Photos of employee Doug Kuzniar with his dog, with family, and by himself.

Employee Spotlight:
Doug Kuzniar

Takeda’s Commercial Leadership Development Program (CLDP) is committed to building future leaders with commercial competencies and leadership skills that allow them to successfully drive superior business results in a complex global healthcare environment.

CLDP Associates gain valuable experience across the commercial organization through three rotations geared towards broadening their understanding of the business while enhancing management and leadership skills.

Recently, we sat down with our CLDP graduate Doug Kuzniar to learn more about his experience at Takeda and his CLDP journey. Continue reading to learn more about Doug’s experience working at Takeda.

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Describe your internship experience and what led you to accept a full-time offer to join the CLDP?

Before business school, I had worked with Takeda and was always struck by how often employees spoke about the patient-focused culture – and I met many that had been with the organization for years and years. The Takeda culture always stayed in the back of my mind as a differentiator, so it was an easy decision for me to pursue the CLDP internship.

During my summer at Takeda, I worked in the Neuroscience Business Unit to develop a business plan and new model for customer engagement in the field. The project required not only cross-functional input but also alignment from leadership along the way. I was struck by how Takeda employees at all levels were so generous with their time. I had 50+ 1:1 meetings over the summer to support development of the business plan – people are incredibly experienced here, yet humble and excited to help others grow. This culture, coupled with Takeda’s strong pipeline, led me to accept an offer to join the CLDP full-time.

Describe your rotations. What did you learn and how were they different?

As a full-time CLDP associate, I worked in Sales and Marketing. I spent my first nine months in the field as a sales representative in Milwaukee, WI. If I’m being honest, I was pretty nervous at first about this rotation. My nerves calmed quickly though, as Takeda invested a lot in me to help ensure I felt prepared and confident. From the extensive disease and product training to my manager and territory counterpart, there were so many different layers of support in place to help me grow and be effective in role on Day 1.

I drew on numerous lessons-learned as I moved into my next rotation – like in any industry, there’s simply no substitute for getting sustained facetime with your customers. Moving to Marketing, I was fortunate to join a launch effort that was just kicking off. That allowed me to be a part of and lead a number of foundational projects. My main takeaway from that rotation was a real appreciation for the roles different functions play to support a launch and how Marketing can be an engaged and thoughtful partner in that process.

How did the CLDP help you achieve success?

The CLDP has just the right amount of structure and process. There’s a solid foundation that allows full-time associates to explore different functions and business units, but there’s an emphasis on making it ‘your journey’ too. I built not only my marketing skills in a very sustained way, but also my knowledge of a disease state, product, and how a cross-functional launch team works together. All of this combined with leaders taking a thoughtful look at my previous 10+ years of experience prior to Takeda helped me move into my full-time role after the CLDP.

"The CLDP has just the right amount of structure and process. There’s a solid foundation that allows full-time associates to explore different functions and business units, but there’s an emphasis on making it ‘your journey’ too."

Describe the support you received throughout the CLDP?

I was very fortunate to have outstanding managers throughout my time in the CLDP. With decades of experience in hand, they strove to create an environment where I could ‘safely fail’ so I could ultimately grow. My current manager is my biggest advocate – and she makes what we do fun. Additionally, I, like all full-time CLDP Associates, received mentorship from a senior leader in the organization. It was hugely advantageous to have this type of perspective to augment decision-making and approaches to work projects.

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Where is he now?

After transitioning into his full-time role, Doug continues to stay engaged with the CLDP serving as a mentor for our CLDP Summer Associates and assisting throughout our hiring process. We are so proud of Doug’s accomplishments and look forward to learning more about his career as he continues making an impact on the patients we serve.

Interested in learning more about the CLDP program? Visit

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