaining increasing responsibility I came to take ownership of my role as a leader. It has been a process of gaining confidence, and through being challenged and succeeding, I learned how to challenge people and ideas to explore creative boundaries. Lisa Stockman Chandler Chicco I came into my own as a leader after having children. This gave me perspective and balance and made me more patient and empathic. I define leadership as: to lead is to serve. It is a leadership philosophy where the focus is on supporting those one manages to get results as well as figuring out what they need versus what you need from them. Tristen Herrstrom Ventiv Health In looking back on my career, it has become clear to me that good leaders fill voids and do not ask the questions, such as “Is this my job?” or “Is it my place to speak up?” Leaders take the initiative to guide people, processes, or strategic direction without thinking twice. Wanda Hope Ortho Biotech I’ve sought out opportunities to be a leader in many activities throughout my life. Whether it was student government, college organizations, or job related, I’ve always been willing to step up to the plate. Leadership is complex and requires a person to excel in multiple skills and competencies. Leadership is where vision, values, and valor come together. The leaders I try to emulate create aspiring visions, have the ability to inspire and motivate others, and have the courage to take risks. Natasha Alam Medsite I think everyone has the capacity to be a leader in some way. Leadership opportunities are there for all of us, but a person must choose to act. Leadership isn’t a role that can be switched on and off; it envelops all aspects of one’s life. I continue to grow into leadership by immersing myself in personal and professional challenges in which I am passionate and dedicated, and where I can impact the success of those around me. Sara Barnett Unlimited Performance Training I was fortunate to be offered the opportunity to go into management in every position I’ve held in my career. This acknowledgement by all of my managers has helped me realize that I have tremendous leadership potential. I believe a good leader is someone who understands the mistakes of the past, is not afraid to make changes in the present, and at the same time is able to dream big for the future. Meg Ainley Advanstar Medical Economics I’ve always had a very strong work ethic, and I think people naturally gravitate toward people who work hard. As I continued to develop my sales and leadership skills, I earned the trust of my coworkers and became a respected and valued member of the team. Leadership isn’t just having a vision for the future. My definition of leadership is the ability to effectively communicate the goals set for the group and to execute a plan for getting there. Tia Debon Dowden Health Media Success depends on the people one works with. It all starts with putting together a great team. A leader can serve the team by setting an agenda, by helping the team focus on goals and discover solutions, and by “pumping sunshine” to make sure the outlook stays positive. Denise Fulton International Medical News Group A key to successful leadership is the ability to find a commonsense solution to a complicated problem. I realized that I would become a leader when I found that my managers valued that ability and accepted my solutions, even though I was a junior member of the team at the time. Rebecca Cotton Impact RX During a tense meeting on an important project that now escapes me, my team and I had discussed the options for resolution and it was time to make a decision. In unison, the team all turned and looked at me as if I knew what to do. It made me realize that I was doing something right — my team trusted my judgment. I’ve known a few exceptional leaders, and they all possessed three qualities: the ability to make decisions, to set strategy, and to have determination. Kathleen Gaffney Elsevier Leadership is about communicating and connecting with people to achieve a common goal. A leader must embrace and react to change and have a strong propensity for action. But perhaps most importantly, a leader must also recognize his or her limitations. I think I’ve always had an inclination toward leadership, but it is most definitely an evolution. Leaders become stronger with each new experience, by emulating other leaders, and by taking risks in today’s changing business environment. Sonnie Kim Columbia Medcom I knew I was a leader when I realized that so many people sought out my opinion and asked for my recommendations — and actually took my advice. My favorite definition of leadership comes from the book, “The Radical Leap,” by Steve Farber. He states that great leaders: “cultivate love, generate energy, inspire audacity, and provide proof.” Rosemary McConnell Dorland Global Health From early on in my career, coworkers would come to me with questions or seek help with problems. In helping them find solutions, not only did it expand my role in the agency, it showed me that I could influence their professional growth, widen their expertise, and expand their knowledge base. I view leadership as a role to help others realize their true potential, to encourage and to guide them when needed, and to bring out the best in others, and in doing so I reach my own potential. I think my view of leadership has been influenced by my role in my own family, as the fifth of 10 children. As a middle child, I always saw every situation from both sides and learned to look at the big picture before selecting a path. Jo-Ann Straat Sankyo Pharma I think the realization of one’s leadership abilities comes slowly and only after seeing the results reflected in the reaction of others. For me, it happened when I was given leadership responsibility and was viewed by others as the leader. Leadership is the ability to create a clear vision of what needs to be done, to define the necessary steps to get there, and to inspire others to keep the organization moving in that direction. But I believe it’s more than being a visionary. A good leader always connects people to the organization and shows them how what they do contributes to its success. Making people feel included, valued, and at the center of things is the heart of effective leadership. Stephanie Sorine Wishbone-itp When people started coming to me for solutions, for inspiration, for a shoulder to lean on in the toughest of times, I realized I had what it takes to be a leader. To me, leadership means instilling passion in others so they are driven to succeed beyond their best. Tamra Micco Pace I realized I was a leader when I became the resident “go to” person for advice and direction on topics and issues. It was then that I realized that a large component of leadership was taking the time to listen to people, understanding their needs, and providing them with guidance and support to help them reach their goals. Christine D’Appolonia LLNS My leadership skills have developed over time; there was not one moment that defined me as a leader. For me, leadership is the art of bringing people together and inspiring them to achieve a common goal. Leadership means doing the right thing rather than just doing things right. When I lead, I encourage my colleagues to exceed expectations rather than meet them. Nanske Wood Carbon I’ve always been a very enthusiastic person — about life, about work, and about other people. I discovered over the years that my enthusiasm can be contagious, that people respond and want to be a part of activities and endeavors marked by enthusiasm, even passion. A leader is someone who has the ability to define important goals and the enthusiasm to make others want to participate in and achieve those goals. Lyn Falconio Grey Healthcare Group Being a leader means more than just having a vision. What’s important today is to have the flexibility to stay focused