Join the Aspiring MSL Mastermind Group and build a successful career!

Extremely limited membership: 5 aspiring MSLs only

Register Now to Secure Your spot on our informational meeting on 12/4 @ 11AM EST


In response to our members’ requests for an added layer of support to break into the MSL role, we are delighted to invite you to join an exclusive, limited-enrollment Mastermind group. The program is designed for aspiring MSLs who are looking for a supportive group of likeminded colleagues that can help each other reach their goals under the expert guidance of an executive MSL.

Following are the details and links to register for our informational meeting on 4 December 2020 at 11 AM EST. Get the New Year off to a great start. Register today while space is available.


  • Weekly 60-minute meetings over 3 months.
  • Cohort strictly limited to 5 aspiring MSL with different territories/therapeutic areas.
  • The focus is on conversations and exercises to set goals for your MSL career, take action, and hold yourself accountable for success.


  • Leverage peer accountability with other success-driven participants to develop and achieve goals.
  • Develop new, creative ideas to succeed.
  • Stretch your self-imposed boundaries with aid of a trained facilitator who provides a trusted community.
  • Get clear on your goals, take action, and gain accountability partners.
  • Connect with likeminded aspiring MSLs focused on similar objectives.
  • Build a sense of community and have your own personal advisory board of other solopreneurs.

Your Mastermind Group will be led by Marieke Jonkman, PharmD., BCMAS, MHL, ICF-ACC. Marieke is the perfect coach and professional for this role. She is the founder of The MSL Coach and a former executive MSL with over 20 years of experience in the pharmaceutical industry. As an executive coach, master facilitator and trainer, she will lead this mastermind group to ensure objectives are met.

In this 12-week program Marieke will take you through the paces to set and achieve your goals, while building familiarity with the pharmaceutical industry and polishing your brand. Bottom line: Marieke and your Aspiring MSL Mastermind Group can accelerate and advance your progress towards your goals!

Register to Join Us

Seats are limited, so be sure to sign up soon to reserve your spot now!

“I really enjoyed our sessions. I certainly would recommend this to aspiring MSLs and to people like myself who need the support of others to break into the role .”
Beth S.

The Lost Art of the Thank You Note

We are the experts at relationship building, and yet, how many of us are sending ‘Thank You’ notes? Or even handwritten notes?

And I don’t mean just after an interview, but also after a KOL meeting. It can make all the difference, and yet few of us do. On the same note (pun intended), a badly written ‘Thank You’ note or email can be damaging too. So what is a good ‘Thank You’ email or handwritten note, and when do you send it?

What To Say In That Stellar ‘Thank You’ Note?

It differs slightly for a post-job interview versus a post-KOL meeting. After a job interview, your email should:

  • Express gratitude
  • Something specific about the conversation or items discussed
  • Why you are excited about the opportunity
  • Why you are a good fit for the job
  • Next steps and your contact information

After a KOL meeting your email should:

  • Express gratitude
  • Follow up on items discussed
  • The value you can add
  • Summarize action items
  • Next steps and your contact information

Express Gratitude

Hiring managers and KOLs like to work with MSLs that are generous and respectful and saying thank you is one way of demonstrating those characteristics. They took time out of their busy day to talk to you and not attend to patients or other daily or even urgent business.

Something Specific

Everyone wants to be heard and acknowledged. Hiring managers, or KOLs, don’t want to read about something you said but see a reflection of what they mentioned. Talk about a specific question they asked or a specific answer they gave to your question. Your email can be the time to build upon your discussion or correct a misconception. Of course, as an MSL, be very cautious about what you put in a permanent record, aka an email.

The Value You Can Add

KOLs, hiring managers, they are busy! Show them how you can make a difference and how excited you are about either joining the company or working together with the KOL. If this was a job interview, you want to highlight why your previous experience or skills are relevant and make you a good fit for the job.

Summarize Action Items & Next Steps

Hopefully, your meeting with the KOL or hiring manager went well. If this was a KOL meeting, this is the time to summarize action items. Are they planning on submitting an IST? Would they like some specific information? Make sure the KOL knows that you are following up and what/when it will be done.

