The pharmaceutical industry discovers, develops, produces, and markets drugs or pharmaceutical drugs for use as medications to be administered (or self-administered) to patients, with the aim to cure them, vaccinate them, or alleviate the symptoms. If we talk about the market scenario post-covid, the industry has experienced many changes since then.
Dr. V.K Sharma, Chief Enabling Officer, Dezin Consulting Pvt. Ltd. is an expert Pharma consultant for Top financial institutions and Market research companies across Globe. He has a proven track record of turning around business, Customized business Strategy, Leadership & Coaching. He has also been listed in “100 Most Influential Marketing Leaders'' by the world marketing Congress and many other accolades.
Dezin Consulting Pvt. Ltd. focuses on Pharma/Healthcare Business consultation, Leadership & Life Coaching, Leadership Training/ workshops to turn around in business, with building and implementing a customized strategy that suits the business.
Dezin focused on the pharma/ healthcare business
Dr. Sharma explains, “There are some pharma companies with good manufacturing facilities which produce quality medicines, but they are unable to make business case. Many of them are doing pretty good business in the international market, but not in the Indian market, therefore Dezin consulting approaches these companies with a customized plan, which is largely based on their strengths, we don't restrict ourselves just for making an excellent plan, we get it implemented also so as to see the results. And it's more so customized because X Company has different requirements from the Y Company. So we operate accordingly,” he says.
On being amongst 100 most influential Marketing Leaders and other accolades
Dr. Sharma shares his thoughts, “It makes me feel a little more responsible and accountable because once you are awarded in the public domain, the expectation of the people goes up. So wherever we work, our credibility is always at stake because it's not about taking any assignment, it's about delivering that assignment. And so it makes me feel more responsible that way,” he says.
The biggest change is the customer
Dr. Sharma shares thoughts on his three decades of experience in the healthcare industry and what has changed since then, “There are significant changes. I will just name a few. The first biggest change is the customer. If we look three decades back, we used to look at doctors as our customers, today retailers and pharmacists have also occupied a very big space. A lot of corporates have come in, thereby means of pharmacy chains, then the E-pharmacies have come which are growing as good as 70-80%. And third of course is the patient. Patients used to be taken for granted by the pharma companies, but now as per the survey, more than 52% of the people do self-medication and choose the brand and the company where they want to buy. Another important customer is the corporate hospitals and private doctors. So on the customer front, there is the biggest change in the industry. If you look at the last three decades, India which was a non-regulated market is becoming a semi-regulated market, so there is pressure on the company regarding regulations. Another big change is in the form of marketing, the way we used to plan promotional inputs, people used to ask for the samples, some gifts like wall clock, etc which was very normal, but today, it is more about Academic and Social needs. And lastly, I would like to add, important changes that are coming from youngsters because youngsters with the help of the internet they know by and large everything, we can only share the wisdom. And they are very assertive and always in a hurry. So dealing with all those people, that’s another change,” he says.
Challenges faced by the healthcare pharma industry in India
Dr. Sharma speaks, “One challenge is moving from the non-regulation to regulation. There are regulations regarding price, packaging, and guidance for quality, whose pressure is coming on the pharma industry. The government is putting pressure through NLEM on the pricing. That is another pressure on the pharma industry at the same time maintaining the quality is a challenge because in India interesting things happen, like Indian politics, a lot of regional companies are there, so apart from the few companies or like few political parties, there are multiple regional companies. So, there is competition inside and there is competition outside, if you look 20 years back, the competition was less than the USA market or the European market. When we look at countries like China, Vietnam, Bangladesh, they start competing as far as the formulation is concerned. So, it has started becoming more difficult for companies to perform. Margins are squeezing and one can say kind of becoming a very competitive business,” he says.
Thoughts on his book - Leadership coaching in India
Dr. Sharma shares his views, “So if we look at Leadership Coaching, it is the first book in India for leadership coaching which as such is a very unexplored area in the Indian market, not only pharma but non-pharma too. Till now, we usually see only the trainings, whether it's X Company or Y Company, training remains the same, but the problem of different companies are different and different training has to be customized. Within the same company, there are 10 managers/ leaders, their requirements, their problems are different, but the training given is similar to all. In the coaching, we make it one-on-one coaching, and on the basis of what is required. In the coaching, we only assist a person to find a solution and we ensure that person finds a solution and this way we help leaders and different corporates to realize their dream, vision, and potential. So in this book, people can read and easily find relevant information as I have written from an Indian point of view. And I have stated, the evolution of coaching, starting from the Victoria coach, student coaching, whether a railway coach, a sports Coach, How have we run evolution in the past? How it is different from training, mentoring, or psychological counseling? I have answered, All the relevant questions people can have - How many sessions will be there? How to choose a coach? What benefits can be there? Whether it works or does not work? How to relate to the psychometric test? Or how do we know, NLP can help in this? So all the relevant questions about what a leader should have about coaching or about the process, have been answered in a brief and precise manner. Also, the book contains no jargon, it's a straight talk for easy understanding,” he says.
(Edited by Rabia Mistry Mulla)