as things change and to build the type of infrastructure, both people and process, that continuously encourages the exploration of doing things in a different way. Equally important is the ability to move beyond the agency assets of creating a “big idea” and to put those ideas into practical use and everyday tools that will move the market. Carolyn Libretti Ernst & Young I only recently realized, after being nominated by my firm to participate in a women’s leadership development program, that I could be a successful leader. I have come to understand that having a title does not mean being a leader. Being a leader means having the highest integrity, taking responsibility, and being accountable. Lisa Pilla Novartis Pharmaceuticals One of the key ways a leader emerges is by developing a following. I define a leader as someone whom others choose to follow. I first realized I have what it takes to be a leader when I was in school, and other people I thought were leaders wanted to follow me. The characteristics that I frequently see in leaders are the 4 Cs: courage, commitment, effective communications, and the ability to make connections. I have always had a high level of courage and commitment. Through broader responsibilities and experiences, I have improved the effectiveness of my communication and my ability to be authentic, while still being professional, which has enabled me to make stronger connections with people. Lucille Fitzsimmons Businessedge Solutions I have always gravitated to leadership roles, so naming an exact moment of realization is difficult. I think I have a knack for seeing the big picture, combined with the attention to detail that being a leader ultimately entails. Leaders are compelled to find solutions to problems, take risks, have a good attitude, and are confident and principled. Leaders foster the ability in others to realize their potential. Cindy Russo schering-Plough I believed that I had the capacity to lead at a very young age. This was because of the significant role my father played in terms of providing me with inspiration and guidance. He taught me to think things through, evaluate the risks, and when it felt right to take chances. He taught me that it is through risk taking that we learn and grow. He also encouraged me to share my vision and to respect the vision of others. And, most importantly, my father taught me to always maintain my sense of humor, because having fun, no matter what the mission, should always be a central strategy. I define an effective leader as one who sets clear goals, communicates openly and frequently, and knows when to lead and when to work alongside others to achieve objectives. Leadership that ensures all perspectives and ideas are encouraged and listened to — followed by an equal level of diligence to ensure team alignment — is key. But the most important ingredient to effective leadership is sharing a positive, can-do attitude to inspire others, because believing you can reach the goal, more often than not, gets you more than halfway there. And when you do reach or surpass it, celebrate the people who made it happen. Now that you are in a position of influence, what is the one initiative that you would most like to accomplish? Eina Barnes Bench International The one initiative most important to me is, and has always been, the inclusion of women and ethnically diverse professionals at all levels of influence within the pharmaceutical and biotech sectors. Inclusion of diversity should not be a goal set to avoid EEOC problems or used as a gimmicky marketing tool to shine more brightly than one’s competitors. Embracing the inclusion of diversity means believing that a diverse workforce makes a better product, a better working environment, and ultimately a better world. Cira Montreys, Ph.D. International Meetings & Science Before my work in medical education, I spent more than 15 years in the clinical arena, working as a healthcare administrator and psychologist in programs for people with mental retardation and psychiatric disabilities. It’s very important for me to feel that my efforts continue to benefit patients, and I genuinely believe that medical education can do that. But just because an educational initiative is scientifically or creatively excellent doesn’t mean that it will change physician behaviors in ways that help patients. That’s the challenge that I face every day, and that’s the goal that is essential for me to accomplish. It’s also the most fun that I have at work. Lisa Morris IMS Health I went to school to become a pharmacist but continued my education with the thought that I would move out of the clinical setting and into the business side of the industry, basically applying my knowledge and experience to help advance the discovery, use, and acceptance of new medicines. The science behind the drug is vitally important, of course, but so is understanding where new therapies are used (or not), how they’re used, and where gaps exist (and why) in terms of underserved populations or discrete patient segments. Given this enormous opportunity to have an impact, I can’t point to one single initiative that I’d like to accomplish, but think I can make a meaningful contribution to achieving the overall goal of advancing the discovery and usage of new therapies, albeit in a nonclinical fashion. Lynn Shepherd Vox Medica As a woman in healthcare and as a mother, I am very concerned about the fact that too many children go without needed medicines and other healthcare because of disparities in access or even a lack of parental education and awareness about how to take advantage of programs and services that can help. Despite the advances in modern medicine, too many children here and abroad are suffering from illnesses that could either be prevented or treated earlier. I would like to work at both a policy and a community-outreach level to start eliminating disparities in care for children. Nanske Wood Carbon I am passionate in my belief that “doing well” as a business does not preclude “doing good” in and for the community. In fact, the two are related. The healthcare industry has a special obligation and a unique opportunity in this regard. Nancy Drescher Cline Davis & Mann The industry is experiencing a great deal of turmoil with respect to public opinion and perception. In many ways, the pharmaceutical industry is often viewed as “the new tobacco industry” because of public distrust of big pharma and pricing policies. Because of this, it is difficult to groom current employees to build future leaders who are interested in staying with the industry and striving to make a difference. Being in a position of influence, I would like to be able to have an impact on building and establishing these future leaders. As individuals running large accounts with even larger teams, it is easy to become myopic and only consider the business at hand, the current client roster, and/or the teams one directly influences. But to ensure that we develop future leaders for our company and industry, our sphere of influence must increase as well. Therefore, my goal is to initiate a formal mentoring program that strives to pass along the wealth of knowledge and experience from our company’s leaders to middle and junior management. My ultimate goal is to help ensure that the passion for our business, and the desire to impart meaningful change on the public through better health management, lives on through strong, talented, and knowledgeable successors. If successful, my next goal would be to share this mentoring program with others in the industry, perhaps through organizations such as the HBA, so we can all strive to keep the talent pool alive and thriving even through the tough times. Tamra Micco Pace The one initiative that is most important for me to accomplish is to continually grow the people that I manage. I constantly put myself in their shoes and challenge