7 tips for working with MLR
Following a few simple rules of etiquette (and common sense) can help speed the copy review process.
As a biotech manager you have probably sat through your share of challenging copy review sessions. Here are 7 ways you can build enduring relationships across departments and help make the review process less arduous.
1. Get agreement from MLR on sticky copy points before the meeting.
If you are unsure about a claim you are trying to make, call MLR to ask their viewpoint. As experts, we all like to be consulted. Showing courtesy—exhibiting an attempt to consider matters from a perspective other than your own—will win you trust and respect. MLR will regard you as someone who is straightforward and open, not someone who might be trying to sneak something past.
2. Give MLR time to review materials before the meeting.
Interpreting data and checking references takes time and concentration. To avoid having a long, drawn-out meeting, give MLR sufficient time to do its job.
3. Avoid making outrageous claims.
Biotech managers are in the business of promotion, so MLR might expect you to push the envelope—as long as you resist pushing it so it drops with a thud in someone’s lap. Consider using words such as can, may, and help in your promotional claims.
4. Follow up; make good on your promises.
If you promise to check on a reference or look further into the accuracy of a data point, follow through on your promise. MLR will see you as someone who is reliable—and who has a firm handle on his or her account.
5. Treat MLR as allies, not as adversaries.
No one likes to feel like a cop, except maybe a cop. Respect those in other departments. Like you, they have a job to do. If your job is to devise sound strategy for promoting the product, understand that their job is to protect patients from false efficacy claims and the company from potential litigation.
6. Read up on the category.
Although you may lack the extensive knowledge of MLR, you can still have a good grasp of a product’s disease category. Know the science behind your product. Your colleagues will respect you as someone who is more than just a slick marketing person.
7. Be on time and have sufficient copies for all reviewers.
Make sure also that the references you supply have been adequately highlighted and annotated to ease the labor of fact checking.
I won’t promise that following these simple etiquette rules will guarantee a smooth review of your sales aid or flash card, but I can say that it may help. Showing courtesy to colleagues will bolster your reputation. Reviewers will go out of their way to help you.