TO BE SUCCESSFUL YOU MUST LEARN & ADAPT W/ SKENDER DAERTI
AN UNWILLINGNESS TO SEEK EXPERT, INDEPENDENT ADVICE CAN GREATLY HAMSTRING YOUR CHANCES OF MARKET SUCCESS BEING HUMBLE, PATIENT AND WILLING TO LEARN AND ADAPT CAN BE YOUR SECRET WEAPON
IT MATTERS NOT WHETHER YOUR COMPANY IS WELL-KNOWN OR UNKNOWN, or whether you’re big, small or somewhere in-between. A reluctance to consult with outside, expert consultants can be the difference between outrageous success … or a complete marketplace face-splat. Even if you’ve got the latest and greatest innovation in medical technology!
So why do some companies bypass solid advice, rush to market, pinch pennies and risk failure while others do not? Let’s take a look …
Daerti shared an example of a med-tech company in the oncology space that had already gained a reputation for having superior technology. A number of leading physicians had indicated that their clinical outcomes were significantly improved when using this company’s offering.
No one questioned the high quality of the technology but company leadership and an unwillingness to adapt to a rapidly changing healthcare industry proved to be their Achilles heel. Like it or not, the world has changed. A lot! What worked yesterday simply doesn’t fit today’s world. And in the case of this particular company, what once seemed to be so promising turned out to be a missed opportunity.
“They were still in a mindset from 15 years ago,” Daerti explained. “They were very linear, very binary, very transaction-oriented.”
Instead, the company would’ve been better served to accept today’s “new normal” which is to say they should’ve embraced the reality of consumer-driven influences in the decision-making process. “They basically said, ‘I have a product. I try to sell it to Clinician A and, if Clinician A likes it, hopefully they will buy it and a P.O. will be generated’. That’s a sign they have not adapted to the times.”
Ironically, the company was wise enough to identify marketplace needs and innovative enough to create a superior med-tech offering but failed to focus on the extreme complexities of today’s healthcare world. They knew where they wanted to go but chose not to map out the best route-to-market in advance and also failed to ask for directions when they found themselves lost.
When a med-tech has a mindset of “This is how we do it, this is how we are going to do it”, they’re essentially sealing their own fate, according to Daerti.
Time is money, and money matters. Understandably, companies are eager to get to market in the most time-efficient, cost-efficient manner possible so they can start closing deals and generating profit. But sometimes this impatience means they opt out of due-diligence in favor of saving time and saving money.
In another twist of irony, in many cases, when a company believes it knows all it needs to know, it usually doesn’t.
So, what’s the solution?
HUMILITY + PATIENCE + OPEN-MINDEDNESS + FLEXIBILITY = SUCCESS!
Daerti then shared an example of a med-tech company that took more of a “steady as she goes”, stair-stepped approach to market that eventually yielded a tremendous windfall. It may have taken more time and cost a few more dollars along the way but, in the end, they were handsomely rewarded.
“I had a chance to speak to the founders of this company a couple of times and was struck by the fact they were so humble,” Daerti said. “Their philosophy was to start small, learn the market, gain an understanding of what it would take to be successful and expend the necessary resources in this one region.”
They wanted one successful conversion of one hospital so they could learn and adapt their technologies to best meet that hospital’s needs, then move on to the next hospital. The company analyzed results, identified what was working and what wasn’t working, and made adjustments before going any further.
This purposeful, trial-and-error approach allowed them to course-correct, as needed. [Remember, Thomas Edison once said of his arduous journey to inventing the light bulb, “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.”]
Part of the company’s course-correction was to seek [and actually heed] the advice of those expert in taking products and services to market in a constantly evolving, increasingly complex healthcare industry. They were humble enough to admit they “didn’t know what they didn’t know” and were open-minded enough to seek counsel and learn. They also resisted the knee-jerk urge to be an overnight success, understanding a more carefully planned and calculated approach would ensure the tortoise lapped the hare once again.
Three years after start-up, the second company was sold for several hundred million dollars. [The founders have successfully executed a similar strategy in taking several other companies from start-up to successful exit, whistling happily to the bank each time.]
“This was accomplished because their growth trajectory was so sound and their profitability was so sound,” Daerti said. Their walk-before-you-run, learn-along-the-way approach helped them create a proven roadmap to success and profitability that made them an irresistible acquisition target.
“If your product isn’t getting traction, be willing to seek outside help,” Daerti continues. “Develop focus groups, bring in consultants who can expose your team to new ways of doing things. Above all, be willing to adapt. You may have a vision and launch your company with certain beliefs and biases then quickly learn the marketplace is completely different than it used to be. Adaptation in our industry is so important to success!”
ABOUT SKENDER DAERTI – Skender Daerti is President and Founder of The Clinician Exchange (TCX) and Managing Partner at Healthcare Supplier Solutions (HHS). Skender is a leader, a visionary strategist and an advocate for the continued advancement of healthcare. He consistently produces results by designing programs that deliver value to a vast network of providers, suppliers and clinicians. Skender is a proven innovator of both product and strategy and has a keen understanding of the complex healthcare purchasing matrix. He focuses on the needs of Senior Leadership in healthcare organizations and develops market-penetration strategies that shorten learning curves, reduce costs and waste, and drive improved patient outcomes.
ABOUT EXCELERANT CONSULTING — Based in Scottsdale, AZ, Excelerant Consulting, LLC, offers two tiers of expert healthcare industry consulting services:
- A full portfolio of end-to-end solutions, including healthcare system contract negotiation, strategic planning and execution, and sales force development and optimization.
- Excel Advisor™, a scaled, value-priced healthcare consulting service billed by the hour.
The privately held company has longstanding relationships within every major Group Purchasing Organization [GPO], Integrated Delivery Network [IDN] and Regional Purchasing Coalition [RPC] and prides itself on expertly leading clients through today’s rapidly changing, increasingly complex healthcare environment. For more information, visit www.excelerantconsulting.com or call Frank Ripullo [949.842.2520] or Nancy Kailas [847.682.8532].