Why Start a Company?

Jay Hohfeler

Why start a company called OnSIGHT Health? Because of folks like my dear friends, Jay and Beth Hohfeler. Three years ago, Jay was diagnosed with stage four lymphoma. Cancer treatment and a bone marrow transplant led to additional complications: Graft vs. Host disease, diabetes, and osteoporosis to name a few. To say the process was complex and confusing for Jay’s family would be an understatement.

Catastrophic health conditions throw patients and their families into a tailspin. Still reeling from the diagnosis, patients must interpret mountains of research, identify the best specialists, communicate with healthcare providers and engage with insurance companies. Frustrated, scared and feeling out of control, patients need an advocate.

OnSIGHT Health is case management for catastrophic and complex cases. Within 48 hours of diagnosis, we provide an onsite, highly skilled nurse to assist the family as they navigate the complexity of the healthcare delivery system. Our goal is to bring clarity in the midst of chaos.

One day my friend Jay had what he thought was a bad case of indigestion. The next day he was fighting for his life. When I asked him what would have made a difference in his treatment, he quickly replied,
“We had no idea where to begin when I was diagnosed. Friends and family helped with the children and made meals, but none of us had experience with lymphoma. Having someone who understood the complexity of my treatment, could interpret the medical terms, make sense the medication and bring the team of healthcare professionals together would have been a game-changer.”

I’m delighted to tell you that three years later, after years of complicated treatment costing millions of dollars, you can see in the picture of his beautiful family, Jay is in complete remission.

With 30 years of experience in healthcare management, I can tell you Jay’s story is all too common. Complex cases are connected to real people who deserve to have someone fighting on their behalf. OnSIGHT Health provides “boots on the ground” case management to walk with the patient as they build the most effective treatment plan possible.

You can learn more about what we do by visiting http://www.communitas.com.  We are bringing clarity to chaos in healthcare.

It’s the Little Things

So 2014 is here and another year to improve but what does improvement look like?  How do you know you are moving forward.  I’m a fan of the Olympics and I remember watching the Winter Olympics in 2010.   I was amazed at the slim margin that separated  first place from second place.  During the Winter Olympics the New York Times had a chart entitled “Fractions of a Second: The margin Between Gold and Also-Ran.”  In this chart it highlights that in the blink of an eye a person can go from getting the gold medal to coming in second.  Some examples:

Event                                                                          Winning Time                       Seconds behind first place

Men’s Downhill                                                             1:54.31                                  less than 0.25 seconds

Women’s Giant slalom                                               2:27.11                                  less than 0.25 seconds

Women’s 1,000 meter speed skating                   1:16.56                                  less than 0.25 seconds

The chart in the Times has many other events listed with the same time difference.  When I read this I have to stop and wonder, what separated the gold medal winner from second place?  Did they train harder, work longer, work smarter in the four years leading up to the Olympics?  Was it their equipment, their coaching, their diet, etc?  As I watched the Olympics these questions continued to circle in my mind and what I keep coming back to in how to answer these questions is with a simple YES!  To get the gold medal requires you to work longer, harder and smarter.  To constantly be looking for the best coaching techniques, the best equipment to push them to be the best is the heart and soul of an Olympic champion.  This same intensity can apply to business.  Who are those leaders in the market?  What keeps them on top or pushes them to displace the “gold medal winners of the past.”  It comes down to doing the little things well.  Daily looking at ways to improve or see what your competitors are doing and figuring out ways to differentiate yourselves.  It’s constantly looking at ways to reinvent your business as the market changes and knowing where you can be successful.  It’s the little things that add up to the big wins.

A Simple Thank You

Ok I’m a really simple guy but sometimes simple things are the best things in life.  In my last post I shared that in the business world I’m amazed at how much training dollars are spent on teaching people how to be nice to customers.  Is it that hard?  Apparently so.  When you think about it saying “thank you” is a relatively easy phrase to say.  Now if you really want to hit it out of the park, send a personal “thank you” note.  In this day of emails, text messages, instant messages, Facebook, etc we have lost the art of sending a thank you note.  When was the last time you received a handwritten thank you note?  I’m waiting…still waiting…Correct.  Most likely you haven’t received one in a very long time.  In business it is essential that clients are thanked for their business.  What better way than a personal thank you note.  One of my favorite authors and speakers is Tom Peters.  I have posted a simple 2 minute video on his view of the “thank you” note.  Watch, enjoy and Thank You for reading.

“The deepest human need is the need to be appreciated” – William James

Memo to self:Don’t Do That

I’ve been in the business world for nearly 26 years.  In that time I’ve had the unique pleasure to meet and interact with some of the best business minds. Unfortunately I have had the displeasure of interacting with some of the most abusive, ego centric, greedy people as well.  If I were to boil down my learnings from these years of business I would say it would come down to a few points:

1. Never ask someone to do something you are not willing to do yourself.  People hate dictators especially ones who don’t know what you do nor care to know. 

2. Know the people’s names who work for you and with you.  When you address people by their first names it brings great joy to that individual.  It shows you care enough to know their name.  I know some people have a hard time remembering names.  Get over it.  Remember their names!

3. Say “please” and “thank you.”  I’m amazed that companies today have to spend so much training dollars on teaching people how to be nice to a customer. 

4. Learn from other people’s mistakes.  Even better, learn from your own.  Mistakes are the greatest educational experience you can learn from. 

5. Memo to self: Don’t Do That.  A recent article in the New York Times interviewed a digital marketing executive about his views on business.  He had an interesting observation that when he see’s someone doing something in the business world that is unacceptable, unethical, or just plain stupid, he  makes a “mental memo” titled “Don’t Do That.”  Click link for full  interview .   The New York Times (free registration)

6. Don’t take yourself too seriously.  As one of my dear friends once said, “the graveyard is filled with irreplaceable people.” 

Thank you for reading my post.  Life is short.  Make a difference.

Welcome to my blog

In my professional life, I blog about the healthcare industry, which I’ve been in for many years. I decided to start this personal blog, because I’d like to share my musings about other things that are important to me … and maybe to you.

  • I have a loving, fun family that  teaches me a lot;
  • I serve on several boards that make a meaningful impact on lives in North America and Africa;
  • I am constantly reading business books and books about elevating one’s game;
  • and I like to laugh.

Your feedback is welcome. Thank you for visiting.