Aaron Reiter is one of those rare people who are always “on.” Kind, cordial, and quick to laugh, Reiter appears comfortable in just about every setting and has a knack for conversation, which makes him a natural at sales and marketing. Coming to the industry from medical sales, Reiter has quickly learned that the best thing about the ARM business is the people who work in it day-in, day-out. Read on to learn more about Aaron and why he’s the perfect kind of friend to have when you need to move a couch or more.
Name: Aaron Reiter
Length of time at current company: One year, five months
Length of time in industry: One year, five months
How did you get your start in the industry?
As with most professional journeys, mine is a story of who you know as much as what. One of my closest friends in the world is InterProse’s lead software coder and CTO, Greg Johnson. We have been friends for years and spent many a run or bike ride passing time by discussing our professional challenges, wins, losses, and sound-boarding ideas. Ultimately, InterProse’s need for a dedicated marketing representative who could also handle outbound and inbound sales opportunities coincided with my own professional growth trajectory and desire to leave an industry that had me traveling overnight most of the time.
What is your career highlight so far?
Rather than a single moment, I think my biggest highlight or happy revelation, is the caliber of professionals I have encountered in this industry. I have worked directly with surgeons, professional property developers, healthcare executives, and business owners throughout my career and this community of professionals has been the most hard working, thoughtful, innovative, and supportive of each other that I have encountered across multiple industries. Unlike my past roles, I enjoy the majority of these personal relationships as much as the professional connections.
When or how are you most productive?
I hope this doesn’t sound like a cop out, but I am most productive when inspired. I’ve found that my focus and productivity are directly tied to my ability to be creative or when I feel like I will affect substantial leaps in progress. Oh, and properly fueled with coffee – that helps.
Which industry professional do you admire most?
I admire any entrepreneur most. It takes supreme confidence and vision to strike out on one’s own – add to that the burden of responsibility for the continued livelihood of employees or dependents and you’ve got an individual or group that deserves great respect and deference.
What is one thing you do better than everyone else?
Questions like this aren’t fair because they require the responder to suppress modesty and risk feeling like a braggard. I’ll respond with what I recognize I do well, but I’m loathe to say I do it better than everyone else. I connect with people well – probably because I genuinely enjoy people and my interest in what is important to them is sincere.
What do you like most about this industry?
The people. This is by far the most genuine, supportive, fun-loving population of professionals I have encountered in my career thus far.
What is one thing you wish you could change about this industry?
Who doesn’t wish they could affect the public perception of the industry? I will admit to entering the industry with wildly inaccurate perceptions of the market but very quickly learned the reality of it and have become a strong champion for the issues important to the professionals who devote their professional careers to its causes.
If you weren’t in this industry, what would you be doing?
If I hadn’t been presented with the opportunity to take over InterProse’s marketing department, I would probably still be in medical sales. That’s a difficult industry to get into and I experienced great success while there. I would likely still be searching for a role with reduced travel so I could spend quality time with my two young kiddos.
Describe a typical work day.
I’d like to say I get into the gym every day at 6am, but that would be a lie – that’s maybe three days per week if I’m lucky. My office day starts between 8-8:30AM. The first order of the day is to make a list of items I hope to tackle before heading out to coach soccer or attend some Rotary event. Depending on what was left undone the previous day, it’s sales/vendor emails and phone calls or marketing/web content creation. I spend about half of my time on marketing and half of it on sales activities at this stage.
What is your guilty pleasure?
Turning off my brain in front of the television. It doesn’t happen very often, but if I get the opportunity to just binge watch a Netflix series or enjoy a recent Marvel movie, I do love taking a selfish break from all of my commitments.
What is the best advice you’ve ever received?
Research a topic or individual completely before engaging in a discussion. Early on in my medical sales career when I was young and had just recently been promoted to selling a procedure for the treatment of prostate and kidney cancer, I had a meeting with a tenured urologist in Seattle. He wanted to share very detailed data to discuss outcomes (duh – we were talking about cancer!) and I was unprepared. Instead of throwing me out of his office, he smiled and graciously shifted gears to career advice. I was able to thank him years later at his retirement party after becoming a sales trainer and the lead sales contact for published data pertaining the cancer therapy we provided.
What are you currently reading?
The book currently feeling neglected on my nightstand is A Short History of Nearly Everything by Bill Bryson. I highly recommend it for its jam-packed content and wonderful humor.
What is one fact you’d like everyone in the industry to know about you?
I am perpetually overcommitted and don’t appear to have the ability to say “no” to anything. I coach soccer and volleyball for my 12-year-old daughter, I’m president of the Camas-Washougal Rotary Club, I’m doing all of the backsplash tile for our recent kitchen remodel and redoing all the molding in our house. If you’re moving, just give me a call and I’ll probably head over with my truck.
Who else would you like to see answer these questions?
I recently had the opportunity to spend some time with Roger Weiss, president-elect of the ACA. I learned that he used to be a stand-up comedian, so I’m sure his answers would not only be fascinating but wickedly funny.