In this episode, Samuel Adeyinka interviews Marc Toth, who shares his entrepreneurial journey in the cardiovascular medical device sales industry. He discusses how to find the right medical device for your company, determine which products are in demand nowadays, and make sure you’re getting a good deal on each purchase. He discusses why the future of the healthcare industry in the United States lies not in hospital buildings but in surgery centers. Marc also touches on things that truly matter beyond medical products: empathy, self-awareness, culture, and more. Tune in now and learn how to wiggle your way into many thriving opportunities!
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Cardiovascular Medical Device Sales With Marc Toth
In this episode, we have with us another special guest and he goes by the name of Marc Toth. Who is Marc Toth? Without saying too much, I’ll share with you this. He’s a thought leader in the cardiovascular space. He’s been in that space for many years. He routinely speaks at national cardiovascular meetings on cardiovascular out-migration trends. He’s gone so far as to even help with the government affairs board bringing cardiovascular expertise to the lobbying efforts in adding additional cardiovascular CPT codes to the covered procedures list for surgery centers.
Marc is doing quite a bit. If you’re someone out there that’s thinking about getting into medical device sales or transitioning to a different field within medical device sales, this is an episode you want to read because if cardiovascular is something you haven’t done before, this is something that you want to learn from and dig deep into. As always, thank you for reading. I hope you enjoy this interview.
Marc, how are you doing?
Samuel, I’m doing great.
Why don’t you tell us who you are and what you do?
We perform cardiovascular procedures, including stenting, pacemaker implantation and peripheral arterial disease. I started a company that built in developed surgery centers like this. What led me to that was a long career as a med device rep in the cardiovascular world launching products for big companies like several startup companies, transformational cardiovascular technology, building sales teams and creating distributors internationally.
After that, I decided to go back to grad school and become an M&A advisor. I was working with the same physicians I used to sell stents to help them raise money and open their outpatient centers. I run into them on the other side of the table and vice reps come into our office trying to sell us their gear into our surgery centers.
We’re going to dive back into history but let’s make it crystal clear. Med rep, entrepreneurship and then from entrepreneurship back into the corporate space. Is that correct?
In a sense, although I started a surgery center company from scratch in 2017 and we sold that. That was entrepreneurship. I joined the company when we were 50 employees. We’re now 800 employees. I’m still part of, “Let’s get things on the ground floor, build it and launch it.” We are corporate with $150 million in sales for corporate but I’ve been here since the beginning.
What is it that you specifically do in your role?
What we do is find cardiologists to invest in surgery centers with us. We own a majority position. We then develop, build, get Medicare approved and open a surgery center with cath labs. This is an outpatient cath lab outside the hospital’s standalone building. We syndicate, which means we sell shares for physicians to invest. Once they invest, we’re partners. We hold different relationships. We’re partners with the physicians. We have a team that does HR and an IT team. We do revenue cycle management, procurement, Medicare accreditation and contracting with the payers.
The physicians come in, do their case and leave. We have six-minute room turnovers. We don’t have call schedules, not open on the weekends from 8:00 to 5:00 shop. The staff loves to work there. The physicians like the efficiency. The patients like that their copay is lower. Our cases are about half the cost of a hospital’s case. Patients have a lower copay. The physician has skin in the game.
The physician gets paid his or her professional fees for the case like they normally would at the hospital. If they get $500 to put in a stent in a hospital, they get $500 to put in a stent in our surgery center. For them, it’s the same. The difference is they don’t own any part of the hospital but they own the surgery center. Once profits are derived and that physician owns 5 shares, he or she gets 5% of the profits.
Their partners and not employees.
When it comes to device selection and they have skin in the game, if their company and they profit, do they need to use the $400 or the $200 wire? It’s the only way they’re going. It’s a different mentality. Having them as partners, I was on the other side of the table trying to sell them the $400 wire. Now, I’m trying to have this $200 wire because of its ability. I’m in a unique position to talk to your audience. I’ve followed a lot of your episodes. It’s a great show and great people. I love the stories of how they got into the device. I can tell you my story but that was many years ago.