whether I am doing enough to help them grow. I try to mirror all the qualities of great managers I have had in the past, and I do whatever I can to cultivate good talent for future leadership opportunities. Judy Seraphine Promedica Communications The one initiative I would like to accomplish is the mentoring of other women in this field. I was mentored by two extremely wonderful and successful women in the medical-education business, and I would like to impart the knowledge I’ve learned from them over the years to others. Tiffany Ryan Palio Communications The most important initiative in my role as an account director is providing a team of professionals with opportunities that allow them to excel within their individual careers, while building trust within the team. Denise Cooke Organon Pharmaceuticals I have been very successful leading a sales team of 10. My next challenge is to successfully lead a project for a companywide sales initiative that will affect the entire field sales organization, which is greater than 500 people. I am looking forward to this opportunity as it will expand my capabilities and scope of influence. Meg Ainley Advanstar Medical Economics Drug Topics, the leading pharmacy journal that I publish, will be celebrating its 150th anniversary in January 2007. I’ve already begun plans for anniversary events and collectors’ editions. It definitely tops my list of important initiatives, and it’s exciting to be a part of history with a trusted journal. Catherine Geddes Roche My goal is to develop the premier, world-class sales organization that is recognized industrywide for its exceptional performance, expertise, and customer focus, as well as for selling with a spirit of compassion and integrity. I also want people on the sales team to feel they’re being recognized and appreciated for their contributions. Kharen Jones Communications Media I believe I can influence the way clients view and value media planning, because working at CMI has made me well versed in all types of media — from universe to targeted, online to outdoor advertising. As for my personal and professional initiatives, every day is a learning experience. I would like to continue to develop junior staff members and continue to contribute to the success of CMI. Gail Turner Guidant Hiring people around me who are as good or better than I am is one goal, and another is making sure that I have my successor chosen and trained. Who were the mentors or role models who played an important role in your leadership development? Eina Barnes Bench International The role model who has played an important part in my leadership development is my mother. I watched her shatter a glass ceiling by becoming the first woman and first African-American to serve as city clerk in our city. It wasn’t until much later in life that I realized how truly amazing the accomplishment was and what a great legacy she has left for me and for my hometown. But more importantly, by example she has shown me the importance of fighting for what I believe in through maintaining the highest level of integrity in all that I do and always being willing to do the hard and necessary things to achieve my goals. In my book, this is what a good leader does. My mother taught me values that I continue to bring to work and that help me make decisions every day, such as courtesy, respect, and a good work ethic. Rosemary McConnell Lauren Gaffney Dimensional Healthcare There are a few individuals who have contributed to the development of my leadership skills. The person who stands out the most was my father, an educational administrator whom I observed in a position of leadership from a very early age. He was an extremely inspiring “people person,” who taught me the importance of open and honest communication. My father made it a point to provide frequent positive feedback and encouragement to those around him, both at work and at home. It always amazed me how much more productive and focused I felt after speaking with him. My father taught me never to be afraid of a challenge and to strive for excellence in all things. This philosophy has permeated my career and my life in general, and I will always be grateful for my father’s guidance. Becky Gamble Denise Fulton International Medical News Group My mother showed me that I could be a strong, professional woman and a loving, supportive mother at the same time. Back in the 1970s, she worked outside the home when most mothers did not. Yet, she was always there for me and instilled in me the values I apply professionally every day. While I was growing up, I studied ballet with a wonderful teacher who always said, “If you don’t progress, you regress.” Stephanie Sorine Tia Debon Dowden Health Media My father has been a wonderful mentor to me. Starting with only a high-school degree, he worked his way up through the ranks of a prestigious engineering firm and eventually founded his own business. Through hard work and dedication, his startup grew into a successful and well-respected company. I’ve learned a lot from him over the years, and I still turn to him for business advice. Becky Gamble Solvay Pharmaceuticals My father was a role model for me in so many ways, and he particularly influenced my ability to provide leadership. He always believed in me and encouraged me to speak my mind and be confident in my abilities. He taught me never to be afraid of a challenge and to strive for excellence in all things. This philosophy has permeated my career and my life in general, and I will always be grateful for my father’s guidance. Kathleen Heupler GlaxoSmithKline There have been too many mentors and role models throughout my career to name them all. I have learned something from everyone with whom I have worked. In a way, all of these people have played a role in helping me decide and shape the kind of professional I want to be. That said, there have certainly been some key influencers. For example, my father taught me about dedication, drive, responsibility, passion, and commitment. My mother taught me about the importance of people and relationships and tuning into the human side of business. My husband has helped me learn to stand up, be heard, and not back down from confrontation. Within GlaxoSmithKline, there are five people who have had a huge impact on helping me get to where I am today. From these individuals, I have learned the importance of being authentic, the benefit of knowing and tapping into my own personal strengths, the responsibility of reaching out and helping others reach their full potential, the need to keep work in perspective, and the importance of giving back to the organization and the community. Rosemary McConnell Dorland Global Health I have had many mentors in my life, beginning with my mother and continuing into the workplace. My mother taught me values that I continue to bring to work and that help me make decisions every day, such as courtesy, respect, and a good work ethic. There have been, and continue to be, many role models who have influenced me over the last two and a half decades at Dorland. The one who played the most important role is Rita Sweeney. She helped me go back to college and encouraged me to become involved with outside groups, such as the AAAA, HMCC, and the HBA. Leadership isn’t solitary; it’s something that is grown and cultivated through supportive networks, and it is my responsibility to pass this knowledge on. Sonnie Kim Columbia Medcom Group I believe the qualities that help me be a better leader are dedication, honesty, humility, and clarity. I learned these qualities from my parents and grandparents, who immigrated to the United States from Korea when I was a child. They demonstrated these virtues every day in their work and with their family. These same values direct me in my life. Wendy Mantel Sudler & Hennessey A number of people have been role models for me and have provided