Rachel has enjoyed a career of more than two decades within the Mundipharma network of independent associated companies. Now Strategic Projects Lead at Mundipharma International Limited, she explains how her success has been founded on seizing opportunities:
Q: You have a senior commercial role at Mundipharma today, but this has not always been your specialty, has it?
A: Not at all. I joined Napp Pharmaceuticals more than 20 years ago to work on the IT help desk, which is a great way to learn about human behavior that’s for sure. The move into sales and marketing came about thanks to my manager at the time, who supported me in this fairly radical change to my career direction. That first move was the beginning of my journey to where I am today. It’s certainly an unconventional career pathway and I feel very lucky to have had so many opportunities made available to me.
Q: That pathway has had a few further twists and turns along the way, hasn’t it?
A: Indeed it has. At one point I was appointed Director of Organizational Culture, leading change management programs as well as organizing a Mundipharma family day with a barbecue for 1,400 people! I also had an exciting stint as European Commercial Manager for Respiratory, which involved a pan-EU medicines launch for a respiratory medicine that really cemented me within the commercial sphere. I even won the Pharma Times European Marketer of the Year award in 2012, which isn’t bad for someone who started in IT.
Q: How did Mundipharma support you as you became established within the commercial area?
A: Without the training and support I received, and the belief my managers had in me when I changed roles, it’s safe to say that I would not be in the position I am today. Every time I moved into an unfamiliar area, I felt completely supported. I was given the opportunity to learn new areas and more importantly, genuinely felt I was open to fail without fear of retribution.
Q: Would you say your career progression is the main reason you’ve chosen to stay within the organization for these past 20-plus years?
A: If I didn’t enjoy the working environment and the brilliant people around me, my career progression would not be enough to have kept me here for so long, although getting through a steep learning curve in many different roles has generally made every day different from the previous one and that is always fun. From the moment I stepped through the door, I felt lucky to be in an environment where people are well-looked after but also one where we are challenged to play our part in helping Mundipharma make a difference to patients’ lives.
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