Four Ways to Prepare for Healthcare Disruption

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Karen Utterback By Karen Utterback 
Former Vice President, Product Marketing and Strategy, McKesson (Retired)
Four Ways to Prepare for Healthcare Disruption

Sometimes, healthcare organizations forget how much they can learn from other industries. We tend to think of healthcare as a unique profession, but a recent McKinsey & Company report points out that as we battle today’s tsunami of change, we can learn from those who successfully emerged from such healthcare disruption.

In particular, I was struck by four actions McKinsey experts recommend to help executives respond rapidly to healthcare disruptions. They’re based on research into proven ways to help companies “get in front of the coming disruption.” More important, they make sense, given what we’re seeing today in the home care industry.

Think about each of the four points below in terms of your agency’s operations. What are you doing well, and what can you be doing better?

  1. Focus on today and tomorrow. This means having a clear vision of the future, including present and potential market segments. Which will grow? Which will become more profitable?
  2. Don’t reinforce the status quo. The authors point out that most companies allocate the majority of their resources into existing businesses rather than new ventures. During times of major disruption, this is a mistake. A strategy is only a theory until resources are allocated to it — words to live by.
  3. Understand your capabilities. To survive major disruption, your organization must be able to turn on a dime. Having a clear picture of what the organization is good at and what assets it can leverage in other areas is essential to increasing your capacity for transformation.
  4. Trim down. New market entrants are almost always more efficient than incumbents and have more favorable cost structures. Thus, McKinsey points out that in the post-reform world, administrative efficiency will be a must have, not a nice to have.

Transforming one’s business model is incredibly hard, but approaching it with a strong strategy based on those who have thrived amid healthcare disruption is a major step in the right direction.

Learn more about healthcare agency best practices for success.

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