I want to give a perspective of what it’s like, A) From the other side of the table and, B) What your options are and will be whether you’re 25 or 55 and you’re devices are starting. If that’s the end game and you want to be a device rep until you retire, hallelujah. I have plenty of friends in their 50s that are their device reps. Good for them. They’re making good money, work-life balance and career.
Others like myself, I got to the point where I was like, “I don’t want to chase doctors around it. I need something different.” I did entrepreneurial spirit or whatever you want to call it. That led me to go to vet school and do different things. The message I hope to share with your audience is siping to get into the med device and you want that first job plus that Tesla or Medtronic that let you drive. The money’s good in the President’s Clubs. To talk about my career, I started selling heart-lung machines back in the day. I won eight President’s Clubs. My wife loved it because we took glamorous vacations.Some people in medicine get to the point where they don’t want to chase doctors around anymore. They want something different. Click To Tweet
Was it at a college you jumped right into the industry or was there a traditional period where you were trying to figure it out?
I was very blessed. I went to business school. I came right out with a couple of job opportunities. One in insurance, retail and healthcare that is still around. I went in with a training class of fifteen other new reps. I’m still friends with five of those guys. We’re lifelong friends. I got put into the dietary products division. A little humble pie. You come out of Michigan with a business goal like, “I’m going to sell medical devices like a kid.”
If you’ve ever been in the basement of a hospital where the trayline is and most people don’t know what a trayline is, a trayline is a line with a conveyor belt and the trays roll down it. The foods are put on the trays, then go up to the person who has a diabetic diet. This guy feeds in the hospital. I was very fortunate to get that first job with a high-profile company. That led to the second job which was selling cars on machines. I had a six-figure job when I was 23 years old. I thought I hit the jackpot. I was fortunate. I had great success in Michigan. I had this baller status and had a great run. I then left to do a couple of startups. Some went well.
We got to see the mentality. Where was your head when you said, “I’m killing it now. I’m going to leave this and go try my hand in entrepreneurship?”
I look back and think it was intellectual boredom. I did it. I knew how to sell these heart-lung machines or devices called an oxygenator. I knew my market. I hit my number every year as we all do. We laid our number in December. I got to the point where I figured it out. That industry was getting a little stale because heart surgery was transitioning from cardiology to stenting.
Stenting was invented in the late ‘90s. This was about 2000. Open-heart surgeons have gone down. Some industry and personal changes. I had a chance to go with a very sexy startup company that had minimally invasive heart surgery. Thoracotomy access for cabbages. It was sexy. I chased the startup dream seven times. Also equity and we’re going to get rich and the whole thing. It turned me on. It stimulated me and that led to a couple of more startups.Chase the startup dream. If you go after it not just once but several times, you will get rich in the whole process. Click To Tweet
In between there, I had an opportunity to launch Johnson & Johnson’s fastest billion-dollar product ever in Johnson & Johnson’s history. I was a heart stent called Cypher. It’s the first drug-eluting heart stent in the world. It was April 23, 2002. I remember the date it was launched. We went out and sold $1 billion in that first year. I’ve done the startup from scratch and built sales teams to try to sell a new device.
With the seven startups and then when you mentioned that it’s your past like, “It started nothing.” We got to know how did someone do seven startups. Was it you did one startup, was successful and then make money from that and then to another one or was it a different type of experience?
There was almost always a key friend and professional colleague that took me from one to the next. Hardcore was the first one I did. Some hardcore guys left to chase their next dream. They were like, “We need a guy in the Midwest. Let’s bring Marc on.” I then got into management. “We need a region manager in the Midwest. Let’s bring Marc along.”
All of them reached completion or you were doing some things at the same time?
