Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Understanding Your Company's Strategy and Empowering Employees to Make Decisions

The Can You Say What Your Strategy Is and Simple Rules for a Complex World readings allowed me to gain a greater understanding of my recent summer internship where I worked within Corporate Strategy. Prior to my internship experience, I perceived strategy, vision, mission, and value statements on company websites to be nothing more than shared platitudes. After having the opportunity to work in a Fortune 500, I realized that these pithy statements do have great meaning and consequences in the decision-making process. I would like to share my experience. 

Mylan is a generic drug company located about 30 minutes west of Pittsburgh, PA. It is the 2nd largest generic drug supplier in the U.S. Its mission is to provide the 7B people in the world access to life-saving drugs. How does this global breadth from a generic drug company translate to its tangibles? Mylan has a robust infectious disease medication portfolio. Every year it invests heavily in its production/manufacturing in order to drive prices down and to scale to the need of 3rd world countries. One of the key values in Mylan is integrity. Integrity is specifically relevant to Mylan because counterfeit medicine prevalence is very high globally and subsidies from non-profits are a significant revenue to make infectious disease drugs affordable. 

During my internship, Mylan was undergoing a vision change from a generic drug company (an unknown company to many consumers) to a health company. The strategy was to implement an aggressive brand strategy to gain greater recognition. Mylan changed all its pill bottles to a distinct blue tone with a recognizable marker so pharmacists know exactly which meds are the high-quality, affordable Mylan products. Mylan grew its Public Policy division (located in DC) to target education boards in key states so its staple Epi-Pen product (for allergies) can be provided and available in every public school system. All the intern teams were strongly encouraged to think of new initiatives to increase Mylan's reach to the global population in a recognizable way. For example, giving out free HIV diagnostic tests was approved in certain developing nations to drive up the demand for Mylan's HIV drugs. We were told that it doesn't matter if the initiative was not profitable - the benchmark was set at break-even. 

The "simple rules" for the interns were innovation, collaboration, and a greater social good. As long as we can justify the ideas within these 3 areas, it was incorporated into the recommendations. It was through this experience that I saw how a developing strategy move from the abstract to actionable tasks. 

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.