Transitioning into an MSL role is not easy. It requires a lot of hard work, more work than you think. Below are 4 tips on how to prepare.
1. Be fully knowledgeable on the MSL role. Your past experience or knowledge will not get you the MSL role. Only what you will start to upskill from now on about the MSL role will get you that MSL role. Make sure to mention what have done to prepare for this MSL role/interview on your CV/LinkedIn profile, only this way the hiring mangers know that you are ready for this role. The hiring manager wants to get the feeling you know everything about the MSL role, despite you have never been an MSL before. Does (s)he writes, speaks, thinks, dress, engages and presents like an MSL? It must be a MSL then!
2. Become a subject matter expert. Don't think you are a subject matter expert already (as a PhD or postdoc - you are a research expert!). You need to be a CLINICAL subject matter expert. You need to upskill on the treatment management of the disease, standards of care (SoC), patient referral pathways, 1st/2nd/3rd line treatment, phase 3 clinical data of all the products, safety of the product, management of side effects, genetic testing, and more.
3. Practice your interview answers to the most commonly asked MSL behavioral questions ahead of time. You can't wing it. Write them all out, and practice them to death (and listen to yourself and cut the uhs and umss!!!). This writing out will take a lot of time, but it will serve you well. As you will be able to give the perfect crafted answer in a smooth way ".. my three key MSL attributes are ...", rather than provide a laundry list. Furthermore, you can easily move from a difficult to answer questions, to one that you know you are able to answer perfectly, showing you are in control. This long list of questions is easy to review prior to the interview, as it only takes you 10-15 minutes to review it again. And if there was a question during the interview you hadn't prepared for, put it on your list for the next interview.
4. Get a coach/mentor who has been an MSL him/herself. They know what it is like to be in the field and can guide you through the interview process.
To learn more about MSL hiring process click here
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