All the device companies either failed miserably, crashed or burned. Two of them exited the Bard twice. A funny story there, they usually get a one-year contract with the acquiring companies. We launched internationally for Bard and had a great run going Europe, this, that and the other. You learn more in those failures than in the successes.You learn more in failures than in your successes. Click To Tweet
If you’re in a tough spot and struggling to get punched in your device that doesn’t work with the FTAs after you’re struggling, hang in there because that makes you stronger. When I look at resumes and it’s 176% of the plan and I killed it, sometimes we don’t want to put those failures on our resume but that’s when you grow the most, in my opinion.
Those are the facts. Startup after startup finally led you to a healthcare company with your role. Talk to us a little bit about what it was like when you were wrapping up your last entrepreneurial venture and you said, “Let me grow the company.” What was going on there?
There’s something I certainly want to share with your audience. I’ll use a hockey analogy. You want to skate to where the pucks going to be. You’re excited to get that first job or interview for another job. That’s great but where do you want to be in 3, 5 or 7 years? That’s a cliché to ask. What is one out of their med device for their med sales career?
I got to a point somewhere when I was around 40 that I didn’t want to sell anymore. Selling is even region management. It took me down a road to go to grad school and become an M&A advisor, help raise money and help doctors run their businesses with more of a collaborative effort than a consultant rather than a catheter salesperson. That stimulated me. That gave me intellectual stimulation. It helped me grow and take my position with the physicians maybe to a different level from rep to consultant.
From there, I started to become a self-advocate. You’ve got your side hustle with the show, which I respect. I found my side hustle in developing and helping physicians start these surgery centers. There’s a lot to learn in building a surgery center. You don’t just open a building and turn the lights out of the surgery center.
What I saw and heard is what everybody was speculating. Many years ago, people were speculating that Medicare was going to approve heart stenting in the surgery center. People felt that was a watershed moment for more of these surgery centers to open and start doing parts. I started writing about it. Suddenly, I became a subject matter expert. I was asked to speak in meetings and published an article.
If anyone’s trying to hustle articles, editors of these journals love content. If you can’t track them down, they would usually want to get paid. Many of the articles in those journals are vendor-sponsored by GE or Boston Scientific. Content without a sales pitch, they love it. They had a couple of articles published in Cath Lab Digest and that led to others.
Self-advocacy helped put me on the map from a national perspective. We had a dozen centers and then that company got some notoriety. The company came after me to say, “We need a guy to run our cardiovascular division.” They read articles and things are going to take off in CV out-migration. I call it out-migration.
Cardiovascular procedures leave the hospital migrating to outpatient centers. That shift is on and in high gear. For the next years, many analysts are bullish and that’s going to continue to be the shift. I happen to be the one that wrote about it. I didn’t blog. I spoke about it. If anyone out there has a side hustle and is looking to do something different or become a subject matter expert, you don’t have to know anything different than everybody else does. If you can articulate it, publish it.
I like to write articles. I call them listicles. We’ve all seen listicles. There are 5 reasons medicare approved stenting and 4 ways to increase your profitability and surgery center. You don’t have to be a genius to recreate the wheel for four reasons. You have to give four logical reasons, not to plagiarize but everybody else is talking about it. If you can blog, podcast, tweet or write about it, it can put you in a position that I’m very blessed to be in, where I’m the one going to a big device company and leadership forum speaking.
I used to be a sales rep for that company many years ago and I’m speaking to their leadership in a different role. That’s my point to the readers who are trying to make a move in med sales. “I can’t wait to get that job selling pacemakers. I want to get into that capital salesforce. I want to get out of pharma. I want to get into pharma.” Those are great goals. I love the hustle but where do you want to go from there? Where’s the puck going to be in your career? Do you want to go into healthcare administration? Do you want to go in the surgery center world right there in a lot of different directions? That’s what I hope I can encourage people. That may not be the end of your destination in that cool Tesla that you get to drive.
It almost sounds like you’re encouraging everyone, entrepreneur or employee got to have an exit plan. You got to have a transitional plan of where you want to take things and the next phase of whatever your life looks like. It’s going to change. The change is going to come no matter what you want to do. What kind of change do you want to experience? To do that, you have to think steps ahead.
