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Patterson's biggest challenges ?

Discussion in 'Patterson Dental Supply' started by Anonymous, Mar 1, 2014 at 3:57 PM.

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  1. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    I’m just wondering what everyone thinks will be the biggest challenges to Patterson’s success over the next 5 to 10 years? Both in terms of growth and maintaining our current business.
     

  2. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    Persuading new reps that their success is a result of their ability and drive and has nothing to do with the Branch Manager.
     
  3. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    convincing reps to stay after they figure out(usually 6 mo) that they made a terrible career choice and will make about as much as a store manager at walmart.
     
  4. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    dental products are a commodity. lower your prices or lose your business. pretty simple.
     
  5. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    In the eight years I’ve been at Patterson I’ve seen many good reps (with lots of potential) go and I’ve seen many bad reps (with low potential, skill, and work ethic) rise. That model worked well for many years because the number one concern for a rep was their ability to connect with the office on a personal level. The “relationship sale” so to speak.

    That is all changing. Patterson’s biggest challenge will be to attract and retain talented sales reps. These are intelligent reps with the drive to not just service their accounts well, but also continually develop their accounts into “super accounts”.

    Selling technology will be key because it will be what allows us to capture and retain merchandise business at decent margins.

    Many of the more successful reps I’ve met seem to be successful simply because of their longevity. Often they seem to be the type of people that wouldn’t stand a chance in other industries. Therefore, they linger around, get an account or two handed to them year after year, ultimately ending up with 2M worth of business. That’s not to say they don’t work hard at keeping their customers happy. They just aren't going to develop too many customers.

    Former service techs, people that are not intelligent, and people that are not driven to develop themselves (in addition to their customers) will not be as successful in the coming years.

    Based on what I’ve seen I don’t feel that Patterson is prepared to make the necessary sacrifices to attract and (more importantly) retain talent.

    Just my two cents.
     
  6. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    I was fired in the best year of my career. My numbers were the highest they had ever been. My manager who was a crook in every sense of the word fired a lot of good reps that year. If a rep is paying their own expenses consolidate the territory so he/she is not driving 2 hours to call on offices. They have no incentive to help you because it is not their dime it is yours. Managers are unethical and it ruins the functioning of the whole team. If one wants to work in a dead end job go ahead. At least you don't have to pay your own expenses at that dead end job.
     
  7. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    Amen.
     
  8. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    That earlier post is dead on.

    So many of the “successful” reps I’ve met at Patterson seem like morons. Many of them do a great job running their route every week, making small talk, and taking orders. However, when it comes to actually helping their clients grow and develop they have a long ways to go. This is because they are deathly afraid to challenge their customers because they don’t have an ounce of respect from their customers. They are “the guy that gets me my supplies” instead of the guy that helps my practice grow.

    Patterson needs to realize that model no longer works. They need to invest in the right people and help those people develop themselves and their territories.

    To the comment about consolidating the territories – you are dead on. I know guys that put on 50,000 miles per year. Think about how much time that is every week driving instead of working directly with customers, developing your own skill sets, or investing in your customers. Also, the “successful” reps are not ever going to drive that extra 45 minutes one-way to try to develop a customer out on the edge of their territory. Why not turn that customer over to someone that’s already in the area?