sales and distribution guidance
Don't be seduced by large companies, international channels, and hiring a ton of salespeople right off the bat... BIG mistake!
I've seen some pretty interesting things during my tenure in the life sciences business. Some things are just anomalies... but other mistakes just keep repeating themselves over and over. Here are a few:
- Making a deal with a large distributor like VWR or big company like PerkinElmer and expecting them to rock your world. If you must make a deal, be sure they also have some skin in the game or you will have zero leverage. Sure, the initial press release turns some heads but performance is typically dismal... unless it is set up correctly.
- Setting up international channels right away because some distributor from Japan expressed an interest. I had a client... really smart people... get seduced by this. They actually traveled to Japan to set up a distributor only to see zero orders in the next year. International business is great for certain things, but outside of a few exceptions, don't do it right away.
- Traveling to every corner of the globe just because... I remember one company who set up several very expensive trips to Europe sending instrumentation back and forth on the hopes that this 'key player' would buy something. They based their justification on a big name company that wanted to try it... there wasn't even a strong commitment!! Here's the kicker... their Board of Directors' approved it!
- Convincing yourself that due to your hot technology hiring more salespeople will mean more sales. Wrong assumption. You could put one hundred salespeople out there and it will not make a difference... the marketplace is like one giant organism... and it will buy in big numbers when it is ready!