Darren & Associates
 

The new millennium finds the life sciences industry facing a host of new challenges:

Unprecedented merger and alliance activity in the supply (pharmaceutical, biotechnology, medical supplies/devices) and healthcare delivery sectors

New paradigms in the R&D arena where breakthroughs in drug discovery and the use of information technologies impact on traditional organizations

Trends in marketing, consumer advertising and population health management require constant replenishment of new product pipelines to retain a competitive edge

Changes in healthcare financing coupled with an aging population and new healthcare consumerism require increasing productivity, cost efficiencies and flexibility by healthcare suppliers, payers and providers alike

E-health is a new and exciting trend with dramatic implications across all sectors of the industry

In the competition for talent, Darren & Associates' global Life Sciences and Health Care Services Practice is uniquely qualified to advise on leadership issues, and identify and recruit the exceptional senior executives and board members required to meet these challenges. Each of our consultants brings years of industry experience and knowledge of the particular issues facing our clients in each life sciences/healthcare sector. Beyond their expertise as leaders in the search industry, they are recognized as valuable allies and strategic partners of top organizations worldwide.

Life Sciences and Health Care Services Practice members conduct approximately 200 assignments annually for some of the most respected names in the following industry sectors:

Pharmaceuticals

Biotech

Generics

Medical Devices

Diagnostics

Healthcare Services

Healthcare Information

Consumer Health


The pharmaceutical industry is undergoing unprecedented change. The advent of mega-mergers is altering its dynamics and a new landscape is emerging. As the product pipelines dry up, competition to develop and market products that satisfy unmet medical needs is stronger than ever. Go-to-market models, types of drugs being approved, even organizations themselves — all are being impacted. Pharmaceutical companies are faced with new challenges from regulatory agencies imposing tougher requirements for market approvals, governments in major markets are taking a tough stance on reimbursement and pricing, and generic companies are rigorously and creatively challenging patents.

This highly competitive and complex business environment necessitates a leadership model that promotes innovation, productivity, and cost efficiency, yet thrives in a large, complex organization. Working under adverse circumstances, leaders at all levels will be faced with managing, integrating, and motivating culturally diverse organizations while achieving results.

To master these challenges, leaders must establish high-performance cultures that balance innovation with financial growth. Maintaining key operational indicators and promoting sound decisions in all functional or business areas within an organization will be critical to its future success.

We engage with our pharmaceutical clients through the following service offerings:

Expert Network and External Benchmarking

Executive Search

Executive Coaching

Board Search and Reviews

Our experience in helping companies recognize, grow, and promote internal talent is unmatched. Our Expert Network and External Benchmarking are a hallmark of our service model and focus on assisting our clients to develop the most appropriate and effective skills for their current employees and teams. When recruiting external talent becomes necessary, we identify solutions through our industry-leading methodologies in executive search, executive Expert Networks, and board appointments. We also have a unique capability regarding the integration of companies pre- and post-acquisition or merger: we are able to identify the talent best suited to lead within the combined organization, to catalyze the new team to work together, and to protect essential corporate investments.

We work across the talent management continuum to provide insights to our clients through identifying and defining the necessary competency models for talent, developing capability in individuals and teams, and planning and recruiting for succession. Our consultants were all experienced business leaders before embarking on a career with our firm, and can therefore appreciate each client's business problems and can ascertain how to

reach the best solutions. Moreover, since our clients are headquartered throughout the world, our work is not confined to any geography: we operate without boundaries between our offices and are ideally positioned to handle large, complex national and international assignments that require the deployment of resources across multiple geographies.

Biotechnology is seen as the great hope for producing effective new medicines. As the investigation of disease pathways and biomarkers becomes increasingly more important to the drug development process, pharmaceutical companies are targeting biotechs for acquisitions or partnerships more aggressively than ever before. In this environment, biotech companies need not only continue to innovate, develop, and commercialize, but also to determine their future in new ways.

Whether going it alone, partnering, or merging with a larger pharmaceutical company, biotechs have discovered a new importance in competencies that were previously less significant. While the ability to lead discovery and development has always been the elusive backbone of strong biotech companies, the underlying science is now even more critical.

To master these challenges, leaders must learn to manage an increasingly diverse set of scientific disciplines coupled with a complex mosaic of pharmaceutical industry partnerships. Executive capabilities for team leadership and collaboration are in great demand and in short supply.