Contact Information

Make sure your signature line not only has your correct contact information but is complete! It should be easy for whoever reads the email to be able to contact you. Make sure that your phone number is correct and can receive text messages. Some business phone apps will allow you to have a business phone number but are not able to receive text messages, so make sure you can!

The PS

Did the hiring manager or the KOL mention something personal? Don’t hesitate to put it in a PS! How did little Johnie’s baseball game go? You mentioned the coffee at the corner store, and I went and had a delicious cup, thank you for the recommendation!

The Handwritten Note

Does anyone still write them? I do! Especially if I’ve met a KOL for the first time. I follow up on my emails with a very simple handwritten note card. I thank them briefly for their time, say that I’m excited to work with them and look forward to seeing them again in the future. Make sure you add your business card, as you don’t want the KOL/hiring manager to wonder who this came from!

When to send it?

Ideally, the ‘Thank You’ email is sent within 6-8 hours post-meeting, but definitely within 24 hours. It can be challenging when you are at a conference, or if it is Friday. If my meeting is on Friday, I make sure the note goes out before 5 PM and not on the weekend, or worse, on Monday. You want to make sure you stay fresh in their minds! At conferences, this can be particularly challenging, but I always try to find some time (while at the booth?) to make sure my emails go out!

When to follow up?

If you are sending the ‘Thank You’ note expecting a response, you may be disappointed! If you get a reply, that would be very encouraging, but extraordinary. Unless, of course, there were action items that needed to be addressed. Generally speaking, it is ok to send a follow up approximately 10 days after your initial email.

How Formal Should You Be?

“Hi, Jon!” would probably not be the right way to address that international well known KOL that prefers to be addressed as Dr, or addresses you as Dr. Likewise it would be awkward if the KOL/hiring manager would prefer to be called ‘Jonathan’ and you address him as ‘Jon.’ Be sensitive and cautious. Better too formal than not!


Send it too late!

A common mistake is that the ‘Thank You’ email/note is sent days after the meeting. While it is better to send the email late than never, try to be conscious of time. You want to stay fresh in their minds!

Forget to send it to everyone you met!

Just because someone isn’t the hiring manager doesn’t mean they don’t have a say in whether you get hired or not. Likewise, the admin is the most important gatekeeper in getting you appointments! You want to be on his/her best side and to remember you for when you are looking for follow up appointments!

Send the same template to everyone!

Make sure you customize each email/note to the person you are addressing and send them individually. If at a job interview, you meet with several people, you want to make sure you acknowledge each conversation individually. When they discuss your interview, they will mention the ‘Thank You’ note and compare. Of course, if you have a joint meeting with several KOLs and you need to address action items, it will be more convenient to send 1 email.

Forget to proofread

Yes, this should be a no-brainer, but many people still forget! Spelling and grammar mistakes will look poorly on you, so take a minute and make sure everything is correct!

Follow up too much

Following up is important, and you can reply to the first email you sent, but don’t sent more than 2 emails and space them out in time. Especially when interviewing, you don’t want to come across as needy, or desperate for the job.

Wrong contact information

Maybe they’ve tried to call you, but your phone number was wrong? Or there is a letter missing in the email address you provided? Simple mistakes with huge consequences, yet I’ve seen them many times.

I’ve made some quick and very generic sample ‘Thank You’ notes, and you can download them here.

Let me know in the comments if you send ‘Thank You’ notes and what your best-practices are. I’d love to hear from you!

Hello World!


Be yourself; Everyone else is already taken.

— Oscar Wilde.

When I just started as an MSL, it was all somewhat overwhelming. I had the skills, but putting it all together and connecting the dots took some time. There were many things I wish I knew then that I know now.

With this blog, I would like to share with you my experiences and the things I have learned over the years. I will touch on various topics from how to get that appointment, to the structure of the Medical Affairs department.

I hope you will enjoy reading and I welcome your comments and feedback. If you have any topics that you would like to see addressed, please let me know through the contact form, and I will get right on it! If you are an experienced MSL or MSL manager and would like to share your experiences, I’d love to hear from you as well!

Onwards we go!