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John Pugh, Boehringer Ingelheim: Restrictions Force Us To Be Creative

John Pugh shared his first experiences with the Pharma industry, from which he learned two things: the formal atmosphere is intimidating and ACDC is good for your career

Nora Woloszczuk

To begin his speech, John Pugh shared his first experiences with the Pharma industry, from which he learned two things: the formal atmosphere is intimidating and ACDC is good for your career (his fan-dom landed him his first job in the field). Pugh gave his insight into the shortcomings and opportunities within the pharma industry at PSFK CONFERENCE LONDON. What he found was that the industry was bad at communicating, partially due to legal restrictions, and consumers weren’t happy. However, he quipped, “restriction forces us to create.”

It was this ideology that inspired Boehringer Ingelheim to not only become active on social media, but also to create a social, online game akin to Farmville. It’s called Syrum – players run their own pharmaceutical companies, curing diseases, making molecules into drugs and even collaborating with fellow players to head-hunt for new staff. How, though, is this supposed to help the industry? Pugh explained that not only is the game social and educational, it’s a great way to lighten the reputation surrounding pharma, perform market research and even problem solve.

Some highlights from the talk:

  • Restrictions force us to create – try to see barriers as opportunities.
  • Social media has the ability to change the nature of a corporation and the way in which it’s perceived.
Images: The Partners
Nora Woloszczuk
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