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employee stories

Life as Head of Training

Kelly | Head of Training | Pennsylvania, US | 10/20/2023

Kelly, based in Pennsylvania, US, acts as Head of Training within our Consulting capability. Here, she discusses the evolution of her career and how her love of learning has helped her build connections across the organization and create meaningful experiences for clients.

What prompted you to pursue a career in Learning and Development?

One thing that has always defined me, both personally and professionally, is my love of learning. When I began my career in Life Sciences as a Pharmaceutical Sales Representative 20 years ago, I went through an intensive new hire training program. I had such admiration for the training team that could turn a recent college graduate with no sales experience into a professional sales rep capable of holding meaningful clinical conversations with other healthcare professionals.

Choosing to focus on mentoring other sales professionals, I began working as a National Product Trainer, which was incredibly rewarding and confirmed that my career path was always meant to be in learning and development. Now in my current role, I’m privileged to lead a team of phenomenal learning professionals who help our clients create meaningful training deliverables to reach their goals.

What do you find most rewarding about your work?

My team is the best part of my job! I often say I think we’ve caught lightning in a bottle. Their talent, passion for learning, and commitment to our clients are among the best in the business—it’s a privilege to lead such an amazing group of people. I believe our success lies in the quality of the deliverables we create, and the quality of the team that creates them.

How have you developed your skill set since becoming Head of Training?

In my previous roles as a Sales Specialist and National Product Trainer, I gained a deep understanding of the pharmaceutical industry from our customers and the learners who used our training solutions. I often reflect on these past experiences to help my current team compile important considerations that ultimately lead to better learning solutions. In my current role, I’m fortunate to collaborate with so many talented leaders across the organization, which has also helped me develop my own leadership skills. Fostering these connections across the organization is the key to my success—and it’s what makes Avalere Health so special.

What are the key highlights of your week at Avalere Health?

On any given day, my team might be developing a launch curriculum for a new product in the rare disease space, creating training workshops, or working on a series of eLearning modules for an oncology franchise. Our clients’ training needs, business objectives, and project timelines are always evolving, so my team and I need to stay agile to meet and even exceed their expectations. One thing I love about my work is that no two weeks are ever the same!

Do you have any advice for future applicants?

“Be yourself and be curious!” Natural curiosity is often accompanied by a passion for learning and development, which goes hand in hand with having a passion for one’s own personal development. As humans, we’re always learning, so I take great professional satisfaction in creating meaningful learning experiences for my clients.

What do you enjoy doing outside of working hours?

My two wonderful daughters keep me busy outside of work. You will find me on the sidelines of all kinds of sports events, such as volleyball, basketball, softball, and swimming, cheering my girls on. I’m also working on my master’s degree in Instructional Design and Learning Technologies. With just two more classes to go, I can finally see the finish line!

Which company value do you resonate most with, and why?

“We are authentic.” A work environment where everyone can be their true, authentic selves fosters creativity and teamwork and creates meaningful connections. Clients often comment on our team dynamic. That synergy is borne out of a mutual respect and celebration of our authentic selves. Knowing who we are as individuals fuels what we can accomplish as a team.

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