Beyond the Pitch: I appreicate nice reps.

silhouetteI have had two very nice meetings with pump reps in the valley over the past two weeks. I meet reps all the time. They wouldn’t be in sales if they couldn’t flash a nice smile and pitch a product. However, I enjoy it when I get to really sit down with one and get a little glimpse at the true person behind the pitch. I appreciate them taking the time to understand my personal concerns with the products on the market as a type one diabetic. I also appreciate them taking the time to educate me about all new aspects of each product or system in order to pass that information on to my T1 or T2 clients and other diabetics that are looking for different strategies in diabetes management.

I appreciate the attentiveness, thoroughness, and knowledge of those with whom I had the opportunity to meet. I got to see all the latest and greatest information from both Medtronic and Tandem. I truly can appreciate all of the differences and similarities in their product lines. I have appreciated different aspects of various pumps, meters, and insulin regimens, in different phases of my life. I honestly believe that there is not a one size fits all treatment to the life of diabetes. I would have loved to have the waterproof OmniPod during the years of living in the pools of Arizona with my young child; instead of having to exit the pool and “hook up” and wait for a while to re-enter the water. (A huge thank you to Dino Pierce from OmniPod). Although I did not meet with him this week, I always appreciate his incredible spirit to better the lives of those living with diabetes!) During other phases of life I have loved having the tubed pump that I can simply clip onto clothing. I am by no means afraid to show my pump. There are times however, that I would like to attend an event and have my pump hidden behind a dress vs. brandishing it on my bicep for the cocktail party to view. My Medtronic tube has somehow lurched onto various objects as I walk by, causing a slight bit of pain or more likely the rip of adhesive. Door knobs, the dishwasher latch, or even the seatbelt have been some of my worst enemies. This is common with all tubed pumps, but I currently prefer this during this present phase of life. So again, I value all of the available pumps and their uses.

I left feeling inspired once again about the life of the average diabetic. I have renewed insight into all the bells and whistles that are offered that I many times forget to use. I love seeing the passion about a product that these reps were able to show. I love to hear about their longtime dedication to this life we lead. It is challenging and the more experts we have in our corner, the better. I used to feel guilty only being able to wear one pump at a time as I talked to the reps selling each device. I no longer feel that way. It might come with age, or confidence, or foolishness on my part. It is my body and my choice. It is not the first pump I have worn, nor will it be the last. I can try all of them if I like! I hope to convey my true desire for their knowledge to spread the word about their products, even if I want to try a new version out for a while.

The parting words I heard today make me proud of an industry of which I sometimes am truly jealous. I admit, I envy the salaries if quotas are met. The bonus offers are seductive. I would like a car allowance. I envy the flexibility. I cringe at how much I know these reps make off of my need for their products. I can’t blame them. It is not their call. They were smart to enter a lucrative field. I can quietly seethe at the manufacturers and free market that allows these prices, but that is for another day. I have personally known several reps, that seemed to be more dedicated to the paycheck and the lifestyle it provides vs. the betterment of our lives with diabetes. These past two weeks however, I felt my faith in the industry rise. The parting words that were given to me and forgive me if I do not quote verbatim, but you get the drift, “I appreciate competition in our field. It is what drives us toward innovation and progress.”

I say a huge thank you to the dedicated reps that took more than the usual amount of time to discuss all the parts of their products, knowing that I would not be able to purchase all of them at once. I appreciate the thorough follow through and the laughs we had. I look forward to many more meetings as the industry progresses and we both can help our clients find the best fit for their life with diabetes!

All The Best,

The Diabetes Coach

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