We are the makers of possible: From Application Specialist to Sales Manager
Silvana Compasso, Regional Sales Manager for BD Biosciences based in Milan, Italy, says one of the most significant differentiators for BD is the collective focus on responsibility.
“I believe that the company’s strong sense of responsibility and doing the right thing is what makes BD such a valued partner and employer. It’s what guides me every day to help go above-and-beyond to provide the best support possible to the customers I serve, my direct team, and my colleagues,” Silvana shared.
Experience in Academia and Private Hospitals Paved the Way for Current Role
Armed with a degree in biology, as well as a PhD in Immunology from the University of Milan, Silvana started her career at BD as an Application Specialist in 2004. In this role, she oversaw customer support, training, and education. She quickly learned that joining BD was the right move for her.
“Joining BD gave me the opportunity to leverage my education and experiences in a new setting that actually helps me continue to learn and grow – nearly every day. And from the beginning, I’ve felt welcome at the company – nearly 20 years later I still feel like I belong here and that my skills and experience are valued. BD is such an inclusive organization,” she explained.
After a year as an Application Specialist, Silvana was promoted to a role where she had the opportunity to coordinate the Application Specialists. Then she was promoted again to Regional Sales Manager, which gave her the opportunity to develop a new set of skills including people management, customer relations, and tender (i.e., business request for proposals) management.
Since moving to her current role, Silvana and the team in Italy implemented a new model of work where the Application Specialists partner closely with the Sales team during the pre-sales process. Their technical knowledge adds great value from a customer perspective. This model has been well received and recognized externally and Silvana knows there are other teams internally considering implementing the same approach.
“As I look back on my career before BD, it feels like my research and clinical background were preparing me for the role I have today in some ways….I am much better positioned to understand customer needs, and it is rewarding that customers see the value in my expertise,” Silvana said.
Is there an average day or week for Silvana?
Silvana shared what a week in the life of a Sales Manager looks like, and it includes such activities as daily sales monitoring, weekly check-ins with her team to organize priorities and plan future projects, customer visits, supervising tender materials, and continuing to support her sales team and her customers.