Doing Well By Doing Good

Paul Sklar
Commercial Lead—Innovation Search & Evaluation

As the New Year begins, I find myself asking, "Why do I get up for work in the morning?" Of course, earning a living is an important reason.

But there’s more: It’s the opportunity to earn a living while simultaneously helping people that really resonates with me. That’s why I consider the "magic" of GSK Consumer Healthcare to be "Doing Well by Doing Good."

GSK Consumer Healthcare is a successful company by objective measures, including market share, sales and profitability. And all of that success stems from delivering products that really make a difference in consumer’s lives, that "do good."

Consider just these few examples:

  • Flonase Allergy Relief—Allergies can make the simple act of breathing very tough. This difficulty breathing, along with the runny nose, sneezing and itchy, watery eyes of allergies make sufferers exhausted and may even cause others to avoid them. When Flonase Allergy Relief delivers 24 hours of allergy relief, that is doing good.
  • Abreva—Cold sores are not life threatening, but they make people self-conscious so they may withdraw from everyday interactions with others. When Abreva helps speed the healing of cold sores and thereby let sufferers get back to their lives more quickly, that is doing good.
  • Excedrin—Migraine pain and other associated symptoms are debilitating for many sufferers. When Excedrin Migraine helps relieve this terrible pain, that is doing good.
  • Sensodyne—No one wants to go through life knowing that drinking hot coffee or licking an ice cream cone will cause shooting pain in his/her teeth and gums. When Sensodyne products allow people to enjoy these simple pleasures, that is doing good.

Perhaps the prime examples of "Doing Well by Doing Good” are our products to help people quit smoking, like Nicorette and NicoDerm CQ in the US and similar brands in other global markets. It’s important to know that smoking is the leading cause of preventable death, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and that tobacco use causes almost 6 million deaths per year, according to the World Health Organization.1,2

In 1996, GSK achieved the first prescription to over-the-counter (OTC) switch of a nicotine replacement therapy approved by the Federal Drug Administration to help people quit smoking. In the years immediately after that US Rx-to-OTC switch, the more convenient consumer access and greater awareness associated with OTC status increased the number of nicotine-replacement-assisted quit attempts by 2 to 3 times, leading to millions of extra quit attempts. And clinical studies show that nicotine-replacement-assisted quit attempts are twice as likely to be successful compared to "cold turkey" quit attempts. Considering all of this, the amount of lives that have likely been saved by helping people to successfully quit smoking, the "doing good," has been immense.

I am very proud to be part of the company that has done this.

If you’re reading this blog, I’m guessing you have a product, a service, or an idea that can do good for people. And, of course, financial reward would also be nice. So contact us, and together we’ll add your project to our long list of initiatives that are "Doing Well by Doing Good."


P.S. Take a look at this video showing the progress in the United States with reducing the rate of smoking. At GSK Consumer Healthcare, we’re proud of the part we’ve played in this progress and will continue our efforts toward eventually reducing the smoking rate to zero.



  1. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Smoking and tobacco use: fast facts.
    /fact_sheets/fast_facts/index.htm. Accessed on November 15, 2016.
  2. World Health Organization. WHO Report on the Global Tobacco Epidemic, 2011: Warning About the Dangers of Tobacco. Geneva: World Health Organization, 2011.


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