Interview with Mr Curtis

Mr Tim Curtis (Medtronic)

I did a bachelor’s degree in Science majoring in Medical & Molecular Bioscience. I wanted to find a career that included science and medicine as well as business.

My role is a territory manager at Medtronic. This is essentially a sales role, but it also incorporates educations, product development and product support for clinicians. On a day to day basis, my role is to be inside Hospitals across NSW, discuss the products which I look after and how the benefit the patient, explain how they work and why they work. I also provide support for surgeons and anaesthetics staff during procedures like shoulder reconstructions, cardiac surgery, neurosurgery and general surgery.  

For a role like this, being able to communicate with people is the number one skill you need to have. That doesn’t mean you need to be extraverted or really confident, it means that you have to be able to get your point across in a way that people can understand and adjust the way you speak depending on who you are talking to. I have discussions with Biomedical Engineers, Nurses, surgeons, Dr’s and Hospital executives. They all have different levels of knowledge around Medical devices, a conversation I have with a Biomedical engineer about my products is very different to the way I discuss it with nurses and hospital executives.

I think what sets the biotechnology industry apart from a lot of other industries is the constant evolution of technology. Everything is being made more advanced or more accurate every year, which makes it such a fast pace industry. It is really easy to fall behind if your technology is not evolving. There is so much money spent on R&D each year to make sure that companies are on the forefront of technology and medical solutions. I think the best part about this industry is that there will always be a need to biotechnology.

Don’t limit yourself to one career path. This industry / degree can take you in so many different directions, it’s a good idea to do some research beforehand, talk to people in the industry first and learn about their role (like what you are doing now) and make sure you understand what they like and don’t like about the job. Give a lot of things a go as well, you will surprise yourself what you like and don’t like – I NEVER pictured myself in a sales role but I love it find it very fulfilling.