Morning Steve, what did we steal you away from?
- I was in the middle of some strategic planning thinking about strategic channel partners to get HealthNow into the hands of our consumers early with scale of use.
Sounds intense! I can’t wait to see the plan become action.
- Me too, it’s been a great period of research, development and planning, I feel like we are on the cusp of getting the product into the market and starting our journey to solve accessibility issues in health.
Are you ready to get into the hard questions?
Yup, fire away.
Why HealthNow? Why Health in general?
Honestly, this journey started for me a long time ago. I have always had a passion for health and subsequently once I became a health professional I instantly felt a drawing to make health more accessible in the community. Before I was exposed to the research around health barriers, I could already see it! People neglecting their health due to the cost or the prioritization of funds.
I started healthnow, because I believe that everyone deserves access equal to health, I want to make healthcare more accessible to more people and I want to reduce the pain of consumers around cost of treatment, rather than selecting a health outcome based on their bank account or ability to access the care they want and need, where they want to.
Further to the above points, I had also started to see and continue to believe that there are significant pricing challenges posed to medical organizations in the near future. Holding a C-suite role in a large multi practice rehabilitation center I can talk from experience that the cost of running medical companies are rising and health businesses are starting to struggle as they feel economic pressure. They know they need to increase their prices to sustain their operation. HealthNow is going to give their consumers the ability to elongate their experience of cost so the small increases seen are more palatable and don’t further add to the issue.
Wow, you really are passionate about this journey and your purpose.
- Without doubt, not only is there passion but I feel a sense of responsibility to this mission. I have acknowledged that there is a serious issue and now I am responsible to try and resolve it. We have the means, the connections, the knowhow and a team who is capable of doing great things. I truly believe we will make a significant impact on health acquisition.
Steve, I want to make a bit of a transition because as you mentioned this isn’t your first leadership position or attempt at growing a business. Can you give us a brief look into your background starting at high school?
- Highschool!? (laughing) that is a few moons ago now.
I know, but correct me if I am wrong, this is where you got your first meaningful leadership experience?
- Fair point, I went to a smaller high school, Birkenhead College, they had a great vision statement, “Where everyone is someone”. To be fair I probably was not the best student, but I had really great teachers and coaches around me that constantly pushed me to achieve more, which planted the seed of what’s attainable when you give everything to an outcome. As you mentioned I was appointed captain of the 1st 15. A position I really enjoyed, with a team that had solid potential. We ended up winning our division that year.
I then moved on to study Podiatry, where I was voted in as one of two student representatives for our year group. This was another valuable leadership experience as my first true exposure to governance, structure meetings and strategic planning for future execution.
Following the completion of my degree, I joined my long-term mentor Regan in Physio Connect, as the first podiatrist. To cut a 5-year story short, I bought into the business at the end of my first year where we had <12 staff across a couple of sites and together we have built Physio Connect to 108+ staff across 15 sites and 5 health industries. As a leader in this organization, I have been exposed to an array of experiences including the challenges of growing an organisation and implementation of corporate structures.
Having worked with you for a while now, I know that you are withholding a few stories of other things you have done.
Let’s change tack again, what does a day in the life of Steve look like?
- I wake between 4:40 and 5:00 am depending on how late I have worked the day before. I’ll head in to work at a coffee shop before 6:00 am. I like to start my day with an americano – usually at the taka beach front cafe, great staff and I enjoy catching the sunrise, which feels symbolic to me. Then I will usually have meetings most days between 8-12, then I’ll get some lunch in before I get into planning, execution or reviewing work completed in the afternoon. I usually finish in the office at about 6pm at which point I go to the gym from about 6:20 to 7:45pm this is my ‘Me’ time where i zone out and work out the days challenges before I head home to spend time with my partner or complete my remaining work items from 8-10.
Saturdays are usually my recharge day where I will do less functional work, more thinking and spending time with Chels.
Those are some pretty big days..
- Yea I know, I have tried to adopt a similar approach to my work life as some of the greats – I work more in a day which means i achieve more in each day and subsequently more in a shorter period of time. I am also extremely ambitious of what is achievable, and I experience immense dissatisfaction if I feel I am not helping myself to achieve the desired outcome.
Surely that can be challenging though? Like you must get tired or need a break?
- Sometimes I get tired and sometimes things do get hard, but I am lucky enough to realize that this project is a lot bigger than myself and that the outcome we are aiming for is going to have a significant impact on a lot of people and their ability to access health. That realization alone is enough to curb any feeling of letting off the gas to take a ‘break’.
Evidently, you have seen some early success and support. I am really keen to hear, What do you think is the one most crucial characteristic to success?
- I’m not sure I could put it down to one thing, there are three things that come to mind straight away.
First, develop a deep love for learning. It’s crucial to me that I am continually learning, developing and polishing my skills. Whether that be a book, audio book, interview, presentation or education meeting. Learning is absolutely vital to success in my opinion.
Second, Ask the questions others are afraid to ask. If you don’t ask you will never know and even if the answer is ‘no’ it is more likely than not you will gain some wisdom from the ‘no’ to create more yes’s in the future. I’ve also found that people are usually very willing to assist where they can. If you don’t believe me, look at the relationship between Michael Dell and Steve jobs.
Thirdly, be selective of the people you surround yourself with, build Networks and find mentors. Having high powered, intelligent and been there done that experience around will rub off on you. You learn how to communicate, pose questions and more importantly you will get to gain from their experience before you are in a position to experience a situation yourself.
Well I feel like we all have gained some insight to who you are and the drive that has started this journey. Thank you so much for letting us steal you away from your hard work. We all look forward to finding out more in the coming future.
Interviewed by Katelin Scott