"Every problem is a gift. Without problems, we would not grow."
Anthony robbins

Medical Sales Reps...avoid these 8 resume pitfalls

With the state of the current job market, the look of your resume has taken on vital importance. Many medical sales professionals have never needed to have a clear, concise resume before. Unfortunately, there are several common pitfalls that seem to be tripping up a lot of sales reps (and managers) these days. Do your best to avoid these resume traps, as they can be costly.

1) No specific sales numbers or accomplishments

 The most important things on a sales resume are NUMBERS. All sales positions should contain at least one or two bullet point showcasing sales growth, percent to plan, and/or revenue dollars. Examples…

  • Grew territory from $400,000 to over $1.2 million in last 3 years
  • Finished 2019 at 128% to plan
  • Ranked 4th in the country for sales growth (out of 75 reps)

A sales resume without numbers is like playing a sporting event without keeping score!

2) Using insider jargon that is only meaningful to employees at your current company

Have someone else who doesn’t work for your company read your resume and make sure it makes sense to an outsider. It should be obvious what you sell and who you sell it to. For instance, a statement like “responsible for driving sales of surgical mesh products to general surgeonsIS MORE CLEAR THANproviding healthcare solutions to physicians and patients on gen4 biomatrix ZR1 technology”.

3) Writing bulky paragraphs that aren’t quickly scannable

A recent study by Theladders.com demonstrated that a typical manager only scans a resume for 7.4 seconds before forming a first impression. A busy resume with long paragraphs is simply not getting read. That said, major accomplishments should literally jump off the page.

  • PRESIDENTS CLUB Winner - 2018
  • Grew REVENUE by $300K dollars in 2019

This shows the manager immediately that they are looking at a winner! Use highlighting, bold font, and bullets for easy reading.

4) Overloading the resume with mundane descriptions and menial tasks

Under each job heading, there should be ONE simple statement about job responsibilities and call points. There is no reason to have 5-10 bullet points explaining every aspect of what all sales reps do every day. A statement like “addressed customer needs and built relationships with key clients” isn’t impactful! Your resume should highlight your accomplishment and why you have excelled, NOT BASIC JOB DESCRIPTIONS. Keep the focus on sales numbers, promotions and awards.

5) Keyword “stuffing” or adjective “dumping”

Inserting a block of adjectives at the top of resume might be helpful for tricking applicant tracking systems in other industries, but these word blocks are rarely helpful in medical sales roles. Just because a person states that they are “resourceful”, “organized” and “solution oriented” doesn’t fool any manager into taking that as gospel. In fact, the manager is likely to simple skip past this section all together

6) Excessive details and space allocated to older less relevant jobs

If you have been in medical sales for 15 years but you worked in retail for your first year out of college; do NOT allocate a bunch of space on your resume over-explaining what a retail employee does. A simple notation of the company, the time frame, and your job title is sufficient on older jobs. This eliminates confusion about employment gaps, but keeps the resume focused on relevant experience.

7) Inserting “filler” sections that don’t add to your brand.

“Objective statements” or “Reference available on request” are NOT NEEDED.

“Activities” sections should only be used when they are noteworthy/interesting. Your Tuesday night beer softball league or love of dogs is NOT RESUME WORTHY. Very rare for a manager to say “WOW, this guy likes paddle- boarding, let’s get him in for an interview”. Now, if you have a hobby that highlights your character or your mental makeup, then it can be included (for example, a marathon runner, a college athlete, public speaking acumen, or significant volunteer experience).

“Skills” sections are valuable when they are truly marketable skills that other don’t possess. For instance, being bilingual, capital sales experience, or reimbursement/coding are worth including. Do not waste space on you resume denoting basic knowledge like “Microsoft Word/Excel, email communication, or expense reports”.

8) Resume too long

There is nothing wrong with a simple one or two page resume. Most three page resume should be shortened. Four page resumes are out of the question.

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