Will the pharma organization learn?

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QUICK READ: Maybe pharma companies will learn that they can get more things done without the need for constant meetings as a result of working at home. It’s also a good time to ditch open offices as employees really hate them.

Almost all pharma companies are matrix organizations which is a business term that translates into back-to-back meetings and slow decision making. It’s not uncommon for managers to have their calendars completely full for weeks at a time. This has slowed decision making to a crawl which means missed opportunities.

Now that the majority of employees are working at home it’s a great time to determine who really needs to be involved in brand decisions like converting a site to a responsive website.

If, on the other hand, you’re stuck waiting to get a certain number of people on a Zoom conference call you’re not evolving; you’re just substituting one outdated process for another.

You should be aware that more people are going to want to be involved in any decisions you make whether it involves them or not. People are living in fear for their jobs so they want to seem like they’re more involved to try and safeguard their positions. This is going to add to the burden of getting things done in a timely manner.

Then there are the open offices. For some reason, executives were conned into the belief that open offices would encourage collaboration when research shows they do the exact opposite. Your employees hate open offices and right now you should be working to eliminate open offices to provide better working conditions and protect their health.

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One of the biggest consulting companies said along time ago “the biggest challenge for pharma is their own organization”. That remains a huge challenge. Instead of focusing on what the pandemic has done to your business use this time to get better and more responsive. Review all processes and eliminate steps that don’t add value. Don’t be afraid to only add people on a meeting list who have a direct part in implementing the business objective.

To be honest the matrix organization has probably destroyed a lot of good ideas and hurt morale. Right now ask “how can we get better and faster to respond to patients’ needs?”.