Competitor attack is increasing in the pharmaceutical industry in Nigeria. This is getting very dirty in Lagos where pharmacy owners are now playing all forms of dirty tricks to knock out their competitors.
So, I want to warn pharmacists how to prepare for these competitor attack because they would come from areas you never expected. For instance I never believed that a new pharmacy can be sited less than 100 metres from an existing one. But I just saw this happen in Lagos. And its the older pharmacy duly registered one that is even put on the defensive.
Here are my recommendations
1 – Get involved in the politics of your industry. You need to attend key meetings or at least send a representatives. Its usually those who do not attend meetings that are sacrificed by those that attend. I have been at meetings where some needed to be put in a difficult spot. Usually, its those that where absent that were selected
2 – Be loud and vocal or create the perception that you are not afraid of playing dirty. A patent medicine dealer shop was at one time in Lagos visited by inspectors to be shut because a new premise was about to be registered in that area. That night, the owner of the patent shop went with a group of thugs to visit the owner of the new premises. That ended the story. Ironically, the patent medicine shop was actually really to co-exist with the new pharmacy until the new pharmacist felt threatened by the patent medicine man. When you run away at the slightest provocation, expect a lot of competitor attack because people with small power will want to ride over you.
3. Have access to someone in authority or an influencer – Just like any industry, there are cabals running shows in the pharmaceutical industry in Nigeria. I personally have had some run ins with them. You need to have someone in a position of authority that you can readily go to when your business comes under violent competitor attack. For instance, have access to at least the registrar or the PSN president.
4 – Have a good lawyer. This is one area that most young pharmacists miss it. Because they have been warned not to take their cases to court, they usually wallow in problems poured on them by those who think they have connections. I will strongly advise all pharmacy business owners especially those owned by non pharmacists to get a lawyer. I am usually disgusted by how non pharmacist owners of wholesale pharmacies are taken advantage of in the practice even when they are on the right side of the law. It is just a matter of time and chance that made some people read pharmacy and other not to. So, because someone read pharmacy does not give him or her the right to ride over you when you are doing everything right. Don’t get angry and complain rather get angry and get a lawyer.
5- Become social media savvy- If someone plays dirty with you, broadcast it far and wide on social media and I promise you that person will back away. LEARN HOW HERE
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