Why you should never work for Stryker (the surgical equipment company)!
Stryker is a surgical equipment/instrument company (like Guidant, Sklar, Roboz, Millenium, and others). For me as a medical sales recruiter, Stryker stands out among medical sales companies, and not in a good way.
The reason I believe that you should never work for Stryker is that I have never seen anyone have a long-term relationship with them in my 17+ years in the medical sales industry. They don’t invest in their people, they don’t promote well, and they don’t have a problem firing people–I think they pink-slip the bottom 25% almost every quarter. You might say, “Well, I’m better than the bottom 25%, so I don’t have a problem.” But, there are circumstances that can easily be beyond your control–for example, maybe there’s a GPO (Group Purchasing Organization) or some other group organization your hospital belongs to…if they sign a contract with another vendor, then they quit working with you. You did nothing to cause that, and you have no control over it, but it makes a massive difference in your sales territory numbers. All of a sudden, you drop to the bottom 25%, and you’re let go. Is that the kind of commitment you want from a company that you work for and invest sweat, blood and tears for? I don’t think so. (It’s not a good references opportunity, either.)
Surgical companies do pay tremendous amounts of money, if you do well at it. However, you have to be able to be in the surgical suite at 5AM in order to be available to surgeons, and those surgeons are a pain in the tail. They (mostly) have egos as big as Texas, and they expect that you will pander to them. And if you don’t, they have 3 or 4 vendors sitting right behind you who will. (Story: I had a friend who went to work for one of these companies–for a year and a half, although he no longer works there. He did make $300,000, but he also said that was the year his hair turned gray. He had no family life, he felt stressed the entire time, and he felt as if the competition was right on his heels. You could say that’s just him, but that’s some tremendous job stress for anybody.)
When I see “Stryker” on a resume, I don’t want to even talk to the person. In my mind, they’re somewhat “ruined.” They’ve been able to make very big money, and they will always think that’s what they’re worth, in any job. In reality, they aren’t worth that unless they can continue to work at that particular pace, selling that particular product, dealing with that particular nasty little customer–surgeons.
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Written by Peggy McKee - the medical sales recruiter
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