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31 minutes | 5 months ago
Q&A Part 2
Show NotesTo wrap the first season of Fixing Faxes Jonathan and Angela continue part 2 of listener questions. Diving into favourite failures, scary stories, emotional rollercoasters, and what we are reading/watching/listening to right now. Next season starts in late January 2021!Find Us OnlineAngela Hapke - @angelahapke - https://www.clinnect.caJonathan Bowers - @thejonotron - https://www.twostoryrobot.comCreditsProduced by Jonathan Bowers and Angela HapkeMusic by Andrew Codeman (CC BY 3.0)TranscriptAngela: [00:00:00] Kyla has now texted me and wrote on my Facebook and every, Oh my God.Jonathan: [00:00:06] Yeah, just toss it to the bottom.Angela: [00:00:08] Oh my goodness. Are you reading this? Are you reading what she's Oh my God. Who.She wrote that all these questions, then she wrote all of those are stolen from great interviewers, but are some of my faves for job interviews and icebreakers.Jonathan: [00:00:27] Oh, okay. Job interview questions. My goodness.Angela: [00:00:31] She's an HR specialist. That's why.Intro [00:00:33] Jonathan: [00:00:35] You're listening to Fixing Faxes a podcast on the journey of building a digital health startup with your hosts, myself, Jonathan Bowers.Angela: [00:00:43] And I'm Angela Hapke. So we're doing take two, not take two, part two, not take two part, two of listener questions. Now we're going to get in, like, we're going to get into some deep stuffJonathan: [00:01:02] Oh, really? Okay. Yeah. Oh, wait, this one's from you.Angela: [00:01:10] We'll put that at the end. Well, this is okay. Honestly, we weren't getting a lot of questions, so I decided that I was going to throw some in task.You,Angela, on entertainment [00:01:21] well, let's start with it then. Mine are just fun. Mine are just silly fun questions. I just wanted to know Jonathan, who are you listening to right now?Jonathan: [00:01:31] Uh, I'm listening to a lot of Raffi and, uh, artists by the name of Casper Baby Pants.Angela: [00:01:38] no, this is like some Baby Beluga going on in yourJonathan: [00:01:43] Yeah, We do some baby beluga. Casper Baby Pants is nice though. He's got a, he's got an album where he covers a bunch of Beatles songs.Angela: [00:01:50] that's fun.Jonathan: [00:01:51] Yeah. Yeah. It's good. Uh,Angela: [00:01:52] weird.Jonathan: [00:01:55] Yeah.Angela: [00:01:56] Okay. Um, okay. On our way to school, is usually when they listened to most of the music and I take Alex to school and she is very obsessed with the Tones and I right now, so like dance monkey, never seen the rain, lots of those. then I drop her off and turn on my own music and Oh, my musical taste has a far range, but today it was Weezer on the way home.So, yep. but I am more like, uh, like I like to have a lot of background music going on and it's usually very like coffee hose, acoustic chill, keeps my, like me. It can be from vibrating too high. Uh, okay. What's the last book or are you reading a current book?Jonathan: [00:02:47] I am. So I'm not sure why this is, but I feel like I am, uh, just boring, boring to answer these questions. I'm terrible at reading books because I only read them before bed and I immediately fall asleep.Angela: [00:03:04] too. This is why itJonathan: [00:03:05] I've. so I have, because it was taking forever to get through books. I decided to just not go back and try and reread what I was missing, like what I had fallen asleep too.So I just continue to plow forward. And so I've gotten through entire books without knowing who, who anyone is or what the main plot was. I just have read all the words. so currently I am reading, Dune, Because I'm like, I I'm excited about the new movie, Dune. I've never read the book, so I'm reading Dune.but, but reading it before bed, so I actually don't know what's happening. yeah.Angela: [00:03:39] That's hilarious. I feel that very, yeah, I am right there on that level with you.Jonathan: [00:03:45] Yeah. I think the last book that I read that I actually completed and was able to. Uh, I don't, I, I'm not sure it's because it takes so long. Like I read one page a night and then I'm out.Angela: [00:03:57] That's me too. And yes. Okay. I'm so glad that you're one of those people too, because like, like Jackie at work, she reads a whole book a day. Like she can just plow through a book.Jonathan: [00:04:08] What does she read? Is she the type of person that if you had an office to go to and have lunch, she would read a book at lunch. I didn't notice that of her,Angela: [00:04:19] I don't think so. No, I think it's like a, it's like an at home thing that she,Jonathan: [00:04:24] Wow. I'm a little jealous of that also. Not because that just seems like you'd run out of stuff really fast, but she's maybe just always has a book on the go.Angela: [00:04:32] maybe, I think the last book that I read a lot of, Books too, Alex she's into chapter books. we are on the Taya Stilton series, but I will say, parents out there, if you have kids that are at that reading age, two of the best books that we have read recently, or the One and Only Ivan, which was just recently made into a Disney movie.And number two, I cannot recommend this book enough is Wild Robot.Jonathan: [00:05:01] Oh, cool.Angela: [00:05:02] amazing. And there's now a second books, Wild Robot Escapes go out and get these books are incredible. Um, yeah. Okay.Jonathan: [00:05:14] your independent bookstore.Angela: [00:05:15] From your independent bookstore, please. Second hand too. what's your favorite TV show currently?Jonathan: [00:05:21] Oh, I am really enjoying His Dark Materials.Angela: [00:05:26] I don't even know this one.Jonathan: [00:05:27] It's the book, the books I've read the, have I read the books I've listened to? No, I have read the books and listened to the audio books. The audio books are amazing. So the Golden Compass you'd recognize the golden compass. So that's, that's that?I think there are three books, trio trilogy of books. so HBO and BBC have a, high production TV. Show, they have one season out already. That was last year, the year before, and now it's running season two and it's, I just, I really enjoy it. The audio books are fantastic. Probably my, my friend, Derek, who he's, he that's all he does is like he's plugged in and listened to audio books all the time.He has listened to that book. Dozens of times. It's really good. I agree. It's it's one of the better, it's one of the better books. I like it better than the Harry Potter audio books. it's, it's just fantastic and lots of fun, commentary on religion and, state and stuff. SoAngela: [00:06:20] Kate. Cool. I'm inJonathan: [00:06:21] the.Yeah, I would go, yeah, go listen to the audio book and then watch the first season and then listen to them all and then continue watching the rest of it. It's great. I love it. And it's very, I don't know what it is. I like those stories when it starts to turn to winter.Yeah. That's when I would listen to the audio book is like around this time of year.Angela: [00:06:40] Oh, like it'sJonathan: [00:06:41] that.Angela: [00:06:42] thing for you. Oh, I love that.Jonathan: [00:06:43] is, but I mean, at the season two has nothing to do with winter season one that takes place a lot in like the coldAngela: [00:06:49] Okay. Okay.Jonathan: [00:06:50] season two, doesn't it doesn't do that. So at the second book.Angela: [00:06:54] Okay. Okay. I'm just going to plug a Ted Lasso on Apple+. Oh, I am now on round two of watching it again.Jonathan: [00:07:04] Just restarted. So I made it through almost, and then decided not to watch it withAngela: [00:07:09] Right. Brad. And I watched the whole first season together. We are now watching the whole first season again, because the second season is going to be released until August next year.I believe Jason Sudeikis was saying any way. I have never rewatched a TV series ever. First one to do it with it is amazing. People. GoJonathan: [00:07:32] it's so it's so great. It's so it's funny. And in a way that isn't harmful to anyone.Angela: [00:07:39] At all. It's so gentle. It's so funny. It's so kind. It's so empowering. It's like, Oh, we love it. Okay.Jonathan: [00:07:49] to Ted lasso in my life.Angela: [00:07:51] Well, it's a vibe like he's a vibe.Jonathan: [00:07:54] yeah, yeah, yeah.Angela: [00:07:56] Well, we all want, we all want to Ted Lasso in our life. there, like, I don't know if that person actually fully completely exists.Angela, on being scared [00:08:06]Jonathan, what is the scariest thing you've everJonathan: [00:08:12] this is very clear for me to answer, but it's not what I like. Um, cause it's not one I chose for myself, Zach, being born. And having, the NICU nurses, appear through the walls.Uh, yeah, it was amazing. It was amazing. Like I could, I, part of me was, was like, okay, this is the scariest thing that's happening to me ever.But also the other part of it is like, wow, this is an amazing, this is an amazing thing that's happening right now because it just in a snap of a finger when the, uh, the doctor said, yeah, let's call the NICU in. There was nine nurses in the room. Like out of nowhere plus equipment, and they're just, they all had their jobs and they were just waiting for Zach to come out and then be handed off.And it was, it was, it was amazing. It was, but it was like the scariest, the scariest thing that I've ever experienced.Angela: [00:09:02] your PTSD and me right now, but yeah, I know. It's okay. yeah, I think for me, very, very similar Alex was the same way when she was born, they checked her O2 stats and called a code pink. And there was before I knew it, there was 10 people in that room with me and it was the scariest thing. So I worked in the hospital at that time when I gave birth to Alex.And there's three years between Alex and Nora. And I went back to work obviously, and was working at the hospital. And my, my boss, Tracy had said, Oh, we need to pop up to labor and delivery because we're doing a project or something. I'm going to show you something. We walked up and it got to the doors.And I looked here and I was like, yeah, I can't go in. And she was like, what do you mean? And I was like, I can't go back in there. I will, I will. I just wasn't ready for what hit me at these doors. And I did go back later that week after I had prepped myself. but yeah, scariest thing,Jonathan: [00:10:05] What would be the scariest thing you've chosen,do?Angela: [00:10:09] basically did choose to have a child. Um, I didn't choose that delivery. It's the scariest thing I've ever chosen to, probably a couple of things. And they're probably like, there's a couple of things. It would be after my third year of university, I decided that I was going to, just go to Lake Louise for the summer, not knowing anybody and just.Kind of change, mix things up. And that was scary. I knew nobody and I was going to a place that was out in the middle of nowhere and I was going to spend the whole summer there. And that was really, really scary for me. I chose to do that. And then