important growth opportunities. My parents and grandparents set early examples of community and professional leadership. Two pivotal high school and college teachers encouraged me to take intellectual and creative risks that led to opportunities with life-changing impact. In the pharma industry, there are people on both the client and agency sides of the business to whom I owe thanks for the support and guidance they have provided and the doors they have opened. Sudler & Hennessey, in particular, has made available many varied opportunities for my growth over the years, continuing to this day. Nicole Mowad-Nassar Abbott Laboratories I have sought out several mentors throughout my career who have guided me and at times given me the feedback needed to succeed. In addition, I have had one significant sponsor who has not only mentored me, but also taken calculated risks on me and not allowed me to fail. This kind of support has given me the freedom to take chances and remain authentic in the workplace. I’ve also had a strong role model in my father, who is a loving parent and a compassionate physician and administrator whose work ethic and integrity have provided me powerful examples to emulate. He instilled in me that women could be anything they wanted and that with the right work ethic and moral compass everything is possible. Jo-Ann Straat Sankyo Pharma I’ve worked with very talented people and strong role models over the years, but the person who has had the greatest influence on my leadership development is my mother. She is a woman of uncommon strength and intelligence and who was raised at a time when women were kept in the background and given few opportunities. She set ambitious goals for herself, was undaunted by obstacles, and adapted quickly to changing circumstances. Her tenacity and determination continue to inspire me. Stephanie Sorine Wishbone-ITP While I was growing up, I studied ballet with a wonderful teacher who always said, “If you don’t progress, you regress.” Madame Danilova will never know how much of a role she played in my development as a leader. Faith Osborn Newtonedge Debra Newton, the president of NewtonEdge, has taught me a tremendous amount about communication and what it takes to succeed in the bio/pharma and education industries. She has always believed in me and helped me to be self-reflective on how I can be the best that I am. Bonnie Sprague FCB Healthcare My mentor was the first supervisor I had in the healthcare industry, Stef Stendardo. She was editorial director at World Health Communications, a Nelson Communications company at the time. Stef was a brilliant writer, a meticulous editor, and a supportive and influential manager. I began as an associate editor, and, through the years, she took me under her wing and helped me develop the skills necessary to further my career. Together, we ultimately developed a new position for me, associate editorial director. In this position, I managed a small group of editors. That’s when I knew that I wanted to continue in a leadership role. Stef made it her priority to mentor me when she saw that I was passionate about healthcare, about writing, and about the company we worked for. She would call me her “rising star,” which makes this honor truly special because that is just how my career began. I would watch her lead productive staff meetings, how she handled a difficult client call with reassuring confidence, and problem solve when faced with challenging employee and workload issues every day. I was amazed at how she was able to meet her own responsibilities, while managing multiple projects and multiple people. I absorbed everything I could, while she taught me what I needed to know. I learned quality leadership skills from her, and I am thankful that she devoted her time to helping me grow. That was about 10 years ago, and she is still the most instrumental person in my career. We keep in touch to this day. I feel fortunate to have had such a positive and promising start in this field. Since that time, FCB Healthcare has offered me important career opportunities, where I can apply this experience and gain new experiences as well. Diane Baisch Saatchi & Saatchi Healthcare Advertising I will forever be grateful to Lester Barnett, a cofounder of VICOM, for all that I learned from him. The two most important things I learned were to believe in myself and that leadership is not something that anyone can give you. Leadership is obtained by having a vision of how things could be better and then having the courage to step forward to push for that vision. Lisa Stockman Chandler Chicco The principals in my firm, Robert Chandler and Gianfranco Chicco, have been amazing mentors. I worked with them for several years at Burson-Marsteller and then started Chandler Chicco Agency with them a decade ago. I learn something new from them every day and am continually inspired by their vision. Sara Barnett Unlimited Performance Training My current boss, Kimberly A. Farrell, who is the CEO and founder of Unlimited Performance Training, has been my role model and mentor. Since the day I met her four years ago, Kimberly recognized my talents and potential. She has always respected my gifts in computer science and creative marketing, and she challenged me to take on greater leadership roles. It was her belief in me and my desire to grow as a person that has helped me achieve many new career and professional accomplishments. Judith Britton Regan Campbell Ward I’ve had the great fortune of having several wonderful people coach me throughout the 20-plus years of my career. Larry Cummins, who encouraged my move from publishing to advertising, gently pushed me toward better roles and responsibilities. Maureen Regan has been a wonderful example of how to lead, in terms of servicing business, managing and owning a brand, and, I think most importantly, managing people inside as well as outside the agency. On a personal note, I’ve also been lucky to have Lorraine Pastore available throughout my career as a boss, advocate, career coach, and cheerleader. Cindy Russo Schering-Plough Most would consider themselves lucky to have one role model who played an important part in their professional development. I’ve had the fortune to have been surrounded by great people who have helped me grow, and I continue to learn from many of them. Paramount, however, are three people. The first, is my current boss, Bruce Reid, who is the senior VP of global business operations at Schering-Plough. Bruce has taught me through example in so many ways — the most profound of which is through his inherent and endless supply of passion for everything he does. No matter the size or magnitude of the initiative, or his leadership role, Bruce “walks the talk” when it comes to passion, customer focus, and continuous improvement. He not only gives his best to any task, but when he or his team has completed it, you can rest assured he’ll be thinking about what he could have done better. Working closely with Bruce, of course, keeps me on my toes. Through his leadership, I’ve sharpened my focus on continuously challenging myself to learn, to improve, to make the most of every opportunity, and to create opportunity whenever possible. Another key role model for me is Jeff Winton, my former boss at Pharmacia and current group VP of global communications at Schering-Plough. Jeff has taught me many things, not least of which is to celebrate the people I work with — as often as possible. He has a tremendous ability to balance his business and people priorities. And anyone who has worked with Jeff comes to learn that he is the epitome of a global communications expert, who, not coincidentally, is also a true “people person.” Jeff’s commitment to doing his best for his people in terms of career guidance, development, growth, and recognition, not only creates a fantastic work environment, it’s also good for