DT for Pharmaceutical Sales Force


In November 2015 ago I facilitated a Design Thinking workshop for Sales & Marketing Leaders of Takeda Indonesia. As Head of Commercial Excellence Department at Takeda Indonesia, it’s my duty to ensure that the business strategy from Corporate & Marketing is very well understood and flawlessly executed at Sales Force level. In short, my Department keeps the right balance of Marketing and Sales Department from strategy to execution, through analytics, training and business development.

The workshop was attended by Takeda Indonesia’s commercial leaders including first and second line Sales Manager (FLSM & SLSM) to Sales Director and also  Marketing Managers & Director. More than 70 participants joined the workshop at Novotel Bogor, and it’s a conjunction of our Mid-Year Business Review Meeting.

A week before, my team prepared the key challenges to ignite the creativity and innovation among the participants. It’s always important to understand the key insights of current situation and condition from Sales Department’s point of view. And not to forget to deeply understand wicky issues and problem being faced.

Then we came up with 3 big challenges:

1) How Might We Mastery The Quality of Selling Model of our MR?

Issues are:

  • Based on latest result in our Selling Model scores, there are areas of improvement including: questioning, and handling objection & validation
  • Access to doctors now becoming very limited and more difficult
  • Time given to MR for detailing is very short ~ 1 to 3 minutes


2) How Might We Improve Field Coaching In Action From FLSM to MR?

Issues are:

  • The scores given by FLSM to MRs, have to be reflective /accountable to real situation – not only generously given to hit the KPI target
  • How to make FLSMs follow the Sales Coaching steps ~ and pay atttention to areas of improvement
  • Need SLSM to properly coach FLSM on their regular Coaching session ~ play a role model for coaching


3) How Might We Optimize Our Business Intelligence Tools ( CRM & Sales Analytic) For the Benefits of MRs Performance?

Issues are:

  • CRM system already implemented for more than 3 years, how to monitor it by weekly, by MR and by FLSM
  • Need a lot of improvement in monitoring/ tracking sales figures on regular basis – to keep up with the latest performance


On the D-Day, we set the rules and provide a basic guideline on step-by-step doing design thinking:

  • Break down into 9 groups
  • Each group works on 1 Challenge
  • End Result is an Idea / Solution in Prototype
  • Everyone should participate
  • Every group will present @10 mins

To make it fun and competitive, we set 3 winner categories, and for sure my team and I provided prizes for the group winners;

1. The Most Original Idea

  • How well is the group in demonstrating empathy to user (filling in the user’s shoe) through their idea?
  • How good is the idea in capturing and fulfilling the needs of user (user-centric)?
  • How good is the idea in the originality of daily issues


2. The Most Likely Prototype to be implemented

  • How feasible is the prototype to be implemented?
  • How possible is the prototype to be used by the user?
  • How comply is the prototype to our CoC or regulation?


3. The Most Creative Group

  • How good is their idea to be “out of the box”?
  • How good is their prototype? Format, creativity etc


… And how’s the result? These pictures will tell thousand words 🙂


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