I have to say, I'm doing this doing, Central Referral Solutions.Jonathan: [00:10:53] Cool. That's awesome. Yeah. the one thing that comes to mind is a so I'm a diver, I'm a scuba diver. and we went, night diving one time and went for one of our deeper dives. AndI got super narcedAngela: [00:11:08] I don't know what that means.Jonathan: [00:11:09] Uh, nitrogen narcosis it's they don't know exactly what it is, but, you basically get extremely loopy.people, people die, like they just, they start swimming straight down because they don't know what they're doing. So I got, super duper narced, uh, at like 130 feet, and, managed to signal my buddy and like flash at them and like do a little loopy sign on your head, which means I'm narced. and.Could manage to like think, but couldn't control my body in a good way. Like my, my regulator kept popping out of my mouth, so I would like stop. Yeah. Training was kicking in. I was like, okay, how deep am I? 130 feet feeling pretty. Narked we'll put the, put the breathing apparatus back in my mouth.check how much air I have left. Okay. I'm like half tank. Okay. We'll put the breathing apparatus back in my mouth and then, okay. Now I've gotta control my ascent up. because my buddy was like, Nearby, but it was like, I was trying to self rescue, and, uh, managed to get up safely and, uh, even managed to do a safety stop.And when I surfaced, the moment I got up and inflated by BCD, that was it. I was out of air. Yeah, it was super scary. I thought, I thought, I thought, I thought I might die. but was it, but it's the weirdest experience because I could think clearly, but I couldn't, I couldn't behave properly. Like I wasn't, my body wasn't wasn't reacting the way it, the way it should.and then I just had a massive headache afterwards, uh, which was like, yeah. So that's the scariest scariest thing I kind of chose to do, but yeah.Angela: [00:12:47] Well, let's take some more questions now.Jackie, on being a founder [00:12:53]Jonathan: [00:12:53] Jackie Jackie asks, what's your favorite part of being a small business startup owner or founder?Angela: [00:13:00] I think for me, it's easy. It's the F it's. Uh, it's not easy. No, that's not what I meant to say. the favorite part, choosing a favorite it's easy. It is being incharge of my own schedule, being flexible for my family. and just feeling like I have ownership over what I'm doing yet. The flexibility to kind of. Make sure all the other, the other things in my life aren't totally falling. And I, I love, I love that. I have never had that when I've worked for like a bigger organization or a company before. And I, I love it. I love it.Jonathan: [00:13:44] we actually chatted about this, yesterday or the day before. Cause we were at, somebody asked us this. well kind of, anyways, my answer is, being able to work with exactly the people that I want to work with. Um, and like all of the things that you said, but also trying to provide that for the people on my team as well.So like having that freedom, having that flexibility, working with the people that you want to work with. it's yeah. Coming, coming in. Not that I go in, but like coming to work has never, everAngela: [00:14:15] No, no, I don't ever, I don't ever wake up in the morning and go, Oh, I have to go do that ever. which is so lovely.Jonathan: [00:14:25] yeah. Thank you, Jackie. That was a great question.Pam, on hindsight [00:14:27] Okay. Pam asks, is there anything you would change knowing what you know now regarding your business?Angela: [00:14:35] I like how she put in, in, in bracket regarding your business. And it was like, Oh, Pam, I have known Pam since I was a baby. She's my mom's best friend. and she, she's a, she's a lovely, lovely lady. Love her. is there anything I would change knowing what you know now. Where would you like me to start?Wow. Uh, so many things, so many things. I think there's a lot of things I wouldn't change. we've talked a little bit about that, like team. I think I have like my gosh, your team, my team, best ever wouldn't change any of that. what would I change knowing? I know now. I have to think about this a little bit.Jonathan: [00:15:19] I would change very little.Angela: [00:15:21] Well, Lottie, freaking duh.Jonathan: [00:15:25] I mean, I, I think that there's, there's even in all of the mistakes, it just feels like it's just shaped the way we are and I like where we are. And so to go back and try and monkey with that feels like, you know, wishing for more wishes, kind of, like,Angela: [00:15:42] Okay. I like that. I could say the same thing too. That's true. I think the only thing would be, I would, I would, have done more as a team in person pre COVID. Had I known what the hell I knew now, like now that COVID is headed what we're doing now. I think I would have, I would have sauvored that in-person team work a little bit more.Kendra, on rollercoasters [00:16:05] Oh, ms. Kendra Hapke. It's my sister. How do you avoid getting overwhelmed with the ups and downs of the financial risk of starting your own company?Jonathan: [00:16:20] I don't.Angela: [00:16:23] I don't either. I don't avoid getting overwhelmed. I think, I think actually as humans, we avoid a lot of these, these types of feelings, like being overwhelmed or being, extreme, extremely happy, extremely sad. we avoid disappointment. We evoke void over whelming. I've tried not to avoid those anymore and.Because there are massive lessons to be learned with the ups and the downs. It has been a roller coaster owning your own company. A startup, a tech startup is a freaking roller coaster. I can go from one minute being like, this is the best thing ever to the two minutes later going, I don't know what the hell I'm doing.And, there's something to just feeling all the feels, you know, me. I loveJonathan: [00:17:14] Yeah. Uh, yeah, I don't, I don't know that I guess trying to put, put yourself in a situation where the financial risk isn't as, as risky, right? Like if you can save up,Angela: [00:17:29] Even that sounds a little bit boring. I know that sounds crazy. I know yet. Yes. Like being able to maybe be on your second startup or something like that with a little bit of money in the bank. Oh yeah. That'd be amazing. But you only get there byJonathan: [00:17:45] Yeah. Yeah. Yep. Yeah. I don't know. just be careful and try not to have a panic attack when you're driving home from Kelowna, outside of Falklands.Angela: [00:17:57] yeah, find a good therapist. They help a lot with those. Said panic attacks. We should go into that one day. Jonathan that's we should talk about, talk about being vulnerable and talking about mental health. I think mental health as a founder is like, we need to all talk about that more and more and more. So our fellow founders don't feel alone.Kendra also asked if you could go back and give yourself one piece of advice before you started up your company, what would it be? You know what mine would beJonathan: [00:18:34] No. Yeah. Oh yeah, absolutely. Start, start sooner. And maybe. Ship a little sooner to the, one of the things that I've let the, the phrases that I really like that I've learned, over the years is, the ship is very safe in the Harbor, but that's not what it was designed to do.Angela: [00:18:56] was designed to do.Jonathan: [00:18:57] so yeah, start sooner.Absolutely. Even, even little things like just creating those, creating that, that habit. Is is really helpful. Like even if, even if it's just like, just slowly picking away at it, like all that stuff kind of adds up.Angela: [00:19:13] Yes, it does.Kyla, with many questions [00:19:16] Kyla Lawsen. She sent a PA um, multitude of questions. I love this woman. She is so wonderful, so inspiring, so amazing. And she has so many questions.Jonathan: [00:19:33] She has asked for an entire episodeAngela: [00:19:35] has asked for a full episode on culture. Kyla, you might get your wish,Jonathan: [00:19:43] not today. Let's not do an entire episode ofAngela: [00:19:45] Nope. Nope.Jonathan: [00:19:47] let's do it. I think we should.Angela: [00:19:49] Love to do that. So we're going to save a few of Kyla's questions for that episode that we're going to do on culture.I think that would be, amazing. She's asking some great questions here, so I'll go. What kind of skip down? she asked, how do you balance the day-to-day grind with thinking about what's next one year, three years, et cetera, down the road.Jonathan: [00:20:12] That's a goodAngela: [00:20:13] That's a great question.If somebody could answer that for me, that would be wonderful.Jonathan: [00:20:18] what's the, what's the cheat sheet for this? How do, how do you do this?Angela: [00:20:22] I know for me, especially recently, so we are kind of we're closing in on what I kind of call like year one of Clinnect, because it was about January, February that we started, dev efforts on Clinnect. And I'm finding this time as a very. reflective time. And so I find majority of my day is the day to day stuff.I'm worrying about operations and things like that, making sure my team is well supported, et cetera. I've actually had to start carving out time. To figure out what is Clinnect look like in the next one year, three years, et cetera. I'm not doing a very good job at carving out that time is what I found.Um, and I think I need to, more, I think the problem is I am carving out pieces of time, whereas I should just now carve out days. Of time and, normal in, in non COVID times, I actually probably would have just gone away for like a few days to, you know, like retreat, like, go away to figure this out.And so now I'm trying to figure out how do I emulate that without going away? So stay tuned, Kyla. I don't know how to balance this right now.Jonathan: [00:21:45] Yeah. Um, I, the same, my answer's the same, although I don't, I don't really like that, like three years down the road, because that feels like it's just too far in the future. And there's so many things that could change between now and then that I don't really think that they'll think about the three years down the road that much.Angela: [00:22:01] No, it was talking to somebody and they talked about their five-year goal. And I was like, Oh my gosh, should I get myself one of those, like a five-year goal?Jonathan: [00:22:09] Yeah. Just go down to the five-year goal store, buy one off the shelf and yeah.Angela: [00:22:12] that one looks good. I'll take that. she also asks, what do you think will be the biggest scaling hurdles for Clinnect? The product is built to scale. We have built it too. Be scalable. It is currently scalable. What's our biggest hurdle for expanding Clinnect, or target market is finicky and to put it nicely. and it's, it's a lot of marketing effort. And we wanted a product to be fully scalable, but also one that I wanted, I think a couple episodes I go, I said, with these few new features, I would scream Clinnect from the rooftop and I'm, and we're there.We're very close to that now. And so then the next thing is screaming it from the rooftop. but I think that's going to be, it's