Pharmacy Leader Krysta Davies Foss: "My first job was as a pharmaceutical technician. I loved it."
By Pharmacy U
Current role: Founder and Managing Director, Triad Strategic Services
How has your career evolved since you first started in the profession?
My first job was as a pharmaceutical technician. I loved it. I loved helping our customers and patients, I loved the tight team I worked with. I loved learning about new treatments and compounding, and I even loved counting out tablets. I’ve had many different roles since that one, but my time as a pharmacy tech cemented my love of the healthcare industry and I have never strayed far.
I now head up a small consulting firm that is dedicated to helping pharma/biotech companies to be as competitive as possible. We do research on a therapeutic area and give feedback to ensure that our clients are doing the best they can for their patients and the market. So, I’m not counting tablets anymore, but I still work with a fabulous team, helping people, and I’m learning about new diseases and treatments all the time.
How important was mentoring in your career?
As we move through our careers, I think we all have a responsibility to mentor people to some degree. Having a conversation with someone with a different perspective and level of experience can open you up to thinking about things in a new way, and can also provide opportunities along your career. I have always loved speaking with people who have more experience than me, and likewise appreciate the opportunity to share my own story with people I might inspire along the way.
What do you think needs to happen to have more women in executive roles across various sectors in the profession?
I feel as though I have already started seeing more women in executive positions and leadership roles. The ones I know are excellent role models and champions, and it will be thanks to these women, and the men who stand with them, that the trend keeps shifting to a more equal representation. Covid might have helped actually. Everyone had to work from home. We all had to accept that a child or a dog could interrupt our Zooms at any moment. The curtain between personal and professional is lifted and maybe that will make us appreciate each other more. Maybe women won’t have to choose between family and career if they are given a little more support and recognition in both areas.
What has changed the most about your career since you started?
In the beginning, I never said no. I took extra shifts, I worked harder than anyone else… but I was also not afraid to try new things: speak at a conference, take on a new project in a therapeutic area I didn’t know. I leaned into EVERYTHING. And at a certain point, a female colleague of mine pointed out that I had been doing that so long that I had accumulated some pretty valuable experience. In fact, I am now an expert at what I do and I do it extremely well. I would never have been able to say that about myself even 10 years ago. So, I sometimes still lean in, but I also feel comfortable sitting back and taking in the bigger picture. I don’t have as much to prove anymore. It’s a nice place to be.