You Want To Be in Surgical Sales? Shocker!



Best Experienced With:          MIA;           Paper Planes


(please right click on the link below to open up a new window and cue up the suggested background music for this treaty.  The sexiest Tamil rapper in the history of Tamil rappers)




So, you want to get into medical or surgical sales?   Really?  Well, there’s a shocker!  That’s certainly not something I hear every day.  Do you understand that most everyone between the ages of 23 and 35 wants to be in medical and surgical sales?  Do you understand that it involves discipline and sacrifice if you want to be wildly successful over a long event horizon? 


Do you understand that it is not sexy or glamorous in any way, shape,  or form?  It’s not.  I’ve lived it for twenty-three years and while surgical sales is fascinating and very rewarding, it is no more glamorous than selling hosiery because all of the keys to success are the same.   There is an algebraic formula for happiness that involves reality as one variable and expectations as the other.  This MLOG is the reality……….you are in charge of the expectation variable.


Is it fulfilling?  Oh, heck yes!  You see a five year old being wheeled into an operating room in a red wagon, holding his mommy’s hand to have a new valve put into his or her heart and then see the parents crying tears of joy later when the surgeon says it was a complete success?  That’s cash money!  You get to watch some of the most amazing things in the world standing in surgery all day.  You get to see lives saved and lives extended.


That is exactly 1.3% of the job.  The rest is hard work.  Not as hard as slinging asphalt or breaking up concrete and rebar driveways, but close.  I have done all three of those jobs and, done properly, all three are hard work.  Sales, done properly, is not glamorous.  It is an awesome career, but it is not a fancy career.


When someone says they want to be in sales, I think of my favorite Thomas Gray poem.  Especially the parts about being “with caution bold” and “nor all that glisters gold”.  Here is an excerpt of the poem.  You are welcome!


Presumptuous maid! with looks intent
Again she stretched, again she bent,
Nor knew the gulf between.
(Malignant Fate sat by and smiled)
The slippery verge her feet beguiled,
She tumbled headlong in.



Eight times emerging from the flood
She mewed to every watery god,
Some speedy aid to send.
No dolphin came, no Nereid stirred;
Nor cruel Tom, nor Susan heard;
A favorite has no friend!
From hence, ye beauties, undeceived,
Know, one false step is ne’er retrieved,
And be with caution bold.
Not all that tempts your wandering eyes
And heedless hearts, is lawful prize;
Nor all that glisters, gold.





My father is a meat broker and I was fortunate to grow up watching him sell meat all day long.  He spent every waking moment banging the phones, calling accounts, and asking for orders.  Day after day he asked the same question: “do you need anything from me today”?  I have heard him say that one hundred times a day and heard him say it at least forty times the last time I was home, sitting with him at the kitchen table.  Dad is over seventy and he still sells meat for Mike’s Meats.  Why?  Because he loves to sell and his customers love to buy from him. 


It was through watching my father as a child that I understood that sales is not sexy.  My father also taught me through example that sales is a numbers game, a game of discipline, and a game that demands a Teflon exterior.  My pop heard “no” over and over and over and his demeanor never changed for that next phone call.  None of that “oh, I got messed over and should not have lost” or “oh, woe is me, I lost a deal”.  When he did not get an order, he would call the next person on the list and ask that person to order a little bit more.


That is the true essence of sales in any market space.


Want to do a little self check to see whether you have the potential to be a great sales person in any industry?  We are not going not going to check your work or pass papers to the person behind you.  Please be honest with yourself because this is all about you.


  1. You buy wedding cards a week before the wedding, not on the way to the wedding.
  2. You keep your house and/or car clean on a regular basis.  You don’t let it go to hell in a hand basket and then scramble every ten days to get it back to normal.
  3. You can have a 90 second phone conversation without getting your feelings hurt.
  4. You like to read and read at least two books a month.
  5. You enjoy being measured and compared against others daily, weekly and monthly.  For example, in college did you prefer the professors that posted final grades with your name or did you prefer when they used your Social Security number?
  6. Did you sneak in late at night to look at those grades or did you look in broad daylight with a big crowd around you?
  7. When someone breaks up with you, do you move on rapidly (within a day) knowing that there are 3,000,000 of the opposite sex out there?
  8. You believe “a place for everything and everything in its place”
  9. You started working by ninth grade and have worked every week since then
  10. You have participated in both team sports (football, basketball, soccer), as well as individual sports (track, swimming, gymnastics)
  11. You know how to write and you like to write. 
  12. You love to ask questions
  13. After answering questions, you actively listen instead of waiting your turn to speak.
  14.  When you dust, do you take things off of what you are dusting or just leave them in place?
  15. Are you able to say “no” and do you actually say “no”?



Here are a few that are surgical sales specific:


  1. You like to get up early….…..early being 4:45 a.m.
  2. You like being at “the office” at 5:30 a.m.  You should be in your hospitals by 6:00 a.m. at the latest. 
  3. You are able to roll with the punches because each planned day will deconstruct by 8:43 a.m. as all the previously scheduled cases change dramatically.
  4. You enjoy learning human anatomy and physiology and have a deep desire to learn more and more about it.  Then more, when it changes.
  5. You don’t mind sacrificing your play time the first two years in surgical sales so that you can learn more than anyone else in your market space.
  6. You do not mind standing all day long in the operating room, five days a week.
  7. You love watching people get fixed, with all the blood and removal of tissue that this entails. 
  8. If you are a female, you are willing to forsake mega makeup and big hair.
  9. If you are a male, you are willing to forsake mega makeup and big hair
  10. If you are a zebra, you are willing to forsake your stripes.  And big hair.


Check yourself with those twenty five items and please share them with your friends and family that want to join us in the surgical sales community.  We welcome fresh talent!  A rising tide lifts all boats so come on in and make us all better at what we do!



Just please make certain that you understand the last line in that poem. 




The Mind of Mully



No one on the corner has swagger like us

Hit me on my burner, prepaid wireless

We pack and deliver like UPS trucks

Already going hell just pumping that gas


Glove Man:  best sales person ever...and still selling

Glove Man: best sales person ever...and still selling

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