What things in life do we do that we don’t have a plan for? If you don’t have a plan or a target, what do you do? I was a big golfer and reading a book. Ben Hogan used to be super focused on his target. “Hit it down the middle of the fairway.” He’s like, “I’m going to hit it at that little tree on the left-hand side of the fairway and try to land it right there.” Specific goals and having the plan to get to that goal.
As things are changing, I challenge your audience to consider what happened in the last years with COVID in the pandemic. What I know has happened with the lockdown of reps getting into hospitals, rep tracks and these vendor devices that are meant to keep reps out of the hospital. What does that look like? Is that going to continue? Is the role of the rep going to be even harder than it was years ago when we’re sneaking up the back parking lot stairwell to meet the doctor before he goes to his car?
All the tricks that we’ve used to track down the doctors and hospitals are making it harder. COVID has given them an excuse to shut things down. If I’m not mistaken, it’s getting tougher to even access so how do you differentiate yourself? You’re the blogger. You know a lot about surgery centers and you can talk to the physicians about something other than your gadget. All you do is talk to them about your gadget and you can’t bring value about, “Did you read the article on migration trends? Did you read the article about what happened in this office space lab and why they’re shifting to a surgery center?” Bringing more value than just selling your gadget can get you a long way.
That brings me to an interesting question that I’m going to throw at you. I remember many years ago, in the very beginning, they were saying, “Reps are going to be done. In twenty years, the sales reps will not exist.” I was told that twenty years before that they were saying the same thing. I love the fact that you’re on the other side. You’ve had that entrepreneurial journey in between all within the same realm of healthcare. Where were you say the medical device sales rep is going to be ten years from 2023? Do you believe that there’ll be as many, more, less or none at all? What’s your take?
I’d love to see data. I don’t know if you may know it. How many cardiology, pharma or imaging reps were there in 1999, 2009 and 2019? I wonder what that would look like. I would guess it declined.
I’ve looked at some data not as far back as the 1990s but representatives in the pharmaceutical and medical device space are growing.
I would say two things about the future of med device reps. My guess would be and my perspective from the other side of the table is a rep with a technical background is more valuable. This isn’t me but when the nurse comes in and he or she is RN, had worked in the cath lab for ten years and now selling me this device, it’s like, “Street credibility. Clinical credibility. You know what you’re doing.” Does that mean that the company is going to hire more nurses? I don’t know but I would think that would be a trend. I’m going to have to go with the same story from the last years. I’m going to have to go then and COVID accelerated it, maybe I’m wrong. I remember when RevTrax was even around. Is that still around or is that different?
There are several RevTrax and competitors. Let me be 100% transparent. The data I looked at was pre-COVID. It went up in 2017 or something like that. However, even though access has gotten challenging, companies still see the value in having a sales force push a message. That has not gone away. To your point, more specialization helps but there’s still this belief that the more numbers we have to push this message, the better chance we have of being successful with COVID in mind.
I would submit this that as we see out-migration trends, from personal quick data, there are about 6,500 surgery centers in America, spine, pain, ortho and GI. Cardiology is faster and also ophthalmology. These centers all have highly compensated positions as leaders. The leaders of our centers, we call them CEOs, are running $20 million businesses and making six figures plus. They have a pretty good lifestyle. They don’t take a call and don’t work weekends.
It’s a pretty good career path. If you’re a tech or a nurse in a hospital and maybe you want to get out, that’s another option. Somehow being involved in the outpatient surgery center world is a pretty good place to be. Hospital administration jobs are going away because hospitals consolidate and try to cut costs. There’s a lot of fat, let’s be honest, in your credit hospitals. If you still want to take care of the patient, if that’s still important to you and you want to make good money and have a good work-life balance, working in a surgery center is a pretty good lifestyle.
Does your company hire people like that as well, like nurses that want to step into a space where they’re helping manage the surgery center?