business because a cohesive, motivated team is best suited to surpass objectives. Jeff’s support and recognition, both personally and professionally, have always meant a great deal to me, and his management style, or perhaps it’s simply his personality, inspires me to be an even stronger advocate for my colleagues. And last, but most certainly not least, is Carrie Cox, executive VP and president of global pharmaceuticals at Schering-Plough. A savvy, decisive global business executive, Carrie is not only a role model — to me and so many others — she’s an icon in the healthcare industry. I remain committed to learning as much as I can from her. Lynn Shepherd Vox Medica My focus on healthcare communications started when I began working with Eve Dryer, president of Vox Medica Healthcare Public Relations, very early in my career. Eve’s mentorship and friendship has played an important part in my career decisions and my development as a communications professional. Her passion, creativity, and simple human kindness are attributes I admire and aspire to in my professional and personal life. Nancy Barbour Bristol-Myers Squibb There are a number of people who have served as mentors and role models for me, some in a formal way and others informally. One person in particular has been a key mentor for me for a number of years. What began as occasional conversations or requests for advice evolved into a formal mentoring relationship with an incredible level of candor that comes from the mutual trust developed over time. Linda Palczuk AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals There were two mentors who had the most impact on my leadership development. Both were men, and each played a distinct role in molding my leadership capabilities. The first mentor taught me the value of diversity and recognizing and acknowledging different leadership styles. As a minority who enjoyed a career of achievement, this man demonstrated every day that difference is not only a good thing for an organization, but also a necessity for sustained success. His sense of humor and articulate nature led to many powerful coaching sessions; he taught me that compassion is a key component to leadership. The second mentor had a more recent impact on my leadership development. He approached our joint growth and development as a partnership and challenged me to look deeper into myself to understand my potential as a leader and a person. By actively participating in our leadership together, this man demonstrated to me that leadership is an ongoing endeavor, needing continuous attention and effort. Cathi Ahearn Genentech I have been fortunate to have a number of significant mentors in both my career development and in my development as a leader. They were exceptional people who took the time to help me learn, grow, and develop. They have taught me to lead by example, to achieve exceptional results by challenging conventional thinking, and that investing in people pays the greatest long-term dividends. Wanda Hope Ortho Biotech Products I’ve been privileged to have many mentors throughout my career, and most of them have been instrumental in my personal development and career progression. My mentors come from a variety of functional areas, industries, and backgrounds. The diversity among my mentors has helped me to understand and approach business situations and my career from a broad perspective. There is one mentor who has really helped me to successfully manage my career. This mentoring relationship works well because it is based on mutual trust and respect, open communication, and a willingness to challenge each other. How important was it to have leadership opportunities given to you? Conversely, did you actively seek out new roles and assignments? Diane Baisch Saatchi & Saatchi Healthcare Advertising As I first learned from Lester Barnett at VICOM and then had reinforced by Sam Welch at Klemtner, leadership is not something that is given to you. Organizations can give you a title, but that doesn’t make you a leader. It is your actions that determine if you are a leader. Leadership is about seeing what needs to be done and then stepping forward to help make it happen. Christine D’Appolonia LLNS I was a hard worker and found myself in a leadership position relatively early in my career. I was strongly supported and provided with coaching and other tools to enhance my leadership skills. Lauren Gaffney Opportunities are rarely given to you. I’ve sought them out and earned them with hard work, and I have been able to demonstrate my abilities by tackling and succeeding in difficult tasks. In this way, I have earned the trust of colleagues and clients. I believe that people who seek new and different opportunities and experiences inherently exhibit leadership characteristics. The goal is not necessarily to lead, but by taking on challenging assignments and producing successful experiences, one becomes a leader. Seeking new assignments was critical to my career development in that this enabled me to apply different talents, acquired through exposure to a variety of opportunities, and to ultimately guide others by passing along what I learned. Nancy Drescher Judith Britton Regan Campbell Ward While it may be true that “good things come to those who wait,” I have always found it more satisfying to act on unmet needs and create new roles and responsibilities for myself. Identifying these opportunities allows you to step in and create your ideal situation, the right area of interest, and the right team. Nancy Drescher Cline Davis & Mann A true leader is one who actively seeks opportunity rather than waiting for new roles or assignments to come along. Throughout my career, I have consistently tried to round out my skill set by searching for opportunities that would provide me with exposure to something new, whether that new experience was leading a launch, learning a new therapeutic category, running a global business, managing a blockbuster product, handling multiple clients and assignments, or developing my supervision skills by managing larger teams. Seeking new assignments was critical to my career development in that it enabled me to apply different talents, acquired through exposure to a variety of opportunities, and to ultimately guide others by passing along what I learned. In many cases, this required moving from one company to another. But I found that by striking out into unfamiliar territory I grew as an individual and as a leader, as my exposure to different corporate cultures and philosophical approaches to business increased. I am fortunate to have settled in a company where I have sought, but have also been offered, new roles to keep me challenged and growing as a leader. I firmly believe that it is through self-motivation and a desire to keep learning, improving, and teaching that one becomes a well-rounded, successful, and respected leader. Kathleen Gaffney Elsevier I believe true leaders take risks and always seek new opportunities. Taking on new assignments, volunteering for new projects, and becoming a liaison with colleagues from other divisions are all simple ways to establish leadership qualities. Leaders “earn” new opportunities. Becky Gamble Solvay Pharmaceuticals Throughout my career, I have always sought out more opportunities for personal growth and advancement. I began my career as a field pharmaceutical representative. But I quickly took on a variety of other roles, including field trainer, district manager, and national account manager to broaden my base of knowledge and experience. This has served me well in my career thus far and remains a cornerstone of my personal philosophy on career development. I believe that the willingness to step out of a comfort zone, learn, and apply those daily lessons are what have provided the most leadership experiences. For better or worse, you don’t win if you don’t play. Wendy Mantel