gonna be a tough thing to do when we can't go into doctor's offices and. Put a face to Clinnect and show them how it works. So we're going to have to be creative.Okay. Here's a good one. This is for you,Kyla interviews Angela and Jonathan for a job [00:23:21]Jonathan: [00:23:21] Oh, now I see these are, these are, these are interview questions. Got it. I'm reading themAngela: [00:23:26] right? What's something that you believe that very few people agree with you on.Jonathan: [00:23:33] Oh my goodness. Um, well Vegemite is a delicious, delicious breakfast treat. Just put it on your toast. Uh, that's the one thing, um,Angela: [00:23:49] Accurately answered.Jonathan: [00:23:51] Um, I don't, I don't know. that's hard. That's hard to answer without reallythinkingAngela: [00:23:56] aboutJonathan: [00:23:56] Yeah. Like I would need a lot more time, but definitely, definitely like Vegemite. Like I like Vegemite. I think it's great.Angela: [00:24:04] no, it's so gross.Jonathan: [00:24:08] I don't know how to answer that. Like, I'm not even sure that that's a fair question to ask someone on an interview because it sort of sets them up to fail a little bit in that because you just gonna make something up.Angela: [00:24:18] Oh, interesting. Okay. I think. Well, as you know me, I think you should feel all the feels like. I think you should like be okay with getting really excited about something that may not work out and feel that disappointment. I think there's a lot of people out there that do not agree with that. I hear so many people say I don't want to get too excited because I don't want to be disappointed. And I'm like, what? Now you're now you're denying yourself. The excitement. For fear of disappointment.Jonathan: [00:24:54] I agree. I'm with you on that. See, that's the thing is I don't feel like I don't feel like my opinions are that, that, you know, uh, out in left field to, to otherAngela: [00:25:04] maybe, maybe that's not my field. Maybe I just,Jonathan: [00:25:08] Oh my God, these questions are hard. What's your favorite failure? What's your favorite failure?Angela: [00:25:13] my favoriteJonathan: [00:25:14] Failure orI don't know. I can only think of just failures that are funny.Angela: [00:25:25] Did you learnJonathan: [00:25:27] Oh yeah. Oh yeah, absolutely. Yeah. So once I, so one of my first, one of my first tech jobs, Was for a company that produced software for other large companies. And, uh, I was in charge of making this big financial report and this like automated report and I was testing it and I put poop. I put poop in the, in the financial report.just cause I was like testing to see that something was working and I just put the word poop in there and um, we ended up shipping it off. And so, so this organization that, that like, it was, uh, it was, uh, like a $400 million organization ran their financial reports and the CFO's like, okay, my, my. My, my, my financial report says poop on every page and like all the lines.And I came back, I was like, Oh shoot. I put that in. So the lesson there that I've learned, which I like try to stick to all the time is never use swear words or like things like that in, in try to always use like real, real words, real language. not even fake language, like just stick with real stuff.Angela: [00:26:33] my dream. My favorite failure doesn't have to be mine. Oh, Jonathan. That's fantastic. I love that story.Jonathan: [00:26:44] It wasn't harmful. Like it was really, it was really only, only one person that saw it, but it was, it was the biggest customer that we hadAngela: [00:26:55] Oh, that's fantastic. Oh, I love that. Oh, that can't be answered any better than that. Oh, what's some bad advice you have received along the way. Oh, I got one. Cause it wasn't that long ago. I remember when the idea for Clinnect first was born and I was told. Don't worry. And this was from like a mentor.Don't worry. If you create a product that works really well, What the hell was this person thinking? No, no, the government will not buy it from you.Jonathan: [00:27:44] that also kind of ignores the, like creating a product that works part.Angela: [00:27:50] it was bad, just really bad. Like, and I really actually remember walking out of that meeting, go meeting, going. I don't think that was very good advice. Okay. My gut was right. That was bad advice.Jonathan: [00:28:08] Oh, I like this question. You have a gigantic billboard that everyone in the world can see. What does it say? Wear a mask.Wear aAngela: [00:28:25] Oh yeah. And wear a mask. Ask me about Clinnect check out clinic, butJonathan: [00:28:34] I think, I think mine, I think mine would, would, would probably say, I don't know, like just, you know, just, I don't know. I don't know. Yeah. Just wear a mask. I want to get all philosophical, but I don't. I just, I wanted by that billboard, I want that billboard to exist. where I'm asking, just be a little gentler with the other humans out here.Cause just calm the fuck down.Angela: [00:28:57] the biggest takeaway I have. well, my husband and I both have from Ted lasso is curiosity overjudgmentJonathan: [00:29:08] Yeah, I like that. That is that from a later episode, I must not have watched that yet.Angela: [00:29:13] Maybe.Jonathan: [00:29:14] Yeah.Angela: [00:29:15] Yeah. Or it's just something very, very small, but like jumped out at my husband and I, I don't know, but we use that with each other all the time. If I'm getting like, like my little judgy hat on Brad will always go curiosityover judgment, Angela. Oh, it's such a good one because then I'm like, right.Damn it. Of courseit does. Good. Okay. We have reached theEnd of Season 1, talk to you in 2021! [00:29:42]Jonathan: [00:29:42] We've reached the end. We've reached the end. So we are going to take a break. So this we're going to consider this the end of season one of Fixing Faxes. We're going to take a break, tell sometime in the new year, probably January late January or so.we both want to spend a little bit less time recording and editing and thinking about things. and, uh, but we will come back inAngela: [00:30:06] exactly. It has been fun and we will be in your ears, Oh my gosh.
25 minutes | 5 months ago
Q&A Part 1
Show NotesJonathan and Angela asked for questions and listeners submitted all sorts of questions ranging from leadership, entrepreneurship, podcasting, and life. The questions were tough, amazing and required some digging deep to answer; along with many laughs.Find Us OnlineAngela Hapke - @angelahapke - https://www.clinnect.caJonathan Bowers - @thejonotron - https://www.twostoryrobot.comCreditsProduced by Jonathan Bowers and Angela HapkeMusic by Andrew Codeman (CC BY 3.0)TranscriptJonathan: [00:00:00] I think your renos have created a slight echo.Angela: [00:00:02] Are youJonathan: [00:00:03] it's just, it's just slight. It's fine. We'll leave it in. Cause I, I don't want to deal with it right now.Angela: [00:00:08] We could put like a blanket over my head or something?Jonathan: [00:00:11] that's how podcasters do it.They go in closets because of all the clothing and then crawl under a blanket. I'm not doing that because I'm not bringing this whole desk into a closet.Angela: [00:00:21] maybe I need like, a blanket tent to go over top of me.Intro [00:00:26] You are listening to Fixing Faxes, a podcast on the journey of building a digital health startup with your hosts, myself, Angela Hapke, and...Jonathan: [00:00:36] I'm Jonathan Bowers and this is our Q and A show. We've got questions from listeners and we're going to answer them. I'm very excited. Yeah. I'm a little disappointed that no one asked, like really obscure, odd, weird questions about. You know about things that are unrelated to podcasting or startups.Cause we've, we, you know, we're, we're deeper people than just this,Angela: [00:01:01] barely. Yes, no, no, we are. Yeah.Jonathan: [00:01:05] Uh,Angela: [00:01:06] I there's so many, I mean, these questions are wonderful and they're beautiful and they're going to get into some, some interesting, things here, but, yeah, there's no like wild or wacky questions for us. So,Jonathan: [00:01:18] and I apologize that my first response to getting questions was to criticize the quality that criticized the criticize, the questions I just realized that I'm kind of a poopoo.Angela: [00:01:28] you did you poo-pooed on them? I, yes. Thank you. Let's do it.Kaileen, on leadership [00:01:34] let's start with Kaileen because Kaileen jumped on this and I'm so proud of her for like, Jumping on it and putting it out there. So let's start with her. Yay. Yay. Kaileen and, let's jump into the leadership questions that she had. Okay.So she asked a few questions around leadership and she said that she'd love to hear both of us answer these questions. And the first one was what is a piece of leadership advice you think everyone should know? I know? Right? Just likeJonathan: [00:02:11] JustAngela: [00:02:11] head first, right into the deep end. Yes.Jonathan: [00:02:14] Ah, I don't know.Angela: [00:02:18] Kaileen authenticity.Um, we can, we can read all the leadership books that we want to, and we can, try and emulate all these wonderful, amazing examples of people out there. But at the end of the day, being authentically yourself is what I would just tell anybody. If you found yourself in a place where you're in a leadership position in your life, you're, you're doing what we do.We probably done something, right. So I would say authenticity.Jonathan: [00:02:47] I think there's a temptation to put on a facade, which does have, which does have its place. Uh, there is a, there's a place for that, but I think generally, yeah, being authentic, Yeah. And just being open, honest and maybe a little bit more vulnerableAngela: [00:03:03] Yes, please, please. We need more leadership with vulnerability, please. Can we do that? Yes. Okay. Her second question is what is a common myth about leadership you think we all need to let go of? You go first on this one.Jonathan: [00:03:20] Uh, Oh my goodness. So I haven't prepared for any, I haven't read any of these questions. I just copied and pasted these in, I haven't had time to think about them. a common myth. I don't know what, Ooh. I don't know.Angela: [00:03:33] Do you want me to go?Jonathan: [00:03:34] Yeah, I'm struggling. I'm struggling to answer these because I don't, I don't know. Maybe cause I don't read enough books, uh, to know like what are some of theAngela: [00:03:43] I just don't read enough books, period. Um,I think a common myth about leadership, but it's also not just about leadership. I think it's about, especially as startup, culture in general is this hustle culture that we have created. And we think being busy is the ultimate, Showcase of success.It's not at all. It's I think it's quite the opposite. Actually. I think having a lot of room and flexibility in your day, it makes, makes you a much better leader than burning yourself out.Jonathan: [00:04:23] Yeah, I'm I'm, I'm not gonna offer anything different than that. I'll just, I'll just agree with