Yes. The surgery center typically has three management positions. CEO is the leader, the Director of Nursing manages the nurses and then a BOM or Business Office Manager runs a $20 million company. The CEO is running that with 10, 12,15 or 20 staff members, a pretty nice 7:00 to 5:00 schedule, not a hospital we’re calling. We’re big in the culture we build here. We want to have this to be the company that everybody wants to work for. Culture is our foundation. We want to make that a great place to work and higher on the pay scale. I’m not trying to dissuade anybody on this show.
Not at all. This is a good avenue.
Suggestions and options too. “I’m a nurse in the cath lab. I hate calling. I hate weekends. I want to get out of the hospital.” Maybe an outpatient center or a device company makes sense.
What are the qualifications? Let’s say, for example, a travel nurse says, “I want to be in one location. I’m not sure I want to be a medical sales rep or a clinical specialist. I’m curious about what’s going on with this surgery center business.” What role are they most eligible for?
It depends on their background but we have pre and post-op nurses just like you have in the hospital, a coming-in surgeon or pre-op nurse. You leave and see a post-op nurse. Radiology techs, circulators in the OR and scrub techs right to pass instruments. Essentially, every job that’s in the hospital was done in a small building with 2 or 3 rooms instead of 20 ORs and a busy schedule.
It’s not like they’re sitting down eating doughnuts but it’s busy. The doctors own part of it. It’s a different culture. The doctors are on your team. It’s not hospital versus doctor and you can’t use that as why your doctor didn’t go before the value analysis committee. The doctor is like, “I don’t want to go to a value analysis committee. I want that device.” It’s a different mentality.
That makes me wonder too because you said culture is such a big piece of the company. I love that. Does that culture spill over into the surgery centers or the partner? Does the physician that you bring on to the team adopt the culture of the company or is that something that’s even vetted before you even allow that surgeon to be a partner?
We can’t bet that but they better toe the line. They’re going to see the culture. They’re going to be an owner. That’s the difference in the hospital. What do they have? What skin do they have in the game? They have skin in the game. They wrote a check. There was a six-figure check most likely to buy in that center. They want the nurses, techs and staff to love on them and vice versa. It’s different. I’m not trying to make a plug for coming to work in a surgery center.
It’s a great opportunity for readers. If they say, “I can see that,” then they need to read this. Don’t hold back.
We have about 30 of these centers or 6,000 out there. There are plenty of mom-and-pop ones. There is a couple of big national companies like Tenet and opt-in both have surgery center divisions and they own hundreds. There are lots of opportunities.
Are we going to see more of that large corporations or companies becoming corporations like Tenet and more players stepping into this space and buying up as many surgery centers as they can?
When both paid crazy numbers to buy the surgery center companies, everybody took note. I’ve often said and I don’t know if I’ve written about it but I probably will, my projection is that device companies will start buying surgery center companies because it’s becoming increasingly more difficult to differentiate your product versus that competitor. If my widget, hip or pacemaker is similar to my competitors but I own the surgery center and control the inflow of inventory, it’s a win for the device companies.
I don’t know how it’s going to work out legally. There are a lot of legalities behind that. I wouldn’t be surprised if we see pharma or device companies buying surgery centers. We’re certainly going to see insurance companies buy insurance products because they want to send them to their patients. The other term we use for the centers is value-based sites of service. We do the case for half the cost of the hospital. Who loves that? Insurance companies because it’s at the cost. Medicare and patients love it. Doctors own part of it.
It keeps everyone involved more flexible to do what they want to do what’s best for the patient.
Where the puck going to be in value-based care is not going to be at the big bloated hospital with a huge parking deck. Follow the green line to get to the cath lab and follow the red line to get to the cafeteria. Are these buildings 10,000 square feet-ish or 2 to 4 ORs? You parked right in the front door, get your pacemaker put in and your hip replaced and you drive home that day.
