6 - Rising Above Impossible Competition (Coaching w/Paul Mullen)

You don’t have to be an entrepreneur to be entrepreneurial... 

As an engineer, I’ve always been interested in the medical sales industry.  Highly technical medical devices are engineered, developed, tested and brought to market.  It takes a special person to have not only the technical knowledge, but also the wherewithal and patience to make a positive impact on one of the most competitive sales industries on the planet. Medical sales is by nature largely entrepreneurial, overwhelmingly competitive and extremely intense.

Paul and Lucas Mullen

Paul and Lucas Mullen

"If you're out there on your own you're going to get swallowed up" -Paul Mullen

I learned more than I ever would have imagined working through a day in the life of my good friend, Medical Sales Professional, Paul Mullen of the Volcano Corporation, a subsidiary of Philips.  

At Volcano, Paul’s job is to help patients restore blood flow to their legs, using very specialized atherectomy devices and I love the passion he has for his patients.  

It was also great catching up with Paul.  He and I went to the University of South Florida together and I never knew how on point Paul is with knowing exactly what he’s after day in and day out.  I developed an entirely new respect for what he’s doing, and the people working hard in this profession do each day.

We took a deep dive and did our best to develop practical strategies for improving productivity and effectiveness in this unique space.  We touched on the many challenges and struggles, not only with productivity, but with the job as a whole.  

Anti-Ribfest with Paul Mullen

If you recall Episode 4, when we went “Pig Jigging” with Chris Whitney, a few episodes back, and maybe I just have an affection for people who smoke and grill ribs, but Paul’s founded his own slow-cooking charity, the Anti-Ribfest for All Children’s Hospital.

Paul Mullen (Anti-Ribfest 2015)

Paul Mullen (Anti-Ribfest 2015)

In fact, The Make it Snappy Productivity Show took part in the festivities with Paul this year and had a great time (winning #1 best ribs, NOT the overall competition), and made a cool video about it:

The "Make it Snappy" Productivity Show at Anti-Ribfest.

Hopefully we’ll see a lot of our Make it Snappy listeners come out to support this great cause next year; we’d love to have you join to party.

I’d like to extend a very special thanks to Paul and Jamie Mullen for being such good friends over the years and such strong supporters of the show. It’s my absolute pleasure to introduce Paul to all of you; please leave a comment and let us know what you think about the show!


Selected Links from the Episode


Show Notes

  • Why we wanted Paul Mullen on the Make it Snappy Productivity Show [5:22]
  • The shift from established market to a new market [6:04]
  • What is the deal with atherectomy? [8:04]
  • The #1 thing on Paul’s mind today [10:44]
  • What would make this coaching session a productive experience? [11:34]
  • Paul’s goals (5x5) [14:21]
  • Being strategic about physicians [15:13]
  • Medical Devices and switch hitting [17:35]
  • The drawback to being a likable person [19:30]
  • Launching a new device and being the expert [22:18]
  • Lone wolves get swallowed up [22:43]
  • How do you make the best use of your time? [22:59] 
  • Six-month lag time [25:18]
  • You only have one minute - can’t afford to waste time [29:30]
  • It’s like playing “Clue,” doing a lot of discovery…[30:15]
  • So what’s your strategy, what’s slowing you down? [32:46]
  • Early adopters and the Catch 22 [35:40]
  • Fighting the urge and knowing when to walk away [37:10] 
  • Productivity killers [38:09]
  • Closing open loops/sacrificing accuracy for speed [40:52] 
  • What are you doing to get it out of your head?  (Do it!) [43:38]
  • What’s the next logical step? [47:32]
  • On Anti-Ribfest [50:59]
  • Location-based lists for errands [52:41]
  • Shifting the way we think about e-mail [54:52]
  • Blocking out time on your calendar for the important stuff [56:47]
  • Paul’s notes and action items [1:00:14]
  • If you were a homeless guy… [1:04:05]
  • Turning something we enjoy into a benefit for others [1:07:11]