Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Love Affair

At the risk of sounding like a geek, I must profess my love for Wikipedia. I love following links from one article to the next. I kind of feel like an explorer, discovering new and interesting ideas at every turn. I've stumbled onto some fascinating things (to me anyway), like the anti-microbial properties of silver and argyria, a skin condition caused by ingesting extreme amounts of colloidal silver. (Blech!)

Considering that the articles are written by volunteers, they're informative, well-written and concise. There isn't an article yet on Linvatec, but hmm, maybe I should start one. There are articles on arthroscopy and orthopedics.

The one on orthopedics provides a tidy little overview, breaking down the different specialties within orthopedics and the most common procedures. The type of procedures most frequently performed? Knee arthroscopy and meniscectomy (uh-huh, that's our market). It also includes a brief history of orthopedics, which is remarkable because of the progress made even in just the last 100 years.

Check it out and have fun exploring...

Friday, November 17, 2006

The Ultimate Tag Team

The first six months as a Linvatec rep are challenging, frustrating, insanely busy, and very, very exciting. New reps work during the day and study at night and on the weekends. They must complete 40 modules of training on-line before the come to Largo for formal, in-depth, hands-on training with our marketing managers.

"Give us six months," our director of sales asks new reps. Six months of total immersion. Six months of total commitment. The return on investment? Knowledge, confidence, and eventually, success.

On Labor Day this year, two new reps got their start with us. One represents our arthroscopy and endoscopy lines, the other our powered instruments. Over the next year, they'll share their experiences with us as they cut their teeth in the world of medical device sales.

If you are interested in getting into medical device sales or considering a career with Linvatec, I hope their experience will shed some light on what to expect. If you're one of our other newbies, perhaps you'll gain something from their experiences and share yours too. And, if you're a veteran Linvatec rep, I hope you'll cheer them on. See their comments attached.

Meet the Ultimate Tag Team...


Welcome to my inaugural blog! I’ll do my best to keep this blog fun and interesting—and I hope you’ll join in!

Since about May of 2005, I’ve been working as the recruiter for Linvatec’s distributor sales force. For some bizarre reason I don’t fully comprehend, I find it interesting to dig into the brains of salespeople with forks, knives, chopsticks, pretty much any utencil I can find. I guess you can call me a glutton for punishment.

There aren’t many ground rules for this blog, except the ones we all learned in kindergarten, right? I never read Robert Fulghum’s book, but I imagine it says things like don’t throw mud, don’t be nasty and don’t reveal company secrets. Please also read over the privacy policy carefully if you want your comments to reach a wider audience than just me. Basically...

  • Avoid proper nouns! (a little grammar refresher- that means names of persons, places and things that require capitalization)
  • Avoid numbers! (The older I get, the less I like them anyway)
  • If you are a Linvatec rep or employee, pick a fun but appropriately obscure name for your screen name, choose "other" as your comment option and start writing. (Linvatec reps and employee, please don't use your last name or initials or anyone else's, but send me an e-mail so I at least know who you are.)

A blog like this one is not without precedent. There are a few HR Microsofties who blog on a regular basis. Their blogs are a springboard for discussion and debate. Sometimes they are just a place for flat out silliness. At the same time, they seem to cultivate a sense of community, and help folks who might be interested in working for Microsoft get a glimpse into the company’s culture.

My goals are similar, to learn from you all, to build up a shared sense of what its like to work for Linvatec, and hopefully attract folks who want to join in the greater glory. So if you know of anyone who might find this blog interesting—and really, it will belong to all of us, as you soon shall see— please spread the word.

Microsofties. How do you like that?

What do you think of Linvatechies? Don’t tell—me you love it!

Well, I dunno. I’m not quite sure is has the right ring to it. The true test will be to see if it sticks. If you can come up with something better (and I bet you can) I’d love to hear it.

I read an article recently about Google. “To google” is now a commonly recognized verb, but did you also know the Google folks use it as an adjective? In their interview process, they look for someone who is “googley”. Some one who is “googley” supposedly enjoys solving problems and isn’t too traditional. Lots of nose rings and green hair apparently. (Not that I’m knocking it, I once had one myself—a nose ring that is. To my knowledge I’ve never had a green hair.)

As Google grows, they are concerned about retaining this “googley” feeling. They are trying to figure out how to fortify their company culture so that it doesn’t get diluted because they feel that it’s a huge part of their success.

So, my question to you Linvatec reps and employees is…

What is it to be “Linvatechy”? (Again, it just doesn’t quite work, but stay with me.)

I really think there might be such a thing. Maybe it’s not fully or perfectly formed yet, but it’s out there, I’m pretty sure. I found some interesting things written about Linvatec in a few on-line chats that might hint at it.

From a competitor’s rep (I don’t know who, since the post was anonymous)...
“Linvatec is a great company. Like most med sales companies some products rock and some are a little behind. The crazy thing is their reps are better than my companies reps (not me of course). Strong reps and they seem to have a great work ethic.”

Or how about this reminiscence from a former Linvatec rep?
“Ah Linvatec… great bunch of guys in the field.”

Notwithstanding the fact that we employ both genders, I think there’s something here about what sets us apart. I have my own theories, but I’d rather you help me define it.

What makes you proud? Who do you think we are as a company? What do your customers say about you, and by extension, all of us? Something—a quality, a word, a description, an image, a phrase that sets our reps apart or makes you uniquely identifiable as a Linvatec rep. What does it mean to be “Linvatechy”?

Next up...

A year in the life of a new Linvatec rep.