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Career Story: General Manager Of Pharmaceutical Contracting Company

General Manager Of Pharmaceutical Contracting Company

Job Title: General Manager Of Pharmaceutical Manufacturing Company

Type of Company: We make drugs for other large and small pharmaceutical companies that either don't want to or can't make the drugs themselves.

Education: BA, Economics, University of Western Ontario (London)

Previous Experience: I was director of sales for a medical device company, and before that I was director of marketing for another, larger medical device company.

Job Tasks: I manage about 10 people who are responsible for different manufacturing plants in 4 different places. They are plant managers, and finance people that do all the budgeting and payroll, etc. I also manage a bunch of sales people who go out and sell our services to other companies.

On a typical day I spend a lot of time on the phone with people who work for me. They have a lot of questions about what is expected of them and what their priorities are for that day week or month. We talk about their sales numbers and whether they are making their quotas or how many pills they made that day or week. We try to decide which products to make that week and which customers we should speak to if there has been a problem or if we messed something up. I usually speak to my boss once or twice a day at most. He always asks how we are doing and whether we will sell enough that month to keep his boss happy. (Everyone has a boss no matter how high in a company he is!). We usually work hard to keep our customers and my boss happy. If we can do that, we are doing okay.

Best and Worst Parts of the Job: The best part of the job is when a customer tells me that my people have done a good job and that they want to give us more business because they have been pleased so far.

The worst part of the job is when I have to fire someone. Sometimes people aren't very good at their jobs for some reason or another and it becomes necessary to let them go. This is very stressful and no matter how much you dislike them it is not any fun.

Job Tips: For any business role it is critical to develop a few things: communication skills, analytical skills like accounting, math, science economics etc. Remember that your job is to deliver something of value to the company for the pay that they give you. Your job is not simply to absorb all the training that is offered then move on to a different company. Usually it takes a company at least a year and sometimes much longer to get new employees fully trained and competent at their jobs before the company starts to make money off of them. If they leave within 2 years, the company usually loses money on them. And that's called "making a mistake."

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