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Hard Sell: The Evolution of a Viagra Salesman Hardcover – March 1, 2005
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More About the Author
Harvard Business School invited me to speak in 2008. They have not asked me back.
5 Guys is the best burger chain in America; and, yes, that includes In-n-Out.
My mom says she had a constant barbecue potato chip craving when she was pregnant with me; to this day, BBQ chips are a major weakness of mine. It annoys me when people use, "to this day," in a sentence.
I've met Bono and Colonel Buzz Aldrin.
My dermatologist likes me this pale.
Top Customer Reviews
Reidy graduated from Notre Dame, with a degree in English, not pharmacology or even any other science. He did a spell in the military, and then he slacked.Read more ›
Jamie Reidy tells the inside story of how he became a drug company rep and all the ways he found out to cash a paycheck while doing as little as possible. If I hadn't already heard many of these creative ideas, shared by drug reps during past sales meetings, I wouldn't have thought this was for real.
But behind the humor this is a cautionary tale to policy makers and patients. "Hard Sell" is brutally honest about what really sells drugs. What sells, according to "Hard Sell," is sex. A couple of the most memorable lines in the book are "I witnessed men undergo complete personality makeovers in the presence of female salespeople," and "The women had the most basic human response on their side; regardless how behind schedule or how crazy the day, a male doctor would snap to attention at a mere whiff of perfume or a glance at a pretty girl, his instinctive desire to reproduce having kicked into gear."
In the end, anyone who has seen the good-looking pharmaceutical sales reps in any U.S. sales force has to ask if we want to have our drugs prescribed based on "male doctors' instinctive desire to reproduce" or based on science.
As a doctor myself, I'm afraid that science is taking more and more of a backseat today.
The book made interesting reading and I found myself quite intrigued, turning the pages to find out more about the inner workings of the pharma sales rep culture. As a woman, I can see where perhaps I should've taken this road rather than that of an educator, but then you know what they say about hindsight. Jamie makes it quite clear that women make the best reps because most doctors are males. It seems even the women doctors prefer female reps...sisterhood?
Anyway, read this book and you will look at your doctor's office differently in the future. I was a little disappointed at the end of the book because it ended quite suddenly. I was hoping for the gory details of Jamie's departure from Pfizer, but perhaps there were none (?) In the epilogue he mentions that he'd quit Pfizer "two months earlier," but there were no details. If you're a sports fan, you'll enjoy Jamie's frequent references to sports events and personalities. He writes with humor (I found myself LOL several times). All-in-all, a good read.
Carolyn Rowe Hill
Reidy provides interesting detail on the Pfizer recruiting process (they love Mormons and military officers); Pfizer's sales training program (pharmaceutical brainwashing); the tension and field tactics around being closely monitored by managers (voicemail then expense report receipts then sample sheet signatures); and, reasons why female reps do better than male reps (Gloria Steinem, where are you?).
Reidy joined Pfizer's newly formed pediatric/ENTs/ObGyn specialty sales force where he distinguished himself with mediocre sales and poor work activity. His lackluster performance put him in-line for a promotion, as the Pfizer culture encouraged the promotion of incompetence rather than dealing with it (Hank McKinnell, where are you?). Fortuitously for Reidy, he was "promoted" to a newly formed Urology sales force created to launch Viagra (erectile dysfunction), a drug launch which became the most successful in history.
The author notes that he came to view competition, Abbott and Lilly, as enemies of society because they lied and cheated. Meanwhile, he and some colleagues used "Sample Closets" as pharmaceutical filling stations when in need (as did office personnel and docs); falsified regulated sample sheet signatures when in need of time off; and rigged giveaways when seeking a new route to a doctor they wanted to build a relationship with.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
As a general rule, I completely detest Big Pharma and everything involved with it. I could not help but make an exception when I read Hard Sell: Evolution of A Viagra... Read morePublished 7 months ago by Jenni C.
Only about half the book was about the Viagra. He starts out schlepping drugs to Kids' Doctors. Then he decides he is tired of that grind and gets 'kicked upstairs', so to speak,... Read morePublished 11 months ago by Sage
This Book is a master piece...And should be a requirement for all persons considering any type of "SALES".. Read morePublished on September 6, 2013 by WO
Easy read and entertaining. Riedy's book doesn't accurately depict modern pharma as companies/regulations have drastically changed the behavior depicted in the book. Read morePublished on July 27, 2013 by Karl Hamilton
Great quality. Looks new. Enjoying the read and the book is nice and clean. Thank you for a quality product.Published on January 21, 2013 by Charlotte Cudd
Perhaps a lesson in how drug companies make too much money might be enlightening. Wasted. A society that develops drugs that sell before drugs that cure. Some humor. Read morePublished on August 12, 2012 by John Bowes
I have been meaning to watch "Love and Other Drugs" - the movie that this book inspired, especially after a recent sales meeting when a co-worked mentioned that all the fuss, hype... Read morePublished on May 3, 2011 by Reviews on Amazon
I would never hire Jamie (the author), unless it was to write smart-ass, witty-yet-informative prose. Read morePublished on May 3, 2011 by cantslowdown
After seeing the movie Love and Other drugs--just had to get the book. I found the book a little lengthy, but definetly had some laugh out loud parts as well as insider info on the... Read morePublished on March 23, 2011 by salesrep13