that. Like, I think that's totally true. even, uh, like Justin, Justin Jackson, he asked a question, we'll get to that, but he shared his calendarAngela: [00:04:36] I saw that.Jonathan: [00:04:37] a blank canvas with like two meetings in it.And I think part of that is because his business partner is away on holidays, but, um, regardless, he's still like, he's still, you know, that's, that's, his goal is to maintain that. And I, I, you know, I really like that. I look at my calendar right now and it is, it has very few holes in itAngela: [00:04:55] Oh, no.Jonathan: [00:04:56] stressful.but that's, I mean, that's just a personal thing. Like, like, I don't know that that's,Angela: [00:05:02] But isn't that what leadership is like? I mean, leadership is so personal, right? Yeah.Jonathan: [00:05:07] Yep. So yeah, I would agree. don't hustle so hard.Angela: [00:05:09] Don't. Slow down. Take a breath free up your calendar.Jonathan: [00:05:14] this idea that Kaileen and I are kind of batting around a little bit around, taking some of the lessons we learned from endurance training and applying it to, to work in life and things like that. And we we've all, we always say like this isn't a sprint. It's more like a marathon.And I think putting in the measures and practices that allow you to sustain a pace over the long-term is, I think what will get you there? Not, not sprinting. Cause you can't, you just can't, you can't sprint in this. You're just going to burn out.Angela: [00:05:45] no, I totally agree. Okay. Like that. Okay. Jonathan, what is your best leadership qualities?Jonathan: [00:05:54] I don't know.Angela: [00:05:56] Just made an awful.Jonathan: [00:05:58] I don't know. I don't know how to answer these questions. Like I really don't causeAngela: [00:06:02] think you need to have a little, like sit down with yourself.Jonathan: [00:06:06] I, I mean, so I think, I think I'm fairly authentic. I, um, I try to lead from the heart sometimes. That's, uh, that puts me in a, I'd make, not as great business decisions doing that occasionally. Um, but yeah, I think, I think I try to lead from, I try to, I don't always, I don't always succeed at that, but I think it's, I tried to lead from the heart.What is your best leadership quality?Angela: [00:06:34] Oh, I made the same noise. I know. Let's see. I, I don't know. I think. Oh, gosh, we should have had her team answer this for us too. Like a 360 review. I know what's my best leadership quality. I'm, I'm not sure. I think, you know, when I did mention authenticity at the beginning, I think that is a piece of it.I try and be actually pretty vulnerable leader. I let my team know. Maybe when I made some bad decisions so we all can learn from it rather than being, Oh, just trying to like you talk about facades. Oh my goodness. Like, I couldn't, that would just be too exhausting. So maybe that's my best leadership quality.I'm not really sure. Kaileen thank you for asking, but I okay.Jonathan: [00:07:19] Humility, maybe that's it.There's nothing. Nothing. You say nothing. So it's humility.Angela: [00:07:29] Yeah. Yeah, no. I did my, my, any Enneagram, have you heard about this?Jonathan: [00:07:35] Is this another, is thisAngela: [00:07:36] It's like a, basically a personality test is what this is. It's like very Myers, Briggs, ask. But, I'm, I'm an throw it out there. I'm an eight. And, um, I am very sure that, humility isn't top of like the best leadership quality of an eight we're we're very like anyway, anybody who knows what the Enneagrams are probably giggling right now.Yep.Jonathan: [00:08:00] I don't know anything about that.Angela: [00:08:01] Okay. What is a leadership lesson that you keep having to relearn or remind yourself of?Jonathan: [00:08:08] this one's easier for me to answer. Um, well, it isn't, it isn't, it isn't because, if I keep having to relearn it, I'm probably not, it's probably not sticking. but the one, I think that just because it happened again was, to just give people more freedom than, than you might be willing to. Cause they're there they'll surprise you.Angela: [00:08:31] Yes. That's that's a beautiful one.I'm going to jump on board with that one too. I do have to relearn that one a lot. Sadly. That's embarrassing toJonathan: [00:08:40] It's hard. It's hard because when you start from, like, when you start from one, right. When it's just, you, you're so used to doingAngela: [00:08:47] everything. Yes.Jonathan: [00:08:49] a way that you think that it needs to be done. And the way that it's always been done. And you just gotta remember to like, let go of that.Angela: [00:08:56] Oh my goodness. Yes. Yes, yes, yes.Hope, on podcast metrics [00:09:00] Jonathan: [00:09:00] from Hope, I don't know who Hope has, whose Hope? We know,we both know killing. Oh, hope. Yeah. Oh, sweet.Angela: [00:09:05] Hope just started a new marketing company. and it is called Hello Unicorn Marketing. Yay. Hope I'm super proud of you for starting your own business.Jonathan: [00:09:19] that's awesome. I didn't know she had done that. Good for you. Hope. so her question is I'd love to know how much reach your podcast episodes are getting, how much you measure this, any best practices on launching podcasts for the global market. I'm, I don't really want to share the podcast numbers they're not that impressive.Angela: [00:09:42] Hope, uh, reach. We have had listeners all over the world, like, Oh, all different parts of the world. So that's pretty cool. how are we measuring this? Well, maybe Jonathan, tell them how we use Transistor.Jonathan: [00:09:57] yeah, Transistor, the podcast hosting platform that we used has has analytics. they measure the listens to each episode. there's I think some problems in, accuracy in measuring. Podcasts downloads because like, you never know if someone asks you to listen to it, they may have just downloaded it.so it, it works really well. there's some somethings that I wish were a little bit more specific, because, so we can, I can see when somebody, when somebody binges the entire, the entire show, because there's a huge spike. Yeah. There's a big spike. And that, like, I think is a bit of a hint as to how low our numbers are, because thatstands out. so it's yeah. Tips on tips on launching a podcast for the global market. I don't know, like we we've, we've just new at this and we haven't, we haven't really managed to have the podcast grow a whole lot. it is picking up more listens though. Like people are, are discovering it and listening to it more, but it's not at a pace that is impressive.Angela: [00:10:57] It's a little bit like Clinnect not at a pace. That'sJonathan: [00:11:00] yeah.Angela: [00:11:01] yet.Jonathan: [00:11:03] Are podcasts like the startup we're starting is just sort of,Angela: [00:11:06] Trudging alogn. Keep on going.Jonathan: [00:11:08] My tip is, to not get too stuck on the details of the, like the mechanics and the format and all of that. Just start recording something and get comfortable with.Talkingand just, even if you throw some of those away, just record. Cause that's what we did. We recorded one,Angela: [00:11:27] One or two, I think, and then we trashed them. They wereJonathan: [00:11:31] them. One B we actually made a recording mistakes. So that's helpful to do a practice that we made a recording mistake. and then the second one, just,Angela: [00:11:39] Was bad.my husband said to me last night, what we're doing with this podcast is like flexing a muscle and, and it's absolutely, it's absolutely true. not only do you have like the podcasting muscle being flexed, but it has run into so many other parts of my life. I used to get really nervous standing up and presenting or talking in front of P peopole people.And I was like that.now even just doing this has helped a ton with meetings and. Talking about being able to articulate how I'm feeling, what I'm thinking, formulate my words around my thoughts and things like that.So I highly recommend exactly what Jonathan just said is just start recording. Just start trying if it's all junk at first, who cares? Keep going.Jonathan: [00:12:43] yeah, I've, I've found myself, Leaning on, I mean, part, partly just the equipment to set up. So it's really easy, but, when I need to communicate something asynchronously to the team that doesn't make sense to write, I'm just, it's so easy to just hop onto, hop onto a screen record and do that now. And that, that has been really helpful.Just like practically as a, as a, like you said, like a muscle that I can, that's been worked out. I'm like, yeah, I know how to do this. And the same way that, like, I can just go for a run, like I know how to do that.Angela: [00:13:10] I wish I could just say that. Okay. Um, I'll get there. Justin, on B2B vs B2C [00:13:16] Okay, Justin Jackson. So we mentioned Transistor already. Justin Jackson is one of the co-founders of a Transistor that we do use. And Justin decided to ask a pretty tough question here. Why did you decide to go B2B instead of going a direct to consumer health startup? I think we need to define what B2B is just for anybody listening that may not know what that is.Jonathan: [00:13:41] Bananas to Bango. Oh no.Angela: [00:13:43] But, um, it's, it feels like that sometimes, B2B business to business, um, it's a, it's a business, a business, product. So Clinnect is not direct to consumer, so meaning direct to a patient. but rather it is doctor to doctor. So B2B. so why did we do this? Who you want the long answer, the short Justin.Jonathan: [00:14:11] I'm sure he wants the long answer,Angela: [00:14:13] know we don't have time for the long answer and, butJonathan: [00:14:17] Listen to the whole podcast, continue listening. He listens, he listens to most of the podcasts that start up on his, on his platform. which is awesome. But I think at some point he's like, okay,I'm done listening now.Angela: [00:14:27] everything he'd just spent his whole 24 hours of his day listening to podcasts. the way the Clinnect started was it had started out of a, out of a, actually a government project and it was very much focused on a doctor to doctor referrals. And so that's it organically came as a B2B.I think though. What, and I'm just going to infer here. What Justin is asking is, is it sometimes maybe easier to do a direct to consumer health startup? And my answer to that would be hell yes. It is much easier to do a direct to consumer start up. I think when you're in the, doctor to doctor, sphere and you are not linked to the government, it can be, it can be a bit lonely out in those seas sometimes.And it's hard to do. and your, your accessible market is so much smaller than if you're just going to do a direct to consumer.Jonathan: [00:15:28] I would, I kind of want to push back on that a bit, because I feel like a direct to consumer, would be very hard because accessing that market would be very, very expensive.And, Like our problem doesn't really affect consumers in a way that they would want to pay for it.so the market doesn't even like the market isn't really there for what we're trying to do, but even