The ever-evolving landscape of the healthcare industry demands visionary leaders who are capable of navigating complex challenges and shaping the future of services. These leaders play a crucial role in improving patient outcomes, driving innovation, and ensuring the provision of accessible, high-quality care for individuals and communities worldwide. Effective healthcare leaders advocate organizational success and prioritize public health over anything else. Vanee Gosiengfiago (General Manager at Sanofi Consumer Healthcare) is one such leader who works to transform individual lives by harnessing innovation and improving healthcare outcomes.
Legacy of More Than 50 Years
Sanofi has a history of helping individuals and communities all across the world. Over the past half-century, it has evolved into one of the world’s leading healthcare companies, representing a culmination of diverse entities with a rich history of healthcare innovation dating back to the 19th century.
With a presence in 90 countries and a workforce of over 91,000 employees, Sanofi continues this legacy, united by a common purpose of pursuing scientific miracles to enhance people’s lives. In 2023, Sanofi celebrated its 50th anniversary. What began as an entrepreneurial endeavor has transformed into a global enterprise, comprising numerous companies from around the world.
Transforming through Purpose
As general manager of Sanofi Consumer Healthcare, Vanee Gosiengfiao is directing her career towards effective transformation in leadership positions. Throughout various jobs and roles in different companies, she found fulfilment in affecting transformation. The transformation is majorly related to business models, revolutionizing companies into growth or profitability or transforming brands into profitable yields, increasing market share, or reconstructing teams.
Holding the purpose of transformation, Vanee thinks that one cannot have a stable business without the ability to transform. Every industry is witnessing changes in its functioning and various companies are welcoming these changes by innovating things around them and staying sustainable in their businesses.
According to Vanee, this is the most prominent way for every business to bring stability and sustainability to its operation. To survive in the market, it is important to remain disruptive. Leadership roles are now more crucial as companies are changing internally as well as externally. In such situations, a leader has to keep calm and maintain trust in the team when things are changing around them.
Vanee’s team underwent a significant transformation as a result of the trust she helped to foster; it was now willing to take risks, be open to making mistakes, and be okay with them. Her team had a wide approach though their roles and portfolios were changing in a couple of years. The team was flexible with the changing business models since people found their own purpose and had their leader and team as an anchor.
Educating People about Proper Self Care
Sanofi Consumer Healthcare is the world’s leading pharmaceutical company and Vanee handles responsibilities of the healthcare division where there are personal care products available over-the-counter (OTC). Sanofi aims to provide health in people’s hands through proper self-care. Moreover, its mission is to provide education to people on proper self-care and enable them to take care of themselves through Sanofi’s branded products.
- Consumer Healthcare at Sanofi takes the time to understand what people need to ensure they’re fully present and productive in their daily lives. It does this through a broad, worldwide portfolio that spans pain care, digestive wellness, physical and mental wellness, allergy, cough, cold and flu.
- Consumer Healthcare at Sanofi aims to improve health outcomes through empowered self-care. Why? Because through self-care, people have been able to save a total of 40.8 billion days. With better health, people are more likely to live a productive life, play a role in their communities, and benefit the economy.
The organization educates them on when to see a doctor or a pharmacist. As the pandemic has taught the importance of a healthy lifestyle, it cannot be taken for granted. Self-care has become more important and valuable now that it is difficult to always rely on the healthcare system. For minor ailments especially, Vanee thinks everyone should be properly educated and aware of what could be done in times of crisis.
By increasing awareness of digestive wellness or proper physical and mental wellness, Vanee decides to take her company one step further by educating people on how to take care of themselves. Therefore, her organization is partnering with various pharmacists and healthcare professionals to provide self-care education to consumers and shoppers. To provide education at store levels, the organization is partnering with various retailers. Thereafter, different digital platforms like Swipe Rx are assisting Sanofi to fulfil its mission of providing self-care education to communities.
Global Self-Care Federation. Self-care Socio-Economic Research. Available at GSCF Socio-Economic Research 2 page flyer reference (1).pdf (last accessed 1 June 2022)
Transforming Brands through Purpose
Sanofi provides medical education to pharmacists not just in its own country Philippines but also in other parts of Southeast Asia. Its objective of advocacy is to continue to promote awareness and education and help pharmacists by teaching people how to be self-aware about their health conditions. Through inventory management and business acumen, the company supports better counseling and business partners. Apart from products, Sanofi continues to create health awareness in society through pharmacists, digital platforms, and doctors and healthcare professionals. These partnerships make sure that self-care education does not limit only to face-to-face interactions but also becomes a part of round table discussions and symposia and keeps providing medical education.
As a part of advocacy, Sanofi prevents childhood deaths that occur due to improper hygiene. Catering to this, the organization is partnered with ‘Save the Children Globally’ which provides proper hygiene education to children in the Philippines as well as in other parts of the world. Apart from providing health education, Vanee’s organization is instrumental in supplying community kitchens to underprivileged communities. Furthermore, it provides toilets, hand-washing equipment, and sanitation facilities to government schools.
Transforming Future Leaders
Furthermore, she had found accomplishments in transforming people who are instrumental in mutating the business to a higher level. Being a certified coach at International Coach Federation and Gallup Strengths Finder, Vanee has discovered her ambition in transforming leaders and generating future leaders. According to her, the real leadership philosophy is being able to find the purpose, live for the same objective, and lead the transformation in businesses.
Vanee considers herself privileged in terms of receiving fantastic mentors who enabled her to discover capabilities within her. Her mentors, who were from many nations, gave her the self-assurance to become the leader she want to be in her life. Being the only female in the boardroom, her mentors did not make her feel that she is one of the minorities.
Vanee is a member of the Pilipino CEO circle which enables women to become leaders in their field. She encourages them to coach future leaders to become who they want to be and find their uniqueness. The uniqueness is not just in terms of gender, but also regarding personality and strengths. It is important to discover various qualities of being a leader apart from the traditional assertive type of masculine energy.
Vanee explains various leadership styles and asks everyone to come up with their own version which feels truly authentic. It is a crucial thing to have self-confidence in the workplace and communities to own the decisions. Vanee considers herself fortunate in this sector because she received support from her mentors and did not experience many challenges as a woman leader. Now, she is responsible to contribute further to future leaders and help them realize their true potential, and discover their unique characteristics and leadership style.
Being Brave and Bold
Being a coach at Gallup Strengths Finder, Vanee practices her leadership style along with her team and thinks that there are various unique qualities an ideal woman leader should possess. They can be different for every person as there is no one size fits all approach. Everyone has unique qualities in themselves which drive them to work hard for success. Vanee says that one should take efforts to figure out such qualities within them and become able to use the value strengths at its optimal best level. At the workplace, Vanee mentions being brave and bold to be exclusive while leading the team irrespective of gender plays a crucial role.