We engage with our biotechnology clients through the following service offerings:

Expert Network and External Benchmarking

Executive Search

Executive Coaching

Board Search and Reviews

Our biotech and therapeutics expertise is largely unequaled. We have successfully brought creative external recruiting solutions to our clients, identifying the right candidate through our industry-leading methodologies in executive search, executive Expert Networks, and board appointments. We also have experience in helping companies recognize, grow, and promote their own internal talent. Our Expert Network and External Benchmarking are a hallmark of our service model and focus not on search but on assisting our clients to develop the most appropriate and effective skills for their current employees and teams. In addition, we have a unique capability regarding the integration of companies pre- and post-acquisition or merger: we are able to identify the talent best suited to lead within the combined organization, to catalyze the new team to work together effectively, and to protect essential corporate investments.

We work across the talent management continuum to provide insights to our clients through identifying and defining the necessary competency models for talent, developing capability in individuals and teams, and planning and recruiting for succession. Our consultants were all experienced business leaders before embarking on a career with our firm, and can therefore appreciate each client's business problems and can ascertain how to reach the best solutions. Moreover, since our clients are headquartered throughout the world, our work is not confined to any geography: we operate without boundaries between our offices.

Recession in the global economy creates unprecedented pressure on cost efficiency. Generic pharmaceutical companies are naturally positioned to strengthen their position in difficult times. The shrinking portfolio of patented drugs, increasing cost pressure from regulatory agencies and the appearance of loosening patent claims lead to an entirely new market environment and create new opportunities for generics.

Key players in the generics industry are increasingly expanding their geographical presence and increasing advantages of economy of scale in product development, supply chain and commercial activities – becoming truly global players with all the complexity of multinational organizations.

The nature of the industry, with largely commoditized products, the intrinsic difficulty of building a distinguished brand, the increasing consolidation, globalization, and growing complexity, makes new demands on management capabilities. Generics companies must not only find executives able to manage a global business, but at the same time maintain the entrepreneurial culture on which their competitive advantage depends.

New talent and new capabilities will be required in three critical areas:

Operations: With increasing globalization, economies of scale will be critical, in particular in manufacturing and raw materials sourcing in an environment that is already seeing shortages

Strategic marketing: In global markets with varying characteristics, the ability to develop and manage different models will be essential

Talent management: With a largely commoditized product, the ability to attract and manage top talent will be decisive in gaining competitive advantage.

Best-in-class talent management will become the key element of differentiation and further growth for generics companies in the years ahead. The big winners will be those companies that are able not only to attract top talent, but also to ensure that they thoroughly implement talent management disciplines. They will develop competencies not just for today but for future needs, proactively manage succession, develop appropriate retention and career planning programs, and constantly benchmark management versus the market.

Darren & Associates' global Generics Practice supports clients in all aspects of talent management – including executive search, appraisal, industry benchmarking, team Expert Network, development and pre and post-acquisition integration.

Darren & Associates partners with organizations to raise their level of talent. We work across the talent management continuum to provide search, Expert Network and development services. Our consultants were all experienced business leaders before entering our firm and can therefore understand your business problem when developing a talent solution for you.

Our Expert Network and Executive Coaching Service offers proven expertise in systematically evaluating and benchmarking companies' existing management portfolio at both individual and team levels. This strategic approach to creating top-class management teams can only be realized with the backing of a company's CEO and more particularly its board. Both need experience of leading their companies through turbulent times.

Both the in-vivo and in-vitro markets have unprecedented opportunities and challenges. These opportunities include personalized medicine with its need for ever more specific diagnostics, the increasing sophistication of diagnostics, and regulatory pressure. The competitive landscape is also becoming more complex.

Diagnostic imaging companies have their own challenges. With major new purchases made more challenging by the situation on the credit markets, purchasers are also concerned with the potential decrease in reimbursement. However, the need for diagnostic imaging at lower prices not only creates an opportunity in established markets, but also re-emphasizes the opportunity in creating products for emerging markets. Perhaps even more importantly, the ability to diagnose and treat effectively has never been stronger in a variety of clinical areas.

These challenges create a need for thorough clinical understanding, advanced R&D capability, collaboration and strategic marketing. For diagnostic imaging, the ability to understand how to create sustainable market share is also important.

To master these challenges a combination of strong strategic marketing, regulatory capabilities and innovative R&D will be essential. Leading cross-functional teams, managing a portfolio of (analogous) products, and making the trade-offs of long and short-term investment and product launches are all key aspects of success.

We have placed a large number of executives in diagnostics companies. Our clients include the well-known market leaders as well as the innovative potential future leaders.
We understand the issues from competition, market, value-chain and geographical perspectives.

Our ability to source and recruit talent from the relevant areas around the globe sets us apart in serving our clients. In several instances we have found the answer outside the usual target market. Our ability to work across industries and markets provides innovative talent solutions for our clients.