I’m not plugging a new podcast for surgery centers but maybe this will educate some of your readers that the shift is on. There are 6,000 in 2023. In 10 years, I don’t know, probably 10,000 surgery centers. They’re not going away. Tenet announced that they’re not building any more hospitals. They’re the largest hospital chain in the country. They’re not building hospitals. They’re building surgery centers. The future isn’t massive hospitals and big parking decks. That’s not where most care can be delivered. Highly acute care, trauma, ED? Sure, but routine, hip knee, heart stent, pacemaker, gallbladder, GI procedure in and out doing the surgery center.
Has it caused a bit of a scramble amongst powerful hospitals to get their hands on as many stereocenters as they can?
Many national health systems are figuring out that the out-migration is on and they want to be part of it. My company was founded by an investment from Banner Health in Arizona for a $13 billion health system. They saw the out-migration and said, “We want to be part of it.” We’re a hospital system. We don’t know how to build surgery centers. They had six surgery centers and were a hot mess. They formed my company in 2018 and said, “Build us 40 more, take over the 6 and make us profitable.”
We’re at 30 in 2023 and they’re all profitable. A major health system in Michigan has also invested in our company. We’re building 30 to 50 centers for that health system in Michigan. Health systems are getting it but some still bury their head in the sand and say, “I’m not worried about out-migration. We can live without it.” Some of the health systems are waking up to value-based care.
It’s about to get exciting in the space of healthcare in the next few years. We’re going to switch gears a little bit. This is great. You’re in a powerful position. You’re growing an organization. Now that you’ve been on the other side and you had experience, you had your business with it and have more experience with it doing even more than you were with your business, I’m sure you had an approach to how to be an ultimate medical device sales rep when you were a medical device sales rep, especially with all the success you had. What looks different coming from this highly experienced other side that you would have told that guy?
Lessons learned or what I see is the lack of self-awareness or EQ if you’re familiar with Emotional Intelligence. Self-awareness is one of the key components in life especially being a good salesperson sales professional I like to call them. I’m still floored at how many people are on a call or pitch drone on and on. I told a CEO of a startup company and wanted all of our business to stop talking. He talked for twelve minutes and didn’t ask a single question. I told him to stop. I’m not trying to criticize them. My point is understanding to listen more, be humble and ask questions before you go in for the hard pitch.
It’s hard because we all have a number to hit. “I want to tell you my story because my catheter is a good doctor. It does all these things. It’s the greatest thing in the world.” Slow down and ask me questions. I’m sure we all learned the needs assessment in the sales training school and then we forget the needs assessment because we get in front of him or her and we got them like, “I want to sell you my catheter.”
The 2 ears and 1 mouth saying or however you want to say it is asking more questions and listening more. It’s sales 101. I’m shocked at how many people miss that. Being humble and listening more to something that I would tell Marc from many years ago, I would have been a much better rep and done that. You may not be born with EQ but you can certainly improve those characteristics of self-awareness while you have motivation because you’re there being a rep. Empathy and self-awareness are two key things that sometimes get left behind.Motivation is never enough. Empathy and self-awareness are two key things that sometimes get left behind. Click To Tweet
For someone that’s reading this saying, “I want to internalize what he’s saying here. I’m going to take it to heart,” what do you advise them to go out and physically do to help them on this path to more self-awareness and better EQ in their accounts?
I would say two things. For those looking to get into the business and still trying to get the next job, if you can shadow the super successful rep who’s either at your current company or find a way to get with that rep at Medtronic or your dream company, go spend a day with him or her. I would push to do that. That’s something you can be a little pushy and aggressive do. That shows the right thing.
What does everybody like to do? We all like to talk about ourselves. Shadow that super successful rep and interrogate them, “How do you do this? What about this? How can I be better,” and watch them work. If you can wiggle your way into the opportunity to sit in the car with the number one rep at whatever company, that’s super cool.