if we were to be, you know, selling something that was more, applicable to a consumer, they're just hard to get. Like there it's expensive to market, to consumers and as a, maybe as a bootstrapped company, that would just not be possible.Angela: [00:16:03] I dunno. I feel like this is a much longer conversation.Jonathan: [00:16:08] Sweet. Well, let's turn that into a whole episode. Maybe we'll invite to ask to not Justin, come on to our, come on to our showAngela: [00:16:15] Andask us the tough questions. Okay. IJonathan: [00:16:17] Or actually just share some of the knowledge because I mean, he talks a lot about, uh, about markets and, you know, catching, catching the wave.Right. You know, and I think, I think what, what we've, what you've done is you've identified a problem that people are already paying for it. Right? Like fax machines exists. People are sending referrals are actually paying money to do this, putting energy into it. It's expensive and it's a pain in the butt.and so you're trying to. take advantage of some other things that are happening, to try and turn this into a, into a product that people would pay for it because they're used to paying for something like this.Angela: [00:16:48] Yeah, I think I'm just a bit of exhausted of trying to convince doctors that pay for all of this stuff anyway, to, to do it in a much better, easier way. And it can be exhausting. So I think that's probably why I was like direct to consumers ways or just if you have, I mean, it all depends on the idea.Like you say our product, our idea doesn't translate to a consumer product. At all it is a B2B. and that's why we went this route with it, obviously. but yeah, there's a, there's a, I think if you were to look at like healthcare startups as just a big blanket term, I don't know if there can be, there is a lot of arguments to be made to going to direct to consumer, but, well, we can talk about that another time we can deep dive into, Lindsey, on design [00:17:38] Lindsey.This is for you.What is yep. Specifically for Jonathan? What has the most valuable lesson in design that you've learned? Or what has, what has been the most valuable design lesson in design that you've learned and whyJonathan: [00:17:56] I, so I, I did think about this one a little bit, cause I wasn't sure. I think for me the most important or the most valuable lesson, is. I want to say empathy, but like that doesn't quite get at it. Like it's, it's empathizing with the user, but to the point where you deeply understand their problem.And I think what a lot of people think design is about is, making things look nice and it isn't, it's more, it's more around, what is the problem that needs to be solved and what's the best way to solve it. And part of that is also like balancing practicality with, timelines and the needs of businesses and, trying to get product out the door.but it, to me, it's, it's ultimately like empathizing with, with who you're designing for who the customer is, what problem do they have and what sucks about their experience, trying to overcome that problem or that, that struggle and. And just always sort of rooting yourself in, in that frame of mind rather than, you know, I'll just put some buttons and they can click on the buttons.That's not really what design is. It's more, you know, just, just thinking through and talking with people that are suffering from these, from these problems.Angela: [00:19:11] That's a really great answer. I loved that.Prior to working with you guys. I thought design was making it pretty.Jonathan: [00:19:21] Oh, Oh,Angela: [00:19:22] I had no idea I've learned so, so much with working with Two Story Robot and their designers. And, and now we have a designer on staff at CRS and, Design is so much more, so much deeper rooted in, like experiences and feelings.And then I ever gave it credit for.SoJonathan: [00:19:49] thank you. I'm glad to hearAngela: [00:19:51] that's it's yeah, that's such a cool one. Andrea, on job offers [00:19:53]so my, my friend, Andrea sent this one in Andrea Phillips. How do you decide you should stay the course as an entrepreneur or accept one of the many offers to join a team? Yep. That was exactly, exactly my response to that one.And I will tell you. So I've been, I've been working on Clinnect to and Central Referral Solutions for, three years almost full-time now. And, there has been offers that have come at me that have been. Very tempting. And it has been incredibly, incredibly difficult to navigate whether you stay the course as an entrepreneur or accept one of those offers, to join the team. At the end of the day.And I can just speak from my own experience on this cause. That's all I got is I am so glad up until now that I have stayed the course as an entrepreneur, it has given, it has allowed me to grow in a way I never would grow in a big corporate, or big organizational environment. it has also given my family the flexibility of my time that has been.Incredible cause I have a six-year-old and a three-year-old. Now, if you were to ask like my bank account, whether this was a good decision, that's another question mark, but it's, it's so much more than that. I have learned so much in the last three years that I wouldn't give up a day of that for, for an eight hour a day in a, in an office, in a big organization,I think.Jonathan: [00:21:43] What would you do with the money anyway?Angela: [00:21:45] What would I do with them? I do want my list. I know it's I think it's a super individual question. and, and the push pull is real, though. It is real every time an offer like that comes through the door, man, I think hard.Jonathan: [00:22:04] I don't get offers and I honestly, I'm not entirely sure why, like myteam gets regularly recruited. people are like trying to recruit my team and I don't get any of that. And it's, I mean, I used to think, Oh, it's because like it's because my profile is like not accepting jobs and, um, also listed as a founder.Um, and so maybe you're like, ah, he's on recruitable, but, um, now I'm wondering like, Oh, Maybe no one wants me.Angela: [00:22:31] I, no, I don't think that's it. I often get an offer with, so how is and see in CRS going? Yeah, like they're, they're very concerned that, and they're kind of like appealing to that side of me that is maybe, um, not like not in the, like the successful, amazing bucket yet. So they're like how much you come, come do this for while, but maybe because you're so successful, Jonathan, you'reJonathan: [00:23:04] No.Yeah. I, I, so I, I will caveat that with, I measure success in a very different way and it is not, monetary.Angela: [00:23:14] Clearly I do do.Jonathan: [00:23:16] Yeah. So I'm not rolling. I'm not rolling in dough. I mean like comfortable, like I'm not, we're not worried. Right. We were talking about, earlier about, just like the privilege of, if, both of us need to take lots of time off to deal with COVID orwhatever's going on,we're fine.Like we're not gonna, you know, we're not gonna not be able to eat and I'll be able to pay rent. but like, it's not like I can go and buy a mansion and buy a new car whenever I want also kind of frugal. so. Yeah. I mean, kind of, I like to, I spend money on my dumb, a dumb desk, but, um,Angela: [00:23:54] I like it. Andrea, thank you for that question. That it's an amazing question. It did hit, it did hit home for me pretty hard there. So thank you forJonathan: [00:24:02] Yeah, that's awesome.thanks, Andrea. all the questions we're going to do for today, but we've gotAngela: [00:24:08] Well, we gotJonathan: [00:24:08] to do more questions on the next episode. Outro [00:24:11] So thanks for listening to fixing faxes, building a digital health startup I'm Jonathan Bowers. And my co-host is Angela Hapke. Our music is by Andrew Codeman.Follow us on Twitter @FixingFaxes. Yeah. And we'd love for you to give us a review on Apple podcasts and share it with a friend and tell some folks. thanks for listening.Angela: [00:24:28] I'm reading through her questions and they're hilarious. I have so many podcast ideas period. She saidJonathan: [00:24:37] That's a great question.
31 minutes | 6 months ago
Show NotesLeaders are commonly praised for their creativity, Angela opens up about feeling less creative during COVID. Jonathan talks about finding a secret to increasing energy levels. They discuss the common thread of exhaustion, creativity, renovations, and alone time during COVID.Angela mentions GoCleanCo, she mentions a Twitter account however Angela actually found her on Instagram. At the end they mention Angela's daughter cut over 10 inches of her hair off and donated it to Wigs for Kids BC.Find Us OnlineAngela Hapke - @angelahapke - https://www.clinnect.caJonathan Bowers - @thejonotron - https://www.twostoryrobot.comCreditsProduced by Jonathan Bowers and Angela HapkeMusic by Andrew Codeman (CC BY 3.0)TranscriptJonathan: [00:00:00] I need help figuring out a topic.Angela: [00:00:02] please. My husband was no help.Jonathan: [00:00:05] Uh, uh, uh, I don't know what a proce pro Proust provost questionnaire is.Angela: [00:00:15] Like the writerJonathan: [00:00:17] I don't know he's talking to an uncultured. Um, man, I dunno. ProustAngela: [00:00:24] don't hide behind your gender to say whether you're cultured or not. Come on.Jonathan: [00:00:33] I don't know who provost is.Angela: [00:00:36] Yeah. It's okay.Jonathan: [00:00:40] judged.Angela: [00:00:41] No. Uh, yes, there was, um, a little bit of judgment there. It was fine. My husband was like this up.Yeah, perhaps there, he also did not know who it was.Jonathan: [00:00:54] Okay, sweet. So we're, uh, so far the two things we have in common is we don't know who that is, and we're both men.Angela: [00:01:02] Oh no, that is all true.Introduction [00:01:08]Jonathan: [00:01:09] you're listening to fixing faxes, a podcast on the journey to building a digital health startup with your hosts. Jonathan BowersAngela: [00:01:18] uh, yeah, I gave three options.Jonathan: [00:01:22] yeah. Talk through our meeting today regarding the attention screen and why we push hard on some designs. That sounds good. Staying creative as a leader during COVID. I'm not sure what you mean by that. Um, and doing some kind of questionnaire from a writer or a poet, did you say a poet or a writer?Angela: [00:01:39] I thought post was a poet and aJonathan: [00:01:41] You don't even know.It's like, yeah. You know, Hemingway. Oh yeah. I don't know what he's written. I have no idea. I know he's a person and he used to frequent, uh, CubaAngela: [00:01:54] Are you being serious? You don't know. Okay.Jonathan: [00:02:00] judge, all you wantAngela: [00:02:01] I'm not judging. Actually. I'mJonathan: [00:02:03] Vee who has not watched star Wars.Angela: [00:02:06] update. I am on the last one.Jonathan: [00:02:11] really like the, um, what is the last one?Angela: [00:02:16] Well, like episode nine, I am on episode. No, um, Oh, Skywalker returns. Uh, the rise of Skywalker. Skywalker is something. And I don't knowJonathan: [00:02:32] Have you enjoyed them?Angela: [00:02:35] I'm going to be very Frank and honest. The ones that were done in the nineties were very bad. God.Jonathan: [00:02:41] Oh, come on.Angela: [00:02:45] Chronologically the first three released were, were fun and cool. The next threeJonathan: [00:02:52] Oh, sorry. The nineties. Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. The prequels.Angela: [00:02:56] awful.Jonathan: [00:02:57] Ah, they're great.Angela: [00:02:58] Nope. And I'm quite enjoying the last three.Jonathan: [00:03:02] Good.Angela: [00:03:03] Yeah. I mean, they have very strong female, like lead characters. I'm loving Ray. I'm loving Leah. I'm loving. I'm just loving it.Jonathan: [00:03:15] Did you watch rogue one?Angela: [00:03:17] no, no.Jonathan: [00:03:18] What?Angela: [00:03:20] Was I supposed to, I thought I was supposed to finish all nine and then watch the what?Jonathan: [00:03:28] no.Angela: [00:03:29] Oh, okay.Jonathan: [00:03:31] You have made a mistake and now you must watch them again.Angela: [00:03:35] no. I will watch rogue oneJonathan: [00:03:38] you should watch rogue one though.You can watch it. It doesn't matter when you watch it, but you do need to watch that you don't need to watch him the solo, the solo. It kind of sucks, but you could watch, you can watch real quick. It's the best. I think it's the best. One of all of them.Angela: [00:03:52] Okay. Okay.Jonathan: [00:03:53] it's not even like the Skywalker saga Uh, so are we going to talk about this? Like w what, what do you want to talk about here?Angela: [00:04:04] No, uh,Staying Creative During COVID [00:04:08]Jonathan: [00:04:08] what do you mean by, um, staying creative? .Angela: [00:04:11] So the two things that I wrote down here were, um, today we had a meeting regarding, well, basically changing the whole look of clinic when the customer opens clinic for the first time. and the whole idea of transparency talking about like how we build clinics and how we make these changes in the app and things like that. I thought this might be a good one. So that's what I was thinking about talking about today because we really kind of.We threw up a design today that was like, and then we threw it out and I thought that might be an interesting thingJonathan: [00:04:52] Uh, yeah, sure. I mean, I love talking about that kind of stuff, I feel like that is related to the second thing that you wrote down here, which is the, the other point that you felt we might talk about, which is staying creative as a leader during COVID,Angela: [00:05:04] I think this is more of like a personal issue that I'mJonathan: [00:05:07] Oh, okay. Maybe we should get the wineAngela: [00:05:13] Maybe that is another day when we get the white. Yeah. I'm feeling really, um, I'm having a really hard time and these are like not big problems. Let's be very clear during this time, but I like to think of myself as a pretty creative individual and I am having a lot of issues lately with how to maintain that creativity.Um, which is so necessary for leadership. Um, and especially during COVID, I'm having a hard time trying to maintain any sense of creativity at all. I feel like, and I feel like it's actually being wasted away a little bit too.Jonathan: [00:05:56] Oh, there's a limited amount of this creative energy and it's dripping fromAngela: [00:06:01] Yeah. I never thought that it was limited. I always thought that you would maintain at least like a foundational creativity reservoir. And now for the first time in probably my whole life, I'm actually seeing it starting to drain and I'm a little,Jonathan: [00:06:19] that's that? That would frighten me, I think a littleAngela: [00:06:22] it does frighten me. It does frighten me and that's. Yeah. So those were the two timesJonathan: [00:06:30] Well, so that that's the creative drain. I don't know what else to call it.Angela: [00:06:35] that's a creative drain. It like that. Yes.Jonathan: [00:06:38] It makes me feel a little uncomfortable all of a sudden, because now, now I wonder yeah. If, if that's maybe that's happening to me, but I don't realize that as it is. And I think I'm being just as creative, but I'm actually just pissing everyone off because I'm coming, coming with like terrible ideas.I'm like, this is a great idea. And it's just, it's just me running on fumes, but I like my, the gas gauge isn't. Like,Angela: [00:07:03] It's notJonathan: [00:07:04] it looks like it's full. I'm like, that's fine. But it's like,Angela: [00:07:08] I'm just letting you tap it. It like a heads down to like a third laugh. And you're like, what happened there?Jonathan: [00:07:14] Oh, I hope that's not happening, butAngela: [00:07:17] that's not that that's not, I actually, I actually see it. Um, I draw, I draw sometimes or I, I have outlets and I'm actually getting worse. I was very concerned about, I drew something the other day and I'm like, well, why do I suck at this? No.Jonathan: [00:07:42] Oh, is it? I sometimes, I mean, I don't do, I don't draw, but I have other other little creative outlets that aren't, practical in any way. I mean, cooking, I enjoy cooking, cooking, cooking. I get creative in cooking, but they get slipped and I lose practice with it. And I think it's, it feels like it's, it's, uh, like a muscle that you have to keep working out.Otherwise it just kind of wastes away and isn't isn't as effective.Angela: [00:08:06] well, apparently, apparently it is. But I think in, um, just general, I probably always was kind of flexing that muscle or, or using that. And all of a sudden now I'm just like, wow. I feel like it's, I feel like it's. W, yeah, I feel like the reservoir is draining a little bit. And how like, and in times like this, these are the times that I would be proactive and take like a class or I would, um, do something maybe with friends and we would get together and do something creative and fun.Or I wa yeah, something like that, something very social, something where I'm being taught something. And I, I not a big fan of virtual learning. And so, especially during COVID, I'm feeling like. Or even just conversations like in-person conversations like that, sparks creativity and that sparks, you know, that kind of part of your brain where you think differently in different opinions and you hear different ideas.And, um, we can do that a little bit, but there's just that something missing with not doing it in person. And I'm, I'm feeling the drainJonathan: [00:09:25] Are you, are you an extrovert? Actually? I don't know. Like I S I. I want it from, I know you fairly well. I would I'm on the fence. Like I actually don't know.Angela: [00:09:35] that's what I am. I'm on the fence. I'm an introvert. I'm, I'm an extroverted introvert.Yeah. And I think it all comes down to what raises kind of your energy levels. And it's. By far being alone, like no doubt being alone for me. Yes. Which brings another point actually, which may all kind of come together is I actually said to Brad, the other day, I get what I'm feeling like no time alone.Jonathan: [00:10:08] Yes, there is none of that.Angela: [00:10:11] With small children and there's just an, Oh yeah. So maybe it's just energy and creativity and all these things are linked and I'm just not getting enough of that, um, lately. And it's, it's a bit frustrating, but it's also a bit concerning too, because I rely on that piece to lead a team. And I rely on that skill to build a product.And lately I'm, I'm, I'm not feeling that, um, Oh, it's sucks is what it is. I'm trying to read more poetry. That's the difference that I'm doing. I'm trying something different. I've never read poetry before and.Jonathan: [00:10:55] that? I, I have like, I mean, I, I F F. I'm not trying to judge you at all, but I just, that would not be something I would want to do.Angela: [00:11:03] I didn't think it was for me either. I've never read poetry before because of that. But now I found like this really beautiful, empowering feminist poetry that I am loving. And, um, I mean kind of like, this is something, something to do something additional, but it's still not going and doing like a painting class with a bunch of people and it's okay. It's not okay. But.Jonathan: [00:11:33] I mean, also there's no time to go do that,Angela: [00:11:36] I would make time. No, that there isn't, there's no such thing as no time. There is what you want to make time for and what you don't want to make time for. I firmly believe thatJonathan: [00:11:48] Everything elseAngela: [00:11:49] my finger out when I said that too, I wish this was like a video.Jonathan: [00:11:55] Even. So even if everything was the same, right? Like all of, all of COVID was the same and your life was exactly the same and all the constraints that are on you except for there was this. Painting class that you could go toAngela: [00:12:09] I would do itJonathan: [00:12:10] That sounds amazing. I would do that too.If there was the one thing. Yeah, there was the one thing that was open that's like we guaranteeAngela: [00:12:18] buddy. We'll do it.Finding Ways to Cope [00:12:21]Jonathan: [00:12:21] Yeah. Nevermind. That sounds awesome. I thought, what was the thing I thought I found? I felt like I found a secret somewhere recently. I felt like, Oh, what is this?This. It's gone obviously now, but well, so actually, um, it's funny. Cause, cause I had my, I did a COVID test on Friday, I think. Um, And so I, I was sleeping in a different part of the house and we kind of prepared for this. We bought this a Murphy bed that we set up downstairs, um, free up some space in the spare rooms that you, we can have an office.Um, and just, it just makes so much sense, but it it's our, it's our core and teen zone. It's in, it's in my office right here, like it's right there. Um, andAngela: [00:13:09] can work and sleep and be like quarantined. You were prepping for you toJonathan: [00:13:14] Yeah, there's a bathroom over there. Well, if, if Julie needed to come down and she could also yeah. Um, but it, uh, yeah.Anyway, so I was, cause I went, got my test cause Zach was sick, so he was home and um, I went and got this gut, my test. And so corn isolating downstairs, I've got the bed down and I'm just kind of laying there and. I'm like, I don't get this ever, like I am, I feel like I'm in a hotel. Like, I feel like I'm traveling somewhere and I'm just like hanging out by myself and it was, it was awesome.And it was only, you know, a couple hours until I fell asleep. Um, but I thought, ah, this is, this was, this was great. It's kind of, I feel kind of silly and a little selfish saying it, but,Angela: [00:13:55] No, no, youJonathan: [00:13:56] was nice. Oh. And I had a bath. I went and had a bath and it was, it was amazing. I just, I just laid I, yeah, I laid in the tub and I just, I just laid down.I had a bath. It was so great. It was so it wasn't fun, but it was like, it was just super, super relaxing. I wish I had, I had bought, I bought Zach some new, a bubble bath. Cause he ran out and it's, it smells really, really good. And I wish I had that before I had my bath. Cause I would have put that in