Today we have Dr. Collier Griffin, Product Manager at Synapse Health. She has a fascinating, diverse background, and we’re touching base on how to transition into product management, the Web 3 in healthcare, building successful teams, and working with offshore teams. As a registered general practitioner, she left the medical profession to work in marketing digital products because she felt she could improve the lives of average patients more effectively this way.
Bridging Medicine, Technology, and Business
It all started with the transition from paper cards to EMRs. Product management is the best way to set up business processes to connect medicine, technology, and business. There are more than a million doctors and lawyers in the U.S., but no more than 50,000 product managers. But if you have a degree in medicine and skills in business, you have to take advantage of that because it’s a great combination.
According to Collier, you should encourage people to hire people with a medical background who know the intricacies of this world. Because when you know how things work, you ask better questions, get better answers, create better products, and spend less time. So it’s a win-win if you know how to transfer your medical expertise into product management.
When you know your target audience, you’re not creating something for the sake of creating something good but for the sake of actually using it. And the user kept coming back and wanting to use it because it made their life easier.
Doctors and Product Managers in Data Processing
Dr. Griffin makes the interesting point that a doctor’s job, like a product manager’s, involves processing a lot of data and looking for patterns.
In the startup world, you wear many hats, so you can be a product owner, a scrum master, a UX/UI designer, and a project manager.
I love a good brainstorming session, and it’s important for everyone to feel like they’ve given something to that project. That goes to basic human psychology.
Collier has worked with teams from other countries, and she emphasizes the importance of finding common ground – you have different languages, different cultures, and different perspectives on life… In her opinion, it is important to outline and present as much of the project as possible ahead of time because most people are visual and absorb information better that way.
Regarding the medical data storage system, Dr. Griffin compares the systems in the U.S. and Switzerland. Waiting times for appointments are strikingly different and not in favor of the first country. There are a lot of lawsuits against doctors and hospitals because of such gaps. But Collier has a solution:
My greatest hope is that there becomes a private blockchain for the government where everyone can keep their medical records for privacy and security. No matter what doctor you visit, it is connected to every EMR. You can instantly pull up patient records in real time and see exactly what’s going on.
Building trust and efficiency in Healthtech
Most Americans don’t have a medical mindset, meaning they just verbally tell this or that doctor what procedures they’ve had before. But it would be much more convenient if they had it all in one place, safe and sound.
You can’t get emotionally attached to a product because by getting feedback that is not the most positive, you can become a wall in defense of what you’re doing instead of hearing critics’ arguments. I have to put my voice aside, even when it comes to what I think the button should look like, and how it will work best for the user, no matter what my opinion is.
Collier also shared her view of SMM strategy – when it comes to health tech, I haven’t seen any company that uses social media to the extent that other companies in other industries might use it. You don’t have to put up silly memes and Tik Tock in health tech. At the same time, it’s not enough to just have a social media presence, especially when it comes to new technologies like Web 3. Not every company needs a metaverse. Just because you have web3 doesn’t mean you have to have a metaverse and doesn’t mean you have to have NFTs, but being able to use social media is important.
For users to come back and keep using technology, they need to know that there is good intent behind the data they provide to the company.
Building your future in diverse fields
Collier notes that her career path is not the most common, but there are nurses who have moved on to software developers, and there are pharmacists who have moved on to UX-UI designers. It’s important to start somewhere:
Go through LinkedIn, find someone who works in a field that interests you, and send a couple of people a message saying, “Hey, can you chat for 15 minutes?” You’ll be surprised how many conversations you can have just by asking because the answer is always known until you ask. So build your network and find people who are potentially in that field.
The APP Solutions launched a podcast, CareMinds, where you can hear from respected experts in healthcare and Health Tech.
Who is a successful product manager in the healthcare domain? Which skills and qualities are crucial? How important is this role in moving a successful business to new achievements? Responsibilities and KPIs?
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