This one’s a little trickier. If your target physician audience is general practitioners and you can get in to spend half a day shadowing them, listening to their needs and their struggles, you’ll get a better perspective than hammering them with like, “Here’s my new pharma and pill.” Learning from people, closing your mouth and listening, maybe you’ll be able to learn a lot from the successful rep from the customer if you can get in front of the customer.
What about leadership? I love how you gave us an example of you were talking to a leader and you have to tell a leader to stop talking. Outside of also telling leaders they need to listen more, what advice would you give from this side of things to medical sales leaders? The ABPs are trying to get into the C-Suite. The C-Suites are trying to brand themselves. What would you tell them to be mindful of from your perspective?
There’s one thing I didn’t do a good job of and later in life, I’m doing a better job of both being a mentor and a mentee. I read a great book a few years ago called The 40:40 Principle written by a guy called Andy Christiansen and it is that we should all have a mentor who’s over the age of 40 and under the age of 40 no matter where we are. Think about it. The younger person under 40 is going to have typically a better grasp of technology, social media and the wants, needs and desires of people in that age group.
The person over 40, probably not as technically savvy, knows more wisdom and if his or her demographic is better. I late in life figured that out. I have a mentor who’s 36 and who’s 69. I make it intentional. The other thing I thought was, “I like that kind of respect.” That’s not a mentor. An intentional mentor, we’re going to meet once a month for coffee, “Put it on your calendar,” and talk about life.
There’s no magic. You don’t go to a mentor and learn to be a better EVP but it’s important mentorship. I’m the older one now so I become the mentor to some younger folks early in their career such as device people and people in my company. I have a thirteen-year-old mentee whom I got through a program called Mentoring Two Sides. I would submit that no matter how old you are, if you’re the EVP at Medtronic, this huge guy and you run a team of 400 people, you need a mentor and be intentional. That’s my tip.
I love your mentor under 40 and mentor over 40. I’ve never thought about it that way. How do you keep it all going? You’ve had a very dynamic career. You were a top sales rep. You killed it for a long time. You start all these seven startups, bouncing around and making things happen. You’re running this big organization. What do you do in your free time that allows you to be this able?
I’m a big faith guy. I’m active in my church. I always live by the mind body spirit. You and I talked about working out before. I’m doing sports and staying active. That challenges us no matter what our age. That’s the body. From the mind standpoint is being intellectually challenged. I’ve been a pretty good goal writer. I don’t think goals are less than written down. I’ve been pretty good through the years about writing down goals.
I write down to read ten books a year, short or long books but I try to read. I’ve got four books that I started on my bedstand but staying intellectually challenged. Earlier in my career, I was reading books on cardiopulmonary surgery and stenting. I’m sharpening my skills. For those readers that are looking to get into the OB, vascular or pharma space, pick up YouTube, watch videos, learn and read. That’s mind, body and then spirit. I’m a faith-based guy. I’m finding a higher calling and doing something for the greater good, like mentoring or getting involved in your local faith-based group, whether it’s a church or whatever.
Are you a family man?
I have two kids and have been married for many years to the same girl. I was 21 when I got married. I got a daughter in Scottsdale, Arizona and a son in Denver.
Marc, this has been amazing. You’ve given us all this wisdom. Is there anything else you’d like to share with the audience that’s breaking in or trying to break in into medical sales?
After I gave my pitch of what I’ve done, so what? I was the greatest guy ever, so what? You need to do what you want to do. If anybody listens to Gary Vaynerchuk who’s an influencer and social media guy, he is always profane. I won’t quote him but do what you want to do. If your parents, boss or friends say, “You got to get into medical devices. You should be a nurse at a hospital,” do what you have to do and what you want to do. Med devices can give you a great career financially and work-life balance but it’s got to be what you want, not what somebody else’s wants. If I give any bit of advice or any pitch, it’s you’d be you and do what you want to do.
We’re going to wrap it up here but we’re going to have some questions for you. You got less than ten seconds to answer all of these. I’m not going to preempt you. I’m going to ask you and here we go. The best book you read.