Sudler & Hennessey I have been given some great leadership opportunities inside and outside the office, but they would not have been available had I not shown interest and capability to take them on. My advice is: Don’t wait for the opportunity to come to you; watch for the need and let your managers know that you are eager to take a lead role. Who can resist someone with a passion for the business? Cira Montreys, Ph.D. international meetings & Science For as long as I can remember, I’ve had the sense that I had both the ability and the responsibility to assume various positions of leadership. In these situations, I’ve actively sought the opportunity to make the contributions that I knew I could and believed that I should make. Of course, each experience has been a learning opportunity, and I’ve consciously tried to apply previous learnings to new settings. Throughout my career, I’ve consistently moved to positions of increasing responsibility, believing that I could improve outcomes for both clients and coworkers. If I can make a contribution, it’s almost a mission that I do so. Fortunately, I’ve also had a healthy appreciation for the things I’m not good at, and I think I know when it’s my turn to follow. Lisa Morris IMS Health Early in my career I realized that opportunities are taken, not given. This holds true in the case of career progression, as well as in decision making, and this is fundamental to how I’ve managed my career over the past decade. It’s easy to wait for others to come to you with ideas or opportunities; the real challenge is to identify what you want and go after it, basically forging your own path. Many of my successes were built, in large part, on being able to articulate what I wanted to do, identify challenges and critical success factors, and then just go for it. Lisa Pilla Novartis Pharmaceuticals Throughout my career I have sought out new assignments and roles to gain leadership experience. Since starting in the industry as a sales representative, each promotion or developmental assignment I participated, was a result of me seeking it out. This includes promotions to sales training, management, developing training for a large downsizing, and various marketing roles. I believe that a person must take charge of his or her own career and development. Career goals are very personal, so one must communicate interest and go after or create opportunities to ensure these goals are being met. Nicole Mowad-Nassar Abbott Laboratories I have benefited from a mix of opportunities that I’ve reached for, as well as those from others who have taken chances on me. I think the best experiences I’ve had have been the difficult assignments on smaller, complex brands that others might not have been attracted to but that provided me with the opportunity to grow. I believe that my willingness to take on these challenges without hesitation is a large part of my current success. But at the end of the day, each individual is responsible for guiding his or her own career. Gail Turner Guidant I have always sought new opportunities of increasing importance and challenge. In six years, I have had a sales role, two manager positions, and was made director of sales two years ago. Guidant rewards performance and encourages creativity and flexibility in the workplace. Linda Palczuk AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals There have been times in my career when I sought opportunities actively and other times when I was encouraged to pursue roles for professional growth and development. The important thing is to approach each opportunity with an eye toward exceeding the goals of the job, as well as looking for growth scenarios within the job. I also strongly believe that one has to be mentally and emotionally ready to take on a new role. I was approached years back about a wonderful opportunity in another part of the business. Although I was flattered to be considered, there were still a few goals that I had set for myself in my current role that I had yet to achieve. I could not move forward without achieving those milestones. The next opportunity did not surface for a few years, but, when it did, I knew it was the right time for me to move on, and I was much better prepared for the challenges of the new role. Tristen Herrstrom Ventiv Health I think opportunity goes hand-in-hand with actively going beyond one’s current job responsibilities. I never specifically sought out new assignments to give me more experience but always went above and beyond my job scope to offer solutions for better business practices across the company. This allowed me opportunities to grow as a leader. Kathleen Heupler GlaxoSmithKline Seeking opportunity and taking the initiative has been, perhaps, the most important step I have consciously taken in navigating my career. In the early days, I tended to wait for opportunities to be handed to me. I fell into the not-so-uncommon trap of believing that my good work and dedication would speak to my willingness to take on more. Somewhere along the way, I realized that doing good work was not enough because there are a lot of people who do really good work. I realized that if I wanted to be recognized, I was going to need to be more proactive. I started to ask for opportunities and volunteered for assignments and special projects. I did not just focus on high-visibility projects either. The majority of initiatives that I sought were not highly visible to the organization at large, but were plenty visible to my peers and my management. Also, if I see a problem that needs to be fixed, I no longer wait for someone else to fix it. I proactively create proposals for solutions and follow through on rolling them out. Natasha Alam Medsite For me, it has been a combination of opportunities given and sought. I enjoy working toward my goals, as well as the opportunity to help others who come to me for advice or guidance regarding their own challenges. This has been particularly true in my role with the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. As a cancer survivor, it gives me immense satisfaction to share my experience or to serve as a mentor to others whose lives have been touched by the disease. Carolyn Libretti Ernst & Young Leadership is a developmental process. To be a good leader, I knew that I need to have breadth and depth of experience, so I keep an “inventory” of opportunities I have been offered and challenges I seek out on my own. Good leaders attract good opportunities, while at the same time challenging themselves to continue to develop broader and deeper leadership abilities. Angela Lukin Wyeth Pharmaceuticals Early on in my career, it was about others believing in me perhaps more than I believed in myself. There were instances where I was asked to take over projects and handle challenging situations. At that time, I did not necessarily view them as opportunities for leadership. These were experiences that pushed my limits further than I thought I could go. I realize now how valuable those experiences have been. There have been other times where I believed I was ready for a new challenge and proactively sought to push my limits. Bonnie Sprague FCB Healthcare I think it is essential for each and every employee to have the opportunity to shine, and that is the responsibility of the company. But, more importantly, what will employees do with the opportunities given to them? That’s what makes a leader stand out. I believe that there needs to be a balance of having opportunities available and seeking out opportunities. While I was fortunate to have supportive supervisors who were committed to my growth, I was also committed to my growth. If I had a moment to spare, I was in my supervisor’s office asking for more responsibility and about new projects and new business opportunities for the agency. I would ask about assignments outside my work load to make sure that