Additionally, we are focused not only on recruiting external talent but also on assisting our clients to develop the appropriate skills in the most effective manner for their current employees and teams. These Leadership Strategy Services are a hallmark of our service model.

At 17 percent of the gross domestic product and growing, the healthcare industry represents a vast network of interconnected entities that deliver care, and process the finances, transactions and decisions associated with that care. Care is delivered across a wide array of locations hospitals, ancillary centers, ambulatory settings and in the home. Payment sources range from government through Medicare, Medicaid and the federal and military health programs, to employers through self-insured and insured products, and patients themselves. Traditional healthcare is further supplemented by a vast and growing alternative medicine and wellness/nutritionals sector.

Healthcare payments are handled through intermediaries who include health insurers, benefits administrators and consumer health providers across the medical, mental-health and pharmacy spectrum. The care itself is delivered by skilled clinicians, including physicians, nurses and a wide spectrum of ancillary care-givers – most of who are organized into small businesses that operate within the institutions listed above. The spectrum of providers who operate within this complex eco-system is vast and includes, but is not limited to:

Health insurers and benefit administrators

Pharmacy benefit managers and administrators

Retail entities involved with the delivery of mobile, urgent and ambulatory care

Alternative medicine providers and the nutritionals sector

Hospitals and in-home care-givers

Healthcare information technology providers and infomediaries

Consultants who advise stakeholders across the spectrum

Health 2.0 players who provide knowledge forums, social networks and advisory forums online

Health and wellness players, disease managers and others seeking to predict, prevent and manage chronic disease

Financial entities involved in the financing of healthcare, including asset players, benefits administrators and public and private investors.

The US health industry is certain to grow, rather than shrink, for decades to come – fueled by increasing demand for services against the backdrop of shrinking resources allocated to care. This pressure to reduce units of consumption and the cost of every unit of care is contributing to catastrophic conditions within each sub-sector listed above – causing a further imbalance between the demand for resources and their supply, between the costs of units consumed and the price the market is willing to pay for them.

For decades, this imbalance has been held at bay by growing investments of resources from all stakeholders – the government, private employers and private citizens. As employers and citizens reel under the burden, the government is stepping in to an even greater degree – leading to a downward pressure on unit prices unprecedented in recent times. Within the hospital sector, this shrinkage of operating profits comes alongside a serious shortage of capital. Within the caregiver segment, shortages of skilled labor are being exacerbated by cuts in teaching programs, reimbursement and aid. Within the insurance segment, micro-avoidance of risk has created a whole industry of care-rationing entities, all of whose actions create new cycles of care denial, lawsuits and scrutiny that further compromise quality and fuel the practice of defensive medicine.

As the stakeholders pit themselves against each other to grasp a disproportionate share of the pie, what the industry really needs are leaders who can lead through collaboration and influence; who can bring technology and operational excellence to bear on doing more with less; who can create functioning eco-systems within the chaotic backdrop of an industry where each patient is unique and true standardization is elusive.

The functional skills needed within health services are the same as in many other health sectors – financial expertise, regulatory knowledge, technology skills, care-giving expertise and customer service skills. However, sector experience is often a critical adjunct, given the highly regulated and complex mosaic of processes unique to the industry. Our ability to identify leaders who have years of “in the box” experience but can bring an “out of the box” mindset to bear on this industry will be an important differentiator. As Capitol Hill becomes an increasing player in many other industries, those sectors are going to draw on health talent with expertise in working “the Hill” – resulting in a net outflow of talent from healthcare and further exacerbating the demand for talented executives in this sector. Our ability to maintain strong, resilient and current networks in each industry sub-sector ensures we can recruit high quality executives for our clients in a timely manner.

In this business environment, best-practice companies ensure that the essential competencies are both present and being developed in their management teams. Darren & Associates' global Life Sciences Practice supports our clients' needs through specific industry expertise, as well as knowledge of, and access to top management talent in the market.

We proactively identify leaders and high-potential talent in the sub-sectors defined above, working with our clients to identify creative ways to build the teams required to achieve their strategic objectives.

We work across the talent management continuum to provide search, Expert Network and development services. Our consultants were all experienced business leaders before entering our firm and can therefore understand your business problem when developing a talent solution for you.

Our Expert Network and Executive Coaching Service offers proven expertise in systematically evaluating and benchmarking companies' existing management portfolio at both individual and team levels. This strategic approach to creating top-class management teams can only be realized with the backing of a company's CEO and more particularly its board. Both need experience of leading their companies through turbulent times.
Our entire firm operates as a single profit center, which both encourages and rewards collaboration.