The Mouse And The Motorcycle by Beverly Cleary. It’s a kid’s book. I’m reading it with my son. He is thirteen years old. I’m trying him to read a book. I read it when I was in seventh grade.
I’m a big cook. I made a great New York strip with asparagus. That’s as good as it gets for the big cat.
You’re speaking to someone who’s not a chef. What is New York strip? Is that steak or something else?
It’s a steak called New York strip.
The last question, what is your best experience?
I bought a boat and lived on it in Lake Michigan with my wife for 90 days. It was amazing. I saw the Northern Lights. Go to Lake Michigan and watch the Northern Lights. It is pretty spectacular.
Marc, it’s been real. I loved having this conversation with you. We can’t wait to see more things that you do out there in the med space world. We’ll be keeping track of you.
Thank you, Samuel.
I don’t think I can say it much better than the way he said it. Regardless of what anybody suggests, recommends or tells you to do, you have to do what you want to do. One thing that I probably get more of than anything when it comes to helping professionals get into medical sales, whether that be pharma, med device, biotech or testing are people that don’t know where they should be.
I talked to a lot of people who want to be in healthcare sales. They want to dedicate their lives to healthcare sales but they have no idea if they should be in pharmaceutical sales, medical device sales or even within those two arenas, should they be going for something along the lines of women’s health, neurology or should they be examining something like spine or stents, cardiovascular? I get that a lot.
When I dig a little deeper and I have a real conversation, I start to hear people spit out what someone has told them. If you’re learning where you should be, you’re going to listen to what people tell you but they forget to think about what they want. One of the things that I’ll say is the lifestyle you desire should be in strong alignment with the professional path you choose. If you want a certain type of medical device or pharmaceutical sales role, it should be aligned with the lifestyle you desire.
When you’re talking to all the different people about where you should be or what you should be considering, you have to make sure you have communicated your lifestyle because unfortunately, there are times when people jump into something and it wasn’t what they wanted to do, then they spent a company’s dime and a lot of their time. In some cases, they spent their dime. They’re not where they want to be. They have to take it back to the drawing board. I’ll jump off that soapbox. That’s something that he talks about a little bit right here in this episode and I couldn’t bring it home that much further.
If you’re out there thinking to yourself, “I don’t know where I want to be,” but you know you want to be in health care or medical sales, then go to EvolveYourSuccess.com, select Attain a Medical Sales Role, schedule a conversation and at the very least, let’s talk about where you should be considering based on the lifestyle you desire.
Thank you for reading. We do our best to bring you guests that are bringing innovation and a new way of doing things to the medical sales world. We’re doing our best to educate you on all the different types of medical sales there are. Remember, medical sales encompass all sales within healthcare. There are so many things going on that you can align yourself with if you desire to be a sales rep, consultant or clinical specialist. There’s an opportunity for you. Keep reading and make sure you tune in for another episode.
- Marc Toth
- The 40:40 Principle
- The Mouse And The Motorcycle
- Attain a Medical Sales Role
- Atlas Healthcare Partners
About Marc Toth
As the market president of cardiovascular services Marc currently leads a team of tenured professionals who understand the nuances of developing a manager of the day-to-day business and clinical operations of Cardiovascular ambulatory surgery centers. Marc has been a leader in the cardiovascular space for 25 years including leadership roles in device start ups, and as an M&A advisor representing physician seeking capital strategic partners for out patient centers. Marc Cofounded ACA cardiovascular development company solely focused on turnkey development and management Hybrid cardiovascular centers OBL/ASC.
Marc is a frequent contributor to Cath lab digest, cardiovascular inventions today and Becker’s AC review. He routinely speaks at national cardiovascular meetings on cardiovascular outmigration trends. He is an active member of ASCA’s government affairs board bringing Cardiovascular expertise to the lobbying efforts and adding additional Cardiovascular CPT codes to Medicare’s covered procedure list for surgery centers. Marc received his bachelor of business administration at University of Michigan’s Ross school of business and is a certified mergers and acquisitions advisor.
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