The disease haunting pharma companies

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Meetings and presentations can benefit a company, but it becomes a disadvantage when your corporate culture uses meetings for every minor decision. It’s essential to balance the number of sessions and presentations and employees’ time to focus on their work.

Based on our research, we wanted to change the images on a product website from stock photography to images of real patients. We also had a huge resource of patients’ stories about living as caregivers and patients with depression. That was over five months ago. Six presentations and numerous meetings have yielded zero movement. Unfortunately, I have found this to be a common issue within pharma and some biotech companies.

A culture of meetings and presentations can be a company disadvantage for a number of reasons.

  • Time suck: Meetings can be a significant time suck, especially if they are not well-run or if they are not necessary. Employees who spend too much time in meetings have less time to focus on their work. This can lead to decreased productivity and missed deadlines.
  • Distraction: Meetings can also be a distraction. When employees are constantly being pulled into meetings, staying focused on their tasks can be difficult. This can lead to errors and missed opportunities.
  • Unnecessary bureaucracy: A culture of meetings and presentations can create a sense of unnecessary bureaucracy. When employees go through many hoops to get anything done, it can be demoralizing and lead to decreased morale.
  • Lack of transparency: When meetings are not well-run or essential decisions are made behind closed doors, it can create a lack of transparency. This can lead to distrust and resentment among employees.
  • Decreased innovation: When employees are constantly told what to do, it can stifle innovation. Employees need the freedom to think creatively and to experiment in order to come up with new ideas.

Those reading this with full calendars can relate to this post those who are thinking of joining a big pharma company are saying”oh my God is this really the culture?”.

Here are some tips for creating a culture that minimizes the disadvantages of meetings and presentations:

  • Only hold meetings when necessary. Don’t schedule a meeting unless there is a specific purpose for it.
  • Have a clear agenda for each meeting. This will help to keep the meeting on track and to ensure that everyone is on the same page.
  • Start and end meetings on time. Respect everyone’s time by starting and ending meetings on time.
  • Encourage participation from everyone. Don’t let one or two people dominate the discussion.
  • Follow up on action items. After each meeting, make sure to document the decisions and action items that need to be taken.
  • Be transparent. Share information openly and honestly with employees.
  • Encourage innovation. Give employees the freedom to think creatively and to experiment.

Many would say, “we can’t do this because we’re a highly regulated industry.” That’s an excuse. When I call a client to discuss the results of some research and actionable items, it shouldn’t take more than two weeks because her calendar is full of meetings.

Yesterday I read an article that pharma companies are planning layoffs because of the legislation on negotiated prices. You can bet that this will lead to even more meetings and presentations as employees try to justify their jobs.

Yes, I am free to work in other industries, but I want to see change.