Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - 32

LEADERSHIP/MANAGEMENTDEVELOPMENT

Tactical or Strategic?
I By Rich Horwath

G

The need for
these managers
to move from
tactical
to strategic has
accelerated.
So what’s standing
in the way?

one are the days when district sales
managers could hit their numbers by
uniformly allocating two hundred
samples, five dinner programs and three lunchand-learns per territory. Gone are the days when
marketing managers sit walled-off from their
medical and sales counterparts and concoct
strategies and sell sheets without the input of
these key personnel. Gone are these days ... or
are they?
With dynamic changes in the healthcare
arena – including reduced access to customers,
Accountable Care Organizations and new
government regulations – the ability of sales and
marketing managers to continually assess their
business, set strategic direction and focus
resources has never been more critical. The need
for these managers to move from tactical to
strategic has accelerated. So what’s standing in
the way?
Based on strategy training workshops with
thousands of pharma and biotech managers
during the past decade, two immediate barriers
have been identified that prevent the move from
tactical to strategic thinking:
Time and knowledge.

Time
The most often-cited strategy challenge that
sales and marketing managers provide is a lack
of time. They live in an action-dominated world.
Time to step back and actually think about the
business is a luxury most believe they can’t
afford, and their bosses wouldn’t support. After
all, there is no box on their performance review
that says, “Invested one hour a week thinking
strategically – Exceeds Expectations.”
However, investing time thinking about their
business is something great leaders have the
discipline to do. LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner
shares his perspective: “Thinking, if done
properly, requires uninterrupted focus;
thoroughly developing and questioning
assumptions; synthesizing all of the data,
information and knowledge that’s incessantly
coming your way; connecting dots, bouncing
ideas off of trusted colleagues. In other words, it
takes time. And that time will only be available if
you carve it out.”
Barrier Buster #1: Provide sales and
marketing managers with the permission and
tools to think strategically for one hour per
week.

Knowledge.
During the next week, have 10 sales and
marketing managers you interact with write
down their definitions of the following terms:
goal, objective, strategy and tactic. While you
might not get 10 different
definitions of these terms, you
most certainly won’t get one
consistent definition of each.
Why? Because strategy is an
abstract concept, like
leadership or love. You
can’t reach out and touch
a strategy. Managers are

32

FOCUS | SUMMER 2013 | www.spbt.org


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Focus Magazine - Summer 2013

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Focus Magazine - Summer 2013

Focus Magazine - Summer 2013
From the President: Why Does Innovation Matter to Training?
Contents
Guest Editor: The Importance of Training Analytics
Front of the Room: Focus on Intention
Conference Recap
Merck's Global Learning Transformation
Building a World-Class Training Organization
Neuroscience and Learning: Lighting up the Brain
iPad Training: The NFL Playbook
3D Models for Marketing Medical Devices
Tactical or Strategic?
Is Your Elevator Pitch Ready?
Virtual How
Member News
World-Class Training Pull Through
Ad Index
Focus Contacts
5 Questions: 5 Questions with ... Dan Pink
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - Intro
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - Focus Magazine - Summer 2013
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - Cover2
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - 3
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - 4
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - From the President: Why Does Innovation Matter to Training?
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - 6
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - Contents
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - 8
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - 9
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - 10
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - Guest Editor: The Importance of Training Analytics
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - 12
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - Front of the Room: Focus on Intention
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - Conference Recap
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - 15
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - 16
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - Merck's Global Learning Transformation
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - 18
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - 19
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - Building a World-Class Training Organization
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - 21
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - 22
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - 23
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - Neuroscience and Learning: Lighting up the Brain
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - 25
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - 26
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - 27
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - iPad Training: The NFL Playbook
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - 29
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - 3D Models for Marketing Medical Devices
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - 31
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - Tactical or Strategic?
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - 33
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - 34
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - 35
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - Is Your Elevator Pitch Ready?
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - 37
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - Virtual How
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - 39
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - 40
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - Member News
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - World-Class Training Pull Through
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - 43
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - Ad Index
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - Focus Contacts
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - 5 Questions: 5 Questions with ... Dan Pink
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - Cover3
Focus Magazine - Summer 2013 - Cover4
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