8 Keys to a Successful Pharmaceutical Meeting

Setting up a productive meeting or conference can be quite the challenge for meeting planners, and with pharmaceutical-based events, the logistics can make or break a company's communication success. Objectives need to be more distinct, proprietary information more guarded and terminology medicinally specific.

Before you begin the daunting task of pulling this distinct meeting together, review these eight key guidelines we’ve put together to get the most out of your event.

[if !supportLists]1. [endif]Have a clear purpose based on the needs of your audience. Clear objectives should be evident and put forth in the agenda. Engage the opinions and thoughts of leaders and physicians in your area of expertise, and your company’s target product or products, to develop the program.

[if !supportLists]2. [endif]Invite the right experts. Try utilizing a panel discussion to explain or promote your product. Keep it diverse to encourage insight and opportunity.

[if !supportLists]3. [endif]Focus on synergy. Blend experts with novices in your meeting for well-rounded input.

[if !supportLists]4. [endif]Have a solid meeting moderator. Meetings are meant to be productive, so find a moderator who is dynamic, speaks clearly and remains focused on the agenda.

[if !supportLists]5. [endif]Clarify expectations. Create agendas that meet the objectives of your company, the presenter and the audience.

[if !supportLists]6. [endif]Brainstorm ways to heighten participant engagement. Encourage participants to engage before the meeting with surveys or questionnaires. Get them invested in the meeting and audience participation will increase.

[if !supportLists]7. [endif]Prepare action steps. Designating and defining roles is crucial to any meeting to ensure the product or project moves toward the specific goals.

[if !supportLists]8. [endif]Summarize. Document clear follow-up communication through video, audio or meeting minutes to provide a valuable summary of what transpired at the meeting.

At Normandy Farm, meeting and conference manager Suzanne Gildea coordinates close to 500 successful pharmaceutical meetings annually. “Startup drug companies just getting traction in the industry, and larger players like Merck and Johnson & Johnson, have hosted their events here,” she notes.

She goes on to add, “Some of the most popular types of meetings we coordinate revolve around annual conferences, employee training on new drugs and regulations, vendor fairs and new prescription drug launches. We are also considered the ‘go-to site’ for the more social gatherings such as dinners, teambuilding and award ceremonies.”

The pharmaceutical industry is a unique market with many privacy concerns and laws that need to be understood and respected during off-site meetings. We’re adept at adhering to this special environment—and our clients appreciate it, right down to the industry-specific contracts and addendums.

Normandy Farm takes privacy concerns and requirements very seriously because we know that the information discussed may be proprietary; we make every effort to ensure the strictest confidentiality. These meetings are not posted on our reader board or social media channels. We also remain mindful of other similar events or meetings running concurrently on the grounds. Last but not least, we shred all materials left behind.

Here are Suzanne’s top three things to consider when booking a pharmaceutical meeting with Normandy Farm:

[if !supportLists]1. [endif]Clarify the full vision and objectives of the meeting with the meeting planner. Normandy Farm can then shape its guidance, product and space selection to most accurately reflect your needs.

[if !supportLists]2. [endif]Share information regarding past meetings held to determine what worked and what didn’t.

[if !supportLists]3. [endif]Communicate event basics such as headcount, preferred spaces and any dietary considerations.

Suzanne says, “With an event like this, attention to detail is everything. We may have the same individuals with us for a week at a time, so we strive to offer variety in menus, breakout rooms and teambuilding activities. During the planning process, I make it my personal goal to never leave any stone unturned and to focus on the guests to make sure their experience at Normandy Farm is handled professionally and with enthusiasm and dedication, so that the event a success.”

Located just 25 minutes from Center City Philadelphia and situated in the heart of Blue Bell, Pa., Normandy Farm Hotel and Conference Center is more than a meticulously restored American landmark—it's a fully wired, high-tech hospitality venue. Relax on our grand terrace, sip a cocktail in America's oldest silo, play a challenging game of golf on our championship course, plan an event with us or dine on our delectable farm-to-table cuisine. It all adds up to One Historic Experience.

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