In the first installment of a new monthly Q&A blog series, we’ll get to know the visionary men and women leading BioIQ and changing the healthcare industry. To kick things off, let’s meet BioIQ’s Chief Growth Officer (and avid Florida Gators fan) Kevin Kenney. Here, Kevin discusses strategies for driving growth amidst a changing healthcare landscape, his leadership style and where he sees BioIQ going in 2018 and beyond.
Q: As chief growth officer, what are your priorities in the new year?
My top priority for this year (and for every year) is to delight our customers and teammates.
A: My top priority for this year (and for every year) is to delight our customers and teammates. We have done an amazing job selling into the largest payers and employers in the U.S. Now it’s time to turn our efforts towards growing our relationships with these customers to help them expand their life-saving, high-value screening programs. In order to delight our customers, we must first delight our teammates and continue to build a high-performance culture. With growth and success comes growing pains and we continue to try and make BioIQ a great place to work. We may not always get it right, but I can assure you that we will never stop trying to get it right.
Q: You’ve held leadership roles at several healthcare organizations including Accenture, DaVita, Matria Healthcare and Ingenios Health, where you served as COO. What drew you to BioIQ?
The talent at BioIQ is outstanding for a company our size.
A: I have been fortunate to work for some great companies under some amazing leaders. The first thing that drew me to BioIQ was our ability to positively impact lives. Our CMO Josh Sclar will tell you that last year we saved 218 lives. These are people who could have died from colorectal cancer had we not screened them. Imagine how many lives we can save if we scale our solutions. We all have tough days, but we should be proud of the important work we are doing.
The second factor that made BioIQ stand out was the level of talent and the great people in the organization. The talent at BioIQ is outstanding for a company our size. Throughout the organization, we have smart, caring and motivated teammates who have each other’s back and make coming to work fun.
Q: How do you describe your leadership style?
A: As I mentioned, I have been fortunate to work with and for some amazing people and have tried to model my style by mimicking their traits. From Kathy Feeny, a former EVP at PacifiCare/United Healthcare, I learned about compassion and purpose. From Monica Weekes, a partner at Accenture, I learned to work hard and expect a lot from myself and my team. From Pat Cua, who currently serves as BioIQ’s chairman of the board, I learned empathy and how to engage with clients.
The one trait I work on the most is servant leadership, meaning the leader exists to serve the team. I learned this trait from Kent Thiry, chairman and CEO of Davita. As an executive at DaVita, we served our teammates who took care of our patients. By instituting this philosophy, Kent and his team turned a near-bankrupt company into a $14B, most admired company in healthcare. It’s hard to argue with those results.
Q: Who or what inspires you and your work?
Our team and our mission to impact 100 million lives inspires me each day, along with my family.
A: Our team and our mission to impact 100 million lives inspires me each day, along with my family. There are only a few times in my career when I can honestly say that I get to work with good friends and we have the ability to positively impact the lives of millions of people. That’s pretty cool.
Q: What is one of the challenges you face as chief growth officer and how are you tackling it?
A: The biggest challenge we face is maintaining an external focus on our customers’ needs. Too often we look internally at the work we have to do without thinking about our customers. This year, we have aligned our sales, client management and support teams around client groupings. This approach will enable our teams to be maniacally focused on delivering value to a specific set of customers.
Q: What are the most important strategic investments and innovations you’re making on your team right now that will pay off in the future?
A: We are making significant investments in people by ramping up our sales and client management team. In the past six months, we have hired several team members with a wealth of industry experience, including Sherman Sanchez, SVP of Sales and Business Development. The next thing we are doing is changing how we sell. We want to build long-term, value-added relationships, so we need to understand our clients’ pain points and craft solutions that solve their pain. At BioIQ, we are building trust, not just selling.
Q: Tell us more about your life outside BioIQ. What do you like to do in your free time?
A: Life outside of BioIQ is awesome. Thankfully, my wife, Heather, takes good care of our household and coordinates activities for our two boys Alec (11) and Andrew (9). Without her, life would be much more hectic. Weeknights are full of homework, music lessons (drums and guitars), karate, basketball, soccer, art class or tennis lessons. The weekends are full of sports games and adventures around the city or state. As you can imagine, I make my entire family write down their goals each year, so we spend a lot of time chasing down our goals. In 2017, we achieved our “12 for 12” goal. The goal was to complete a 5k race – as a family – every month of year. Getting a nine year old to run twelve 5k races is no easy feat.
Q: Are you reading anything interesting right now?
A: Sitting on my desk and nightstand are a variety of books and magazines ranging from Harvard Business Review, “Good to Great,” and biographies about Jimmy Buffett and Tom Petty. One way or another, this whole story ends with me and my wife watching the sunset from the Florida Keys.
Thanks, Kevin! Check back next month to get to know another BioIQ leader. In the meantime, you can catch up on articles Kevin has contributed to Home Health Technology News, Health IT Outcomes and McKnight’s Senior Living.