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Vivek Shah Product Manager at BD

Vivek Shah

Product Manager
Franklin Lakes

We are the connectors of possible: From Engineering to Product Marketing

With his master’s degree in biomedical engineering from Syracuse University and experience from a summer internship with the BD Singapore office, Vivek Shah knew the Med Tech field was for him.

Now, a decade later, after having spent time in manufacturing, and packaging and design as a Quality Engineer, Vivek has found his true passion at BD: Product Marketing.

“Over the years, I became more curious about how decisions were being made further upstream that affected the products and projects I supported as an engineer. So, I started networking internally to learn more about it and seek stretch assignments. These stretch assignments gave me exposure and allowed me to build competencies required for a business role and eventually led to my first role in Marketing. I currently serve as the Marketing Product Manager in the Specimen Management Business, responsible for the BD Vacutainer® Tubes portfolio for the US region,” explained Vivek.

Defining his career aspiration through a series of lateral moves

Vivek noted that transitioning within BD and attaining promotions internally, compared to pursuing opportunities externally has been more beneficial to his career, hands down. Given BD’s vast portfolio, there are continually new career opportunities and products to explore, without the need to leave the company.

“Whenever you change employers, there is a fair chance that it won’t work out. Growing internally enables career advancement, fosters familiarity with company’s culture, and allows for the utilization of established networks and relationships.  Being within BD, it’s allowed me to learn and grow and see so many other career options that this company could offer me. I’ve always thought why take the chance and leave BD if they offer career movement here?” noted Vivek.

A significant contributor to finding his current role as a Product Marketer for Specimen Management arose from his attendance at a BD Associate Resource Group (ARG) meeting, which helped Vivek expand his work network further.

One of those networking connections led to building a relationship with someone in Marketing. “I met Louise An, who is the Associate Director of Marketing for the ChloraPrepTM Skin Prep portfolio, and she helped educate me on what marketing really entailed,” said Vivek.

Stretch assignments support career growth

To support his interest and desire to learn more about marketing, Vivek engaged in a series of stretch assignments to build his marketing competencies. Notably, he helped to manage the ChloraPrepTM Skin Prep portfolio during an employee’s absence. He also acquired experience in marketing communications and health economics outcomes research, gaining insights into product brand presence and cost-benefit analysis.

“I recall being accepted into Rutger’s (University) Part-Time MBA program last fall, but when a stretch assignment arose, I felt pursuing my MBA could wait. I saw the stretch assignment as an opportunity to gain real-world exposure that would ultimately benefit my MBA studies in the future,” explained Vivek. “My manager at the time was incredibly supportive of me taking on the additional duties for four months, which I truly appreciated.”

By the time the four months were over, Vivek vividly recalls that he knew his next career move would be into Product Marketing. “I applied for several roles at BD. It was great to have people advocating for me, but the recruiting process was also rigorous. I knew I had to earn the offer, which was exciting.”

Reflecting on internal movement at BD

As he is now several months into his new role, Vivek emphasizes that if you are seeking a new role in your career, look internally first. And don’t be afraid to ask your mentors, leaders, and others whom you have built relationships with to advocate for you along the way.

“Part of the beauty of applying for positions within BD was the commitment of hiring managers to provide feedback, even for the roles I wasn’t ultimately offered. Hearing about areas for improvement or what qualities they sought in candidates was incredibly valuable,” noted Vivek. “The experience taught me the significance of proactively steering my career and cultivating resilience. It’s essential not to be discouraged by initial setbacks when applying for internal roles; persistence is key. Stay motivated and maintain perspective,” emphasized Vivek.

In his personal time, Vivek loves reading about finance, economics, and studying the equity market. You might also find him cooking a curry, as he enjoys whipping up Indian cuisine and likes to choose a different dish representing the various parts of the country.

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