There are well-documented issues in many developed countries' health care systems: spiraling healthcare costs, shortfalls in quality standards, questions about how to raise productivity, concerns about patient safety and high-level, societal questions about where to allocate finite resources. The development of information technology in the healthcare industry is viewed by many as a step in the right direction, toward a cure for ailing healthcare systems.

The transfer of paper-based information into electronic format and real-time information exchange, i.e. data communication between clinicians, pharmacies, payors and other key stakeholders, has the potential to transform the twenty-first century healthcare system. Adaptation of Electronic Health Records (EHRs), creation of online Personal Health Records (PHRs), and the ability to share health information safely in national health information networks are fundamental to the growth and development of interoperable healthcare information technology.

However, healthcare informatics encompasses a much larger industry than patient data and real-time access to patient information. The industry also encompasses home-health device monitoring, bioinformatics, imaging data management, public health reporting, radiofrequency identification (RFID), veterinary informatics, dental informatics, health management informatics (scheduling, regulatory compliance), etc. Additionally, healthcare informatics companies serve a diverse group of organizations, including providers, patients, payers, payors, regulators, consumers, clinical and laboratory researchers, industry (pharma, biotech, devices, diagnostics), vendors, and standards development organizations.

The diversity of healthcare informatics products and services, as well as among healthcare informatics customers, presents a challenge to the leaders within this rapidly developing industry.

To master the challenges in the healthcare informatics industry, the industry needs executives who can successfully lead companies through developing and transformative times. Integration, change management and innovation will be key competencies. There is also a strong need for visionary managers who create pioneering medium- or long-term strategy and who thrive in highly competitive market environments at a global level.

Functional skills such as cutting-edge engineering expertise, delivering high-quality products and services, identifying and exploiting synergies, while transforming and capturing leading positions in the market, will remain key requisites.

In this business environment, best-practice companies ensure that the essential competencies are both present and being developed in their management teams. Darren & Associates' Global Life Sciences Practice supports our clients' needs through specific industry expertise, as well as knowledge of, and access to top management talent in the market.

We proactively identify leaders and high-potential talent in the global market, with competencies in critical functions: commercial operations, R&D/product development and strategy, as well as general management.

We partner with organizations to raise their level of talent. We work across the talent management continuum to provide search, Expert Network and development services. Our consultants were all experienced business leaders before entering our firm and can therefore understand your business problem when developing a talent solution for you.

Our Expert Network and Executive Coaching Service offers proven expertise in systematically evaluating and benchmarking companies' existing management portfolio at both individual and team levels. This strategic approach to creating top-class management teams can only be realized with the backing of a company's CEO and more particularly its board. Both need experience of leading their companies through turbulent times.

Our entire firm operates as a single profit center, which both encourages and rewards collaboration.

There are several trends creating growth for the consumer health industry; consumers expect to control more of their healthcare, baby boomers are interested in staying fit and healthy as long as possible, and private equity and venture capital are flooding this sector in unprecedented amounts. These trends are affecting a wide array of products to improve health and wellness, including over-the-counter medicine, home diagnostics, dental, health and beauty and nutritional products.

Companies serving these sectors are as varied as the products the target segment desires. Whether a Fortune 500 company or an early-stage start-up, the challenges of serving this market are similar. The sector is well informed and researches the validity of claims, and viral marketing is essential. Players in this market have an opportunity to define consumer health for years to come.

While many companies are well suited to enter or expand their presence in this market, typically a company has only part of the necessary skills and core com

petencies. It is essential not only to be a strong consumer-driven organization, but also to understand how to obtain appropriate FDA approval. This combination of capabilities and the ability to manage them is still in its infancy in much of the industry.

To master these challenges a combination of strong strategic marketing, regulatory capabilities and innovative R&D will be essential. Leading cross-functional teams and managing a suite of associated products while making the trade-offs of long and short term investment and product launches will be essential for success.

We have placed a wide array of executives in consumer health companies, and have advised several market leaders on how to optimize their talent. We combine our expertise in consumer products, medical devices, pharmaceuticals and nutraceuticals to provide innovative talent solutions.

Additionally, we proactively identify, evaluate and track individuals with the unique set of skills needed for effective leadership in this new paradigm. We can then swiftly match appropriate talent with the specific needs of our client company.

We partner with organizations to raise their level of talent. We work across the talent management continuum to provide search, Expert Network and development services. Our consultants were all experienced business leaders before entering our firm and can therefore understand your business problem when developing a talent solution for you.

Our Expert Network and Executive Coaching service offers proven expertise in systematically evaluating and benchmarking companies' existing management portfolio at both individual and team levels. This strategic approach to creating top-class management teams can only be realized with the backing of a company's CEO and more particularly its board. Both need experience of leading their companies through turbulent times.