because it's smells so good.Angela: [00:14:28] In, uh, September, uh, we were scheduled to go for our final camping trip of the year, uh, for two nights out at, um, Harold provincial park. And I remember at the time I was just, I was running low and I was exhausted and I did, I just didn't really want to go. And I said to Brad, I don't think I can do this.Uh, would you just take the girls and I could have the house to myself for. Two nights. And, uh, he, he wasn't reluctant. He was a bit like, Oh, okay. Okay. Because we're like kind of new to the whole tent trailer, camping thing. And I think he was in his brain kind of going through K how am I going to do this without Angela?There? And, um, he did, he did it, and they had an amazing time, but it was luxurious to have the house to myself for two nights. I was just, I loved it. And it was funny because so in less than a month, I T I turned 40 and, um, you know, everybody's like, Oh, like ho, or you can do anything for your birthday.How's this going to work this year? And I'm like, well, it's. Probably nothing's going to happen and of, so if I could just maybe have some alone time for my birthday,Jonathan: [00:16:01] Oh, other year, that would soundAngela: [00:16:05] Right. Some, some deep seated issues. I know, I know. And actually felt really weird saying it I'm like, is he gonna take that? And he actually totally. Yeah. Yeah. That's that makes a lot of sense. Right? Sounds nice. And maybe that's it. Maybe I am feeling a bit. Energy reserves along with creativity. And, and I have to like, be thankful to like, you know, your team and my team, because we do have such a, such a young, amazing team that brings a lot of vibrancy and energy.Thank goodness. Because could you imagine if it was like, just a bunch of us that were like, Oh, I'm a little tired.Jonathan: [00:16:54] I don't know. I mean, I have, I have a, I'm a pretty high energy person. Uh, I'm usually pretty the more animated one in any given meeting. Um,Angela: [00:17:05] But even we're tired. And we usually are like here, you know,Jonathan: [00:17:10] yeah. This week has been pretty exhausting.Angela: [00:17:14] Yeah. So it is, it is nice to have that young, if nothing else, enthusiasm to kind of like, okay, right. Yeah. Okay. This is why we're doing this. This is, you know, it helps lift me up a little bit in anyway. And they're feeling like this. I don't know. I wonder what as to what, like, what do you think other people are doing? I can't be the only one feeling like this.Jonathan: [00:17:41] Oh, I don't think you are. I think everyone's, I mean,Energy Hacks [00:17:43]Angela: [00:17:43] Are we just sitting in it or are other people finding like, you know, little, I hate the word hack or, you know, but are people finding like, what are people finding, you know, little pleasures and joys andJonathan: [00:17:59] Uh, I don't know. I would love a cheat sheet. Yeah. Like you said, like, I would love a hack to say, Hey, just do this thing and it's going to make you feel better. But I don't, I don't, I think for the same reason you don't like the word hack. Cause I don't think they actually work.Angela: [00:18:12] it's because it's like, it feels like this temporary thing. That's just kind of like a band-aid, butJonathan: [00:18:17] Yeah.Angela: [00:18:18] I don'tJonathan: [00:18:18] don't know.I don't know. Um, well, I'm gonna more baths in my, in my downstairs bath, the bathroom, which is where I actually, where I shower anyways. Like it's, it's,Angela: [00:18:29] It's your private bathroom?Jonathan: [00:18:30] it's my private bathroom. It's all the way downstairs, but it's got all my workout stuff in there. So that's where I go and shower. And then we've spent some time sort of making it feel nice and then making my desk and my, the downstairs space feel nice.So it feels like not the basement. Um,Angela: [00:18:46] and that's, well, nobody can see this right now, but that is exactly why I have started to do what I'm doing to my office. So right now Jonathan's looking at me through zoom with a patched up dry wall, a wall behind me.Jonathan: [00:19:02] first glance, it almost looked like, um, some kind of abstract painting in behind you. And then I see it on the other wall and realize it's spackle.Angela: [00:19:12] It is. Yeah, it is all the places where I took, um, all the shelving down. And I think that was one thing I didn't like, I was feeling this creative drain, this energy drain this week. And, um, I have been known. To get out power tools. When I am feeling like this, or I'm feeling slightly angsty in life, or I'm just need to get some stuff out.And it felt really good because I took out like the, the drill, because I was not taking out the screws with like a little screwdriver. I was like, no, no, no, no. And, um, and I'm going to repaint it and I'm going to make, you know, this office a little. More because it is the same basement I want to make. I want to have a nice feel to it and things like that.So,Jonathan: [00:20:01] I want to show you like I've I I've spent, um, I mean, I don't spend a lot of time doing it, but I've spent, Oh geez. When did I start? Months ago, anyways, tearing apart my space as well. Like I did the same thing, took the shelves off, realized I had a whole bunch of holes in the walls. So I patched that up and then Julie's like, wait, you can't just leave him patch.Like, that looks terrible. So we repainted and, um, I've spent a bunch of time sort of figuring out my desk. Um, I got some new shelves, uh,Angela: [00:20:29] You've spent like a month figuring out your deskJonathan: [00:20:33] Uh, Oh, no, I've spent, I've spent more than a month figuring out my desk and I spent way more time than I should have figuring out this, just monitor arm. Um, the, the hours I spent wasting, like. Deciding between the two different things to two different brands I wanted to get. And the difference was like a hundred bucks.Um, was, yeah, I just went with the more expensive and why didn't I do that from the beginning, but I got, I got new shelves and amounts at that and I sort of rearranged some stuff and cleaned up a bunch of things. And my next, my next project is, um, The, the piece of the print it's like from winners, it's just garbage this thing on the wall.Um, I'm gonna take that down and do something with it, but there's, um, it's hiding the electrical panel and the cable box and some other stuff behind. SoAngela: [00:21:21] don't want to just take itJonathan: [00:21:22] no, I can just take it down, but I, and so that's actually one of the things that I'm. Like trying to stay creative about it. So I'm trying to think of a solution for that.I don't have the time to learn how to do some carpentry, but I think I figured out what I want to do. And then I'll just hire a Julie's cousin, cousin's husband to come in and do that for us. And then, but now I'm going to, I'm going to make, uh, art print for myself, I think, um, and get that printed. And so, and then I've also been documenting my whole process or the whole.The whole, the whole thing. Yeah. And I've been, I've, I've been kind of enjoying that. Like, no, one's really interacted with me on it. A couple of people have asked me a couple of people have asked me about the like Mount that I have my camera on. Like, what's that? And I sort of talk about it to them and that's, that's kind of fun.And so that, that has satisfied this creative urge in me in some ways that other things that I just don't have time to do, um, Would would normally fill that gap. And so, so I've been enjoying that. Uh, but it's not like it's,Angela: [00:22:23] I feel like they're placeholder stuff. I know.Jonathan: [00:22:25] areCleaning The House [00:22:25]Angela: [00:22:25] Yeah. And I, and so there's I follow, I followed this, um, Twitter accounted skull. It's called go clean co and it's this, this woman. Have you heard about this? Okay. So she has a cleaning business at a Calgary. And when COVID hit, she obviously couldn't go into people's homes and clean their homes anymore.Um, so she took to Instagram and just started showing people how to clean their homes, because she knew that like the whole home cleaning thing was becoming a bit of a thing. People were finding therapy in it. Um, this woman has over a million followers now and has like, she, she took. Off, she now has her own, I mean, what is she doing now? She has, she sells like little, um, down downloadable PDF. Um, like the laundry handbook, the cleaning handbook, the like this different handbooks that you can get, um, that help you to teach you how to clean your own home.Jonathan: [00:23:28] I think that's great. There's a lot, like we we've picked up some, some tips off the internet and that has made things a lotAngela: [00:23:34] Oh, I've I've I follow her now and I love it all. And like now all of a sudden Brad Knight, like all her shoes are cleaned and all our, you know, like my window sales.Jonathan: [00:23:44] cleaned your shoes. Not just organized them, but like clean toAngela: [00:23:49] full on cleanedJonathan: [00:23:50] That'sAngela: [00:23:51] And my daughter she's, if you are a parent and you have kids that have really gross shoes or those fricking thermos, um, lunch kits that look like they've been thrown in a mud puddle,Jonathan: [00:24:08] Yeah.Angela: [00:24:09] this woman, she's got some hacks for you. it literally involves tide, bleach and water. But anyway, I think like it's, it's a Testament to the fact that people are fine. We're trying to find anything that is giving us like little bits of joy these days. And it's like, whether it's cleaning your daughter's running shoes that are disgusting or, you know, patching walls and making new home offices, I just, I don't know how sustainable this all is, but.I guess finding bits of joy right now was hoping my office renovation will give me a little bit of a creative spark that I'm hoping to get.Jonathan: [00:24:53] it? Uh, my, my office, I mean, it wasn't really a renovation. It was just like, Oh, a coat of paint and some new furniture and cleaning. Yeah. But it, it, I was surprised at how, um, How much more enjoyable it has made this space for me. Um, cause I've never like, I, it was never a primary workspace for me. It was always just like I occasionally worked from here, but usually it was just to come down and do some stuff on the computer, like not actual work.Um, and so it wasn't, wasn't great. I had just stuff all over the place. And so now that it's clean I enjoy coming down to the space and I enjoy the ritual of sort of like putting it back together. Uh, like sort of getting it ready for the day and, and, and sort of putting it away for the day.Um, not so much putting it away for the day, cause I just kind of leave. Um, but, but sort of getting it set up for the day I enjoy. Um, and I just, I love that. Like, because honestly, because we get that Murphy bed over there, it has really lightened up the room cause it's all white.Angela: [00:25:50] Oh, nice. Yeah.Jonathan: [00:25:51] and we've got lots of we've actually