I knew what was going on throughout the agency at all times. This way, I could jump on a hot new opportunity to get exposure to senior management, become more involved with high-profile accounts/assignments, and make a lasting impression. I think it’s the responsibility of both the supervisor and the employee to see to it that the employee develops good leadership skills to advance his or her career. Lyn Falconio Grey Healthcare Group I’m fortunate to have had the opportunity to work on a diverse range of products. Each experience brought a unique market challenge or opportunity that had to be leveraged to make the most of the product’s potential. It’s not just about working on the blockbusters. Seeking opportunities that will give richness in experience, big or small, helps shape your ability to manage all of the complexities of our markets and the ability to provide well-rounded service to your clients. Cathi Ahearn Genentech There is learning to be had from every new assignment, and seeking new opportunities has always been a priority for me. Equally important in getting those opportunities was having managers and leaders in the organization who were willing to take a chance on someone who may not have the right “experience,” but who had the potential to grow into the role. Their willingness to provide “stretch” assignments has allowed me to develop new skills and expertise and to build upon my experience as a leader. nancy Barbour Bristol-Myers Squibb Early in my career my supervisor happily shared the news that I had been selected to lead my first project team. I accepted the role gladly while inwardly feeling panic that I wasn’t yet ready for the level of responsibility. I discovered from that experience that the best development opportunities are often those for which you don’t think you’re prepared. Since then, I’ve actively sought new roles and assignments and also remained open to those offered to me. My perspective has broadened as I’ve worked in new areas, and I have found that each door that is opened reveals a new set of previously unknown doors behind which lie limitless opportunities. Lauren Gaffney Dimensional Healthcare I joined Dimensional HealthCare shortly after the company was founded and I had little industry experience. As a novice account executive at a small and growing company, I reported directly to the president, which helped move me up the learning curve quickly. I don’t believe that I sought new assignments to gain leadership experience, but I was a hard worker and found myself in a leadership position relatively early in my career. Initially, leading people proved challenging for me. Fortunately, I was strongly supported and provided with coaching and other tools to enhance my leadership skills. I love the opportunity to observe other leaders’ styles and continuously work on improving my ability to effectively lead others. Catherine Geddes Roche Soon after graduation, I decided to pursue a career in the pharmaceutical industry because of an interest in healthcare. To meet my career goals, perform at the highest levels, and position myself for advancement, I believed it was important to develop a broad range of experiences and skills. I realized this methodical approach would take time, but I believed my career needed to be built on a strong foundation. My first position was in the marketing department at a start-up biotech company where I was exposed to many facets of the business. Later, I decided it was time to move to a larger pharmaceutical company and was fortunate enough to be recruited by Roche. In more than 14 years in the industry, I’ve been able to develop fundamental skills in many areas of marketing and sales, which have served me well in my various positions and which enable me to be an effective regional sales director at Roche. Kharen Jones Communications Media It is extremely important to continue my education in communications, as this is an ever-changing medium. Were it not for my supervisors, Julie Mezrow and Fred Foard, and their continued confidence in my ability to perform my responsibilities accurately and in a timely fashion, I would not be receiving the recognition that I am today. I am consistently looking for new and improved methods of delivering quality service to our clients. Tiffany Ryan Palio Communcations I was fortunate to join Palio during its early stages of growth. This provided me with challenges and opportunities that far exceeded my expectations. I actively sought out some of these opportunities, while others were provided to me through my day-to-day role. The experience I developed through these opportunities provided me with a strong foundation of problem solving skills, an understanding of client relations, the ability to manage client and internal expectations, and knowledge about the intricate details involved in project execution. I strive to provide my employees with the same opportunities to allow them to develop their own sense of leadership skills. Judy Seraphine Promedica Communications Fortunately, I was in a position where I was able to both seek out new roles along with being assigned new and more difficult tasks. I believe that it’s extremely important in the healthcare industry to be well-rounded and willing and able to do various tasks. PharmaVOICE welcomes comments about this article. E-mail us at I always went above and beyond my job scope to offer solutions to provide better business practices across the company. Tristen Herrstrom The 2005 HBA Rising Stars Cathi Ahearn Group Product Manager, Avastin Marketing Genentech Inc. Cathi is a results-oriented manager who is strategic, yet practical in her approach. Meg Ainley Publisher Advanstar Medical Economics Meg is thoroughly committed to publishing excellence and has proven to be a true inspiration to her team as well as the clients she serves. Natasha Alam Director, Client Services Medsite Natasha’s spirit and character exemplify leadership and inspiration. Diane Baisch Senior VP, Group Account Director Saatchi & Saatchi Healthcare Advertising Diane’s leadership and tireless work ethic have enabled her to grow into her current position. Nancy Barbour Associate Director, Biopharmaceutics Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. Nancy is a leader who has consistently demonstrated strengths in team building, strategic thinking, and driving performance. Eina D. Barnes VP Bench International Eina is tireless in her commitment to bringing women and women of color into the pharmaceutical and biotechnology sector. Sara Barnett Director, Marketing Communications Unlimited Performance Training Inc. Sara is a great role model for women who aspire to combine computer science with creative design. Judith Britton Senior VP, Account Group Manager Regan Campbell Ward Judith is extremely intelligent, dedicated, flexible, and a source of strength and confidence to everyone who works with her. Denise A. Cooke District Sales Manager Organon Pharmaceuticals USA Inc. Denise’s dedication to coaching her team and her passion for achieving success are what distinguish her. Rebecca Cotton Senior Director, Market Research ImpactRx Rebecca has quickly earned a position on our operating committee and has assumed responsibility for several major new product development initiatives. Christine D’Appolonia Senior VP/Account Group Supervisor LLNS Christine is always the perfectionist, and she has the ability to keep everyone happy. Tia DeBon VP and Publisher, Custom Programs Dowden Health Media Tia brings good humor, forthrightness, flexibility, and dedication to her professional relationships. Nancy Drescher Executive VP, Group Managing Director Cline Davis & Mann Nancy’s style is best described as “passion-zeal” accented by a “nurture-or-die” attitude. Lyn Falconio Executive VP, General Manager Grey Healthcare Group Inc. Lyn is a results-driven executive as well as a natural leader and