Editor’s note: In March 2019, Rob Faulkner was named global director for Cook Medical’s Urology specialty. He has been with Cook for 19+ years—previously serving in the Endoscopy specialty as a district sales manager, regional manager, North America sales manager, and, for the last five years, global sales director. He comes to the Urology team with an eagerness to share from his sales experience and his understanding of the global medical device industry.
The challenge of getting to know the Urology specialty excites me in this next chapter of my career. It’s the new, the unknown, that forces me to get out of bed every day, read a medical journal that I may never have read, and dive into this new world. It’s pushing me out of my comfort zone to learn things I don’t know that well. I’ve been with Cook for nearly two decades, all that time spent working in Endoscopy, and while I love that specialty and I’m passionate about it, the opportunity to learn something new: that’s really cool, too.
My outsider perspective brings a certain independence, and it’s from my experience and my tenure with Cook that I know working side-by-side with urologists will help the specialty evolve and, ultimately, thrive.
Experience is important, and while I don’t have any preconceived notions about the way the urology market should be today or the way it might look in five years, what I do possess is a drive and a forward-thinking outlook to champion Cook and continue our legacy of collaboration and innovation. My outsider perspective brings a certain independence, and it’s from my experience and my tenure with Cook that I know working side-by-side with urologists will help the specialty evolve and, ultimately, thrive.
I was certainly an outsider when I had my first interaction with Urology last September. Prior to even knowing I was going to be in this new role, I attended a urology tradeshow in Paris with DJ Sirota, vice president of Cook’s MedSurg division. I had a chance to talk to quite a few people about what they do in their practice and how they engage patients. Two things especially stood out to me. First, I noticed that urologists can be very laid back. And second, urologists are open to discussion. And the things that we talked about—stricture management, stone retrieval—illustrated to me just how similar urologists are to endoscopists in how they treat a patient. Even though they treat different parts of the body, they are amazingly similar, even down to the tools they use. We can use those parallels to our advantage as we explore cross-specialty opportunities. In all my years with Cook in Endoscopy, I’ve attained a keen knowledge of the consumables market with a global perspective, along with an in-depth understanding of the contracting world. That experience is vital as we start writing this next chapter.
It starts with cultivating an environment that fosters learning and opportunity, and for me, for us, that starts with cultivating a strong team and growing our relationships.
Obviously, I still have a lot to learn in terms of what the opportunities are in the various regions, but it starts with cultivating an environment that fosters learning and opportunity, and for me, for us, that starts with cultivating a strong team and growing our relationships. When I look around at the team I’m privileged enough to work with now, I see strong leadership in place in each of the areas that are important to the business. My goal is to make sure I foster that leadership, foster collaboration, and show our potential to move Cook forward and make Urology better as well.
In the few short months I’ve been in my new role, I’ve been impressed with what I’ve seen. Despite the challenges inherent in business, ours is a team with a fighting spirit, eager to seek out opportunity and eager to make a difference.
Needless to say, I’m looking forward to getting to know the specialty more, especially as I meet with more and more urologists in the coming weeks and months. I recently attended the AUA annual meeting in Chicago, where I met with individuals from around the world. It was a great time, and it was a productive time for me to share our goals and our vision for the future. I feel more connected. And I feel confident knowing there’s a lot of opportunity here, and I’m excited to see what lies ahead for us and for the specialty.