One way to maximize post-meeting education is to have reps develop personal action plans with scheduled 30-, 60-, and 90-day
coaching programs with managers. Attendees design personal action plans during their training, often by completing pre-made
action-planning worksheets. This will help reps implement the strategies learned at the meeting. For example, a sales representative
should identify three clients that can be affected by a new concept or by information obtained at the meeting, and then design
a specific plan to target those clients over the next 90 days.
This type of planning also serves as a tool for mangers to track and coach reps following the meeting. Managers can follow
along with the coaching program to keep reps accountable to their plans. This approach ensures that the learning curve continues
long after the training has ended.
A fairly typical scenario is for sales reps to attend meetings, listen to the "This is where we have been, this is where we
are, and this is where we are headed" speeches, and shrug them off as just talk.
Companies have an opportunity to extend their message after the sales meeting by using videotaped case studies featuring sales
rep success stories. These mini-documentaries highlight and reinforce training that took place at the event. These programs
feature reps explaining the success they have achieved as a result of the meeting. They also detail how goals were accomplished,
and offer practical tips and suggestions to peers.
A high-quality, professional video production will lend a large degree of credibility to both the program and the individuals.
If these videos are done on a predictable and regular basis, they will create competition among reps, who will want to see
their own achievements and those of their region or district showcased. A well-produced video can build morale and help reinforce
key objectives introduced at the meeting.
Pharma meeting planners should use these tactics to solidify sales rep participation and interest prior to a meeting—and most
important, motivate them long after the event is over.
Josh Barricklow is program designer for Critical Thinking Company. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Richard Bandy is president of Critical Thinking Company. He can be reached at email@example.com