strategist. Lucille Fitzsimmons Solution Partner BusinessEdge Solutions Inc. Lucille is an original and incisive thinker, and her professionalism and demeanor help her to act as a role model. Denise Fulton Editor, Family Practice News International Medical News Group/ Elsevier Denise’s energy, leadership, and decisiveness make her an invaluable member of our editorial management team. Kathleen Gaffney Executive Publisher Elsevier Kathleen manages with enthusiasm, dedication, a sense of humor, and a superior work ethic. Lauren Gaffney Senior VP, Client Services Dimensional HealthCare Lauren is bright, focused, and determined to do it the right way. Becky Gamble Senior Marketing Manager Solvay Pharmaceuticals Inc. Becky is recognized for her industry and customer knowledge, her leadership, and her teamwork. Catherine A. Geddes Regional Sales Director, HCV Roche Cathy’s business acumen, enthusiastic nature, and strong desire to succeed are apparent in everything she undertakes. Tristen Herrstrom Senior VP, Resource Management Ventiv Health Tristen has consistently exhibited hard work, commitment, and a thoughtful approach to people and business. Kathleen Heupler Director, Commercial Analysis, Oncology and Vaccines GlaxoSmithKline Kathy has established high standards for partnership and results for the business units she supports, and she is an active mentor and development planning coach. Wanda Hope VP, Chronic Care Franchise Ortho Biotech Products LP Wanda is a charismatic leader who has a talent for developing people, delivering solutions for customers, and providing new perspectives regarding what’s possible in meeting business challenges. Kharen Jones Supervisor, Media Strategies Communications Media Inc. (CMI) Kharen has an infectious spirit and an exceptionally strong work ethic and dedication to her coworkers and clients. Sonnie Kim VP, Medical Affairs Columbia MedCom Group Sonnie quietly anticipates, analyzes, and operationalizes strategic science-based solutions, while mentoring her colleagues to deliver exceptional medical communication services. Carolyn Libretti Leader Ernst & Young Carolyn furthers the development of younger women and serves in a leadership role in our Professional Women’s Network. Angela Lukin Senior Director, Global Strategy Wyeth Pharmaceuticals Angela has established a reputation for grasping complex business issues, while addressing the challenges that each issue poses. Wendy Mantel Senior VP, Management Supervisor Sudler & Hennessey Wendy is smart, hardworking, and very effective with clients, and she has a wonderfully broad, open approach to marketing that helps her to maximize opportunities and solutions. Rosemary McConnell Media Director Dorland Global Health Rosemary is a longtime, trusted employee, who keeps adding responsibilities to her roles and is the keeper of the corporate vision for healthy living. Tamra Micco Account Group Supervisor PACE Inc., a Lowe Healthcare Company Tamra’s leadership skills and can-do attitude are second to none. She is hard working, has great judgment, is dedicated, and clients and colleagues love working with her. Cira Montreys, Ph.D. Senior VP, Director of Scientific Services International Meetings & Science (IMsci) Cira possesses an unusual blend of rigorous scientific expertise, creative flair, and strategic insight. Lisa Morris Global Director, IMS Longitudinal Services IMS Health Lisa delivers stellar performance year after year and is recognized by both her clients and colleagues as an expert in the analysis and application of longitudinal patient data. Nicole Mowad-Nassar Divisional VP, Diabetes/Metabolism and Hypertension Abbott Laboratories Nicole is an outstanding leader, and her style of innovative and unpretentious leadership has sparked Abbott employees to contribute above and beyond their normal duties. Faith Osborn Creative Director NewtonEdge Faith’s creative talents combined with her enthusiasm and excitement for her work motivate those around her to continue to push the envelope and reach for the stars. Linda Palczuk Executive Director, Commercial Operations AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals LP Linda continually finds time to be both coach and mentor to individuals throughout AstraZeneca, and she consistently demonstrates her ability to balance work with life, serving as a role model for others. Lisa Pilla Regional Director, Ciba/Novartis Sales, Morristown Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corp. Lisa demonstrates a strong sense of business acumen and brings a high-energy level to building an inclusive and best-in-class culture. Cindy Russo Senior Director, Strategic Communications, Global Pharmaceutical Business Schering-Plough Corp. Cindy is a proactive, highly productive, confident team player who is energetic, direct, and results oriented. Tiffany Ryan Account Director Palio Communications Tiffany has been promoted five times since coming to the agency in 2000; she oversees one of our most successful client relationships. Judy Seraphine Senior Account Director PROmedica Communications Inc. Judy personifies the very important leadership qualifications of patience, perseverance, and striving for excellence. Lynn Shepherd VP, Media Strategy Vox Medica Inc. Lynn’s passion for healthcare, combined with her strategic thinking and her no-problem attitude, makes her a valued colleague to clients and coworkers alike. Stephanie Sorine Senior VP, Creative Director — Copy Wishbone-ITP Inc. Stephanie’s DTC and Rx experience coupled with her strong work ethic uniquely suit her for this challenging position. Bonnie Sprague Copy Supervisor FCB Healthcare Bonnie is an exceptionally talented writer with great strategic insights who is equally adept at reaching out to consumers or working with scientific data. Lisa Stockman Team Leader Chandler Chicco Agency Lisa is smart, indefatigable, compassionate, and reliable; no one is more knowledgeable about healthcare. Jo-ann Straat Senior Manager, Corporate Affairs Sankyo Pharma Inc. Jo-ann is a pioneer who sets high- performance expectations for herself as well as for the team she motivates and leads. Gail Turner Director of Sales, Northeast Atlantic Region Guidant Corp. Gail was the recipient of Guidant’s manager of the year award in 2001 for her outstanding performance. Nanske Wood President Carbon Nanske has consistently demonstrated outstanding leadership qualities throughout her career; she is intelligent, motivating, innovative, and driven. The 2005 HBA Rising Stars (unavailable for comment for this article) Jane Byun VP, Account Services MedLearning Inc. Jane possesses a perfect combination of scientific acumen, logistical expertise, and management savvy. Vanessa Hayden Director, Publishing Operations Division American Medical Association Vanessa is bright, innovative, passionate about her work, and always willing to go the extra mile to get the job done. Lucy Hutchison Associate Director of Rasagiline Marketing Eisai Inc. Lucy has made significant contributions to the Parkinson’s disease area, including the launch of, a top-ranked site visited for information. Donna Matthews Director, E-Savings Solutions Compas Inc. Donna’s dedication and commitment to building and growing the promotional business is immeasurable. Debbie McCollough Associate VP, Customer Development sanofi-aventis Debbie has grown in her roles and responsibilities and truly represents a leader within sanofi-aventis. Audrey Pezzuti VP, Systems Technology Innovative Medical Education Audrey is a true problem solver and an innovative thinker; she has created an environment that is supportive of the entire organization as well as that of the clients. My goal is to develop the premier, world-class sales organization that is recognized industrywide for its exceptional performance, expertise, and customer focus. Catherine Geddes

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