I agree with everyone's comments. Drug reps often have that polished/cute/handsome look about them. And it IS hard to develop a relationship. I work as an NP in an office and some of the drug reps I like, some I don't. Some are WAY to smarmy for my taste with flattering me or pushing their drugs. I HATE that they bring in food, try to take me out to dinner. I went once on the promise of a drug rep that there would be a lecture, SOME type of education. Turned out to just be an excuse to "get to know me better" and for the doctors in the group to buy 200+ dollars/bottle of wine and have someone else pay for it. Last dinner I ever went too. Drug rep sat by me the entire night and kept trying to get me to go to another dinner the next week.
Also, some drugs suck, and woe to the rep who has to push that drug. Bonuses and trips are not coming your way. I think success or not depends mainly on the product. And new reps often get stuck with crummy product. Some companies don't provide cars or gas money, so that can come out of your product. One of my favorite reps worked for a small company who didn't believe in freebies with the exception of samples
. He used his own car, own gas money (which I think is extreme). No pens or post-it notes even. I used to supply him with pen and paper samples from other drugs for his own personal use! Mpst MD's wouldn't even look at him, becasue he didn't have anything to offer. Except he had an AWESOME and CHEAP product. I wrote so many scripts for that drug that it became out of stock in the area and gave him great sales data. He was so thankful, He bought me lunch out of his own pocket. A Little Caesar's 5.00 pepporoni pizza. It was great! It was nice to see the little man come out on top for once (and no, if the product hadn't have been so good, I wouldn't have written the scripts).
Here is a BIG downside to repping:
I've seen drug reps do ANYTHING for business. Actually know a local MD (unfortunately he was my boss at one time, but thankfully I got out FAST) who is so specialized and with such a big practice, he can ruin certain drug reps local sales. And he does. If the drug rep isn't quick with the free dinners, office supplies, meds, Dr. X brings them into the office and politely tells them to get ready for a transfer because the sales are going to start to go down. He also throws them out of his office and refuses to see them again. He truely prescribed drugs on how well he is treated by the reps. And he also threatened them with ruining their sales. Here is a list of what Dr. X has his drug reps do, and if they don't "No more scripts for you!"
1. Rep took his 5 dogs to the groomers every 4 weeks.
2. Washed his cars (?!)
3. Dinner out once a week at very expensive restaurant.
4. Expected more visits by the rep than what was required by drug company.
5. Constant stock of samples, heaven forbid he ran out (but he did pass these on to pts who didn't have good med insurance, so that was nice)
6. Supplied B/P cuffs, table paper, and any other equipment the drug rep had- even when he didn't have a need for that specific med.
I know this isn't how it is for every rep and not every provider is this crazy, but for me it would only take one client like this to make me hate my job.
I always felt so bad to the drug rep that wasn't his favorite, and would usually spend more time talking to them.