Pharma: Is Your Brand Surviving or Thriving? Lessons From Polar Bears and First Peoples of Canada

 Just back from sub-arctic Churchill, Canada, also known as the “Polar Bear Capital of the World,” we had an amazing opportunity to not only see these magnificent animals ‘up close and personal’, but to also meet and talk with some of the First Peoples (which include the First Nations, Inuit and Metis) who shared their interesting history and stories.

Churchill is a small, northern town in the Canadian province of Manitoba and is located on the shore of the Hudson Bay, where the polar bears descend from October to mid-November as they wait for the Bay to freeze, so they can go back out and hunt for ringed seals. The only way to reach this remote settlement is by prop plan or a 40-hour train journey from Winnipeg. (We flew on none other than ‘Calm Air’.)

The first thing that we were told as we were greeted in Churchill: “ At this time of the year, there is every possibility of a polar bear wondering into town, and remember,  they haven’t eaten since July!… In other words, the bear warnings posted around town are not for show or to give tourists a frisson! [We also learned two important lessons should you come face-to-face with a polar bear:  1) do not run and 2) do not play dead.]

Continue reading

Can Pharma Marketers Glean Insight From 10 Successful Entrepreneurs?

In a recent article by Inc., a group of visionaries share their reflections on the rise to prominence of entrepreneurship, and how their lives and perspectives have changed over the course of the past 30 years. What insights surrounding innovation and leadership can Pharma Marketers glean today?

1.  Donny Deutsch: There are No Geniuses 

This frees you up to think “I can do that”  ( …We desperately need this kind of thinking in business right now…)

2.  Scott Cook: Why Culture Matters 

“People who suggest the end of the workplace totally misunderstand the social nature of work.  There is a social fabric to work.”  His greatest entrepreneurial legacy has been fostering an environment of open-mindedness and a culture where great ideas are nurtured  (Sound familiar in Pharma’s highly political environment? I don’t think so…)

Continue reading

Neuroscience in Business: What we can’t do while ‘multi-tasking’

The brain does not multi-task. This simple biological fact has huge implications for business…says Marsha Shenk in her blog “Neuroscience in Business: What we can’t do while Multi-Tasking.”

Marsha, long time friend, business anthropologist, and student of leadership in commerce is in the continual search for how organizations and the people in them can do more than succeed, but thrive in today’s tumultuous environment…

So what if your corporate culture accepts-even demands-multi-tasking? (Do you know one that doesn’t these days?)

As Marsha writes, “You’re as sharp as a drunk driver. You will miss-and misinterpret- as much of what is going on around you as someone who could be arrested for DWI…

Not only will you miss important information, you certainly will not generate new questions or solutions. Responsive to market changes? Forget it. Figuring out new ways to deploy resources? Not a chance.”

…Imagine we’re in an economic downturn (sound familiar?)– markets and people are worried, jittery, fearful…”Your enterprise will thrive – or not – based on your ability to:

  • Notice what’s going on-Be curious about what might be valuable in this new reality
  • Generate new solutions for new concerns
  • Provoke Customers’ curiosity about new solutions.

Multi-tasking may be the most dangerous habit we’ve ever allowed,” says Marsha.

“Driving while talking on a cell phone is worse than driving drunk,” says John Medina, author of “Brain Rules.”  Continue reading