Let your sales rep provide solutions

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Q. What does my manufacturer’s sales representative have to offer me?

A. For starters, knowledge. A good representative should have good product knowledge and/or the ability to find the answer promptly. They should have good industry knowledge or access to resources so they can share necessary information with the provider.


Multiple manufacturer representatives can provide solutions from multiple sources. If the manufacturer represented does not offer a viable solution, a good rep will point you in the direction of one that does.

One-on-one service

A good representative will try to understand your business, your goals and assist you in achieving those goals in the utmost confidence. It is a golden rule that a provider’s business plan is never shared.

Support and education

Most providers have no idea of the level of support and education that the representative and its manufacturers can provide. This is not only for their staff but also for their referral sources. By working with the provider, or on behalf of the manufacturer, sales representatives provide hundreds of medical professionals, NRRTS members, CRTSs, ATPs and ATSs with credited programs each year.

Marketing plans

A good representative should work with key providers to set next year’s goals well in advance. Both parties should sit down, review goals and build a plan to achieve these goals in a conscientious fashion.

Mutual respect

Last, but not least, mutual respect. There is nothing worse than a representative making promises that he or his manufacturers do not keep, or those given by a provider that he has no intention of fulfilling.

Our industry is changing rapidly. It is time for dedicated, professional parties on all sides to step up, mature and execute.

Mike Laky is president and CEO of MSL Associates. Reach him at <a href="mailto:mikel@msl-associates.