got, despite being in a basement work, um, Uh, ground level.So, um, there's a sliding door and a big, I have a big window here, so there's lots of natural light that gets in here. And with that big white, white thing, it's just catching all this light and making it just feel really bright in here. And so I, I like, I like coming down here right now, so it's,Angela: [00:26:13] And that's huge too, right. To like look forward to it. Um, the interesting part I thought about when I was redoing the office that I never would have thought about pre COVID is what's behind me. And so right now it's patched walls, but I have, I have like a really fun idea of what's gonna go back there and it's not ending. Like I say pre COVID, I would have been like, well, I don't give two hoots kind of what I don't see behind me, but Oh my goodness. Run so many zoom calls. We're going to continue to be on so many zoom calls after, um, you know, the second wave hitting that I was like, okay, I'm going to have a really lovely background, like, you know, shelves with books and things like that because I get on all these calls and it's, it's so funny, you know, just.The impression that you get of somebody with what is behind them.Jonathan: [00:27:15] yeah,Angela: [00:27:16] And then I have to say the VR, like the virtual backgrounds.Jonathan: [00:27:20] Oh, I hateAngela: [00:27:21] I don't like them. I'm like, what are you hiding?Jonathan: [00:27:24] get why people are doingAngela: [00:27:25] Oh, I totally do too. ButJonathan: [00:27:26] but I think they look, I think they look kind ofAngela: [00:27:29] I don't like them. So I'm.Jonathan: [00:27:31] I try not to be too judgmental because,Angela: [00:27:33] Because we're all in like a really hard situation here with working from home for like the first time ever.Jonathan: [00:27:41] yeah. But I mean, like I was on a call on earlier in the week and he had a, uh, the gentleman, um, facilitating the call.He had his virtual background on and, uh, I can't remember. Why, but he turned it off to sh to show like the mess behind, but it was far more interesting. Like he had this big, a star Wars Lego thing in the back, like he was, he was in like a, like a workshopAngela: [00:28:04] It was Andrew wasn't it.Jonathan: [00:28:06] Yes. Oh yeah. That's right. Yes. Cause he, he listens to the podcast.That's right.Angela: [00:28:11] He was so excited to put a face to the voice for you,Jonathan: [00:28:15] yeah. But it was, it was neat because he had all this like cool stuff in the background. And I w I was much more interested in seeing that then this sort of like, kind of weird fuzzy thing around, around the, the, the, um, the edges of someoneAngela: [00:28:29] I know, I know. Yeah, he does have very cool stuff. Lots of,Jonathan: [00:28:33] Well, uh, uh, Hey Andrew, thanks for facilitating a great call for us this week. ThatAngela: [00:28:38] absolutely. We both took part in two separate calls. Mine was today. Yep. And they were really good.Jonathan: [00:28:46] yeah, it was good.he's a listener.Angela: [00:28:49] Here's the listener. Yeah.Jonathan: [00:28:51] Why don't we appeal to other listeners to send us questions? No, one's sent us any questions.Angela: [00:28:58] We asked you all to send us questions.Jonathan: [00:29:02] But even Andrew didn't ask a question. We had him on, uh, we had him on a, on a thing he commented about knowing our, knowing what he knew, my voice. I hadn't met him before. He knows you obviously. Um, but, uh, he didn't have a question. Maybe, maybe we've just answered everyone's questions. I can't believe that's true.Angela: [00:29:21] I have some friends that have he texted me, um, about listening to the show. And I was just wondering if there was any questions in there?Jonathan: [00:29:33] If there are, you should write them down and then we can, uh, we can answer to, okay, well, nextAngela: [00:29:40] No, it would be, it would be fantastic. Um, and a couple of episodes ago we talked, we asked people, you know, give us, uh, give us, uh, a DM or a tweet or something like that. And let us know that you're, you know who you are, where you're from, what you like about the show, something like that. And any questions I want questionsJonathan: [00:30:02] Yeah.Okay.Angela: [00:30:03] also a shout out to my daughter who cut over 10 inches off of her hairJonathan: [00:30:09] I saw thatAngela: [00:30:10] and donated it to wigs for kids, British Columbia, her beautiful hair is going to hopefully. Make a beautiful wig for some kid going through a tough time.Outro [00:30:26]Thanks for listening to fixing faxes, building a digital health startup. I'm Angela Hapke. And my co-host is Jonathan Bowers music by Andrew Codeman follow us on Twitter at to fixing faxes.We would love it. If you give us a review on Apple podcasts or wherever you review podcasts. Thanks for listening.Jonathan: [00:30:45] and a tweet, even just like a, HeyAngela: [00:30:48] it just kind of feels like talking to avoid. SometimesJonathan: [00:30:52] Uh, like the two of us talking to a void, right? Yeah. Not you talking to a void.Angela: [00:30:59] to avoid, and you're the voice.
31 minutes | 6 months ago
Jonathan shares a personal experience regarding a specialist referral, it provides an opportunity to refresh on what referrals are. In this episode Jonathan and Angela refer to the Medical Post, September 2020 issue. Topics span personal experience, referral etiquette, lost referrals, and what is really expected of the patient in the process. Find Us OnlineAngela Hapke - @angelahapke - https://www.clinnect.caJonathan Bowers - @thejonotron - https://www.twostoryrobot.comCreditsProduced by Jonathan Bowers and Angela HapkeMusic by Andrew Codeman (CC BY 3.0)TranscriptAngela: [00:00:00] but your, desk moves up and down. Is that an issue?Jonathan: [00:00:04] But Nope, no, no, it's not because I'm Mount to everything to the desk. Not, not to like to the wall or anything.Angela: [00:00:11] got it. So it moves with it. Okay, that makesJonathan: [00:00:14] Like watchcheck this out. this is sometimes how I come into meetingswelcome to the meeting.Angela: [00:00:25] this is so weird. Your head's just slowly rising up from the bottom of the screen.Jonathan: [00:00:33] yeah, just appear. I just,Angela: [00:00:35] Well, you don't, you don't appearance. Like if you were in PowerPoint, it would be the slowest, The slowest, like fly inJonathan: [00:00:44] yeah. I fly it from the bottom. Yeah. Real slow.Intro [00:00:48]Jonathan: [00:30:23] shout out to Justin Jackson and, John Buddha at Transistor FM.You're listening to Fixing Faxes, a podcast on the journey of building a digital health startup with your hosts, myself, Angela Hapke.And I'm Jonathan Bowers. I just got back from taking Zack to an eye specialist, a referral that we had from our GP or family doctor. I'm not sure what the distinction is between a GP and a family doctor.Angela: [00:01:11] There is a very clear distinction between, GPs and family care providers. But that is a topic for another time.Getting a Referral to a Specialist [00:01:19]Jonathan: [00:01:19] Okay. anyways, so, Zach, had a bit of a traumatic birth and suffered some nerve damage to his eyes. And so for the first the many months of his existence his eye didn't open quite correctly and that was concerning. and so we got referred to a specialist. Now the specialist did not let us know that they would much rather us go to a different specialist because that specialist is capable of doing the actual surgery that might be necessary. Didn't phone us, didn't find the GP. So we just phoned them many, many months later asking what's the status of this? And they said, Oh, it needs to go to a different specialist. And so we then had to go back to the GP. The GP, sent the referral to the new specialist and, anyways, it was kind of a pain in the butt. And the only reason why he caught it was because Julie phoned the specialist's office and said, I thought I would have heard from you by now and nothing. Nothing happened. anyways, like medically everything's fine. His vision is perfect. I mean not perfect. It's it's good. he has, he has, what's called a Horner's I'm saying this right Horner's syndrome, which, apparently causes people to sweat differently.Angela: [00:02:34] Interesting.Jonathan: [00:02:35] Um, but yeah, I don't really know much about it. Either. A friend, a friend of ours has it. and as an adult, like we, we had no idea. but anyways, yeah, the, the eyelid, has recovered well. It's, it's very difficult to see that one eye lid doesn't open quite as much as the other. It's more apparent when we look at him in a mirror because it's it's, the assymetry is wrong.Um, and his pupil, his pupil is performing well. There's no, there's no damage in the back. He's not going to need glasses. So we're pretty excited, but it made me think of this whole Clinnect journey and referrals and having to manage, having to manage it ourselves to somedegree, to make sure that it was happening.Angela: [00:03:13] as a father or a parent of a patient, this is a tough one. So you, so your primary care provider sent a referral, they sent a referral to a specialist that, it was probably from the primary care provider's perspective, an appropriate specialist to send it to.Jonathan: [00:03:33] and it is, it is actually, so we went to the, to the, to the specialist that can do the surgeries. We've gone to see them twice. And then at the end, he's like, there's no need for surgery. Let's send you back to the original specialist because that's a much easier drive. And so then we'd been going and everyone's been great.It's just the, just the logistics piece that has sucked. So everyone made the right, like it was, yeah, it was the right referral to make.Angela: [00:03:56] Yep. It was so their primary care provider made, from their judgment, the best call to a specialist that they could have made. Yeah. That communication though, from when that specialist received that referral and saw that referral as, possibly appropriate but given the, the, the circumstances with Zach, I'm thinking that maybe there would a surgery would be needed, that that referral then should have been either forwarded to the surgeon with the indication back to your primary care provider that this referral has been forwarded to the surgeon, or that specialist should have.Gone back to your primary care provider and said, actually in review of this patient, we think they're better off to be seen by a surgeon first just to maybe rule that out. Which was eventually what happened. Yikes. And how long, how long did you wait?Jonathan: [00:05:03] Oh, I don't remember. It was, I want to say a month or two.Angela: [00:05:09] So we're talking about and how old is Zach?Jonathan: [00:05:12] How old was he? Oh my goodness. Oh,Angela: [00:05:14] would have been only,Jonathan: [00:05:16] One thing I've learned is that having a child, you don't remember anything about anything?Angela: [00:05:21] that's true. Welcome. Welcome. Welcome to Parenthood.Jonathan: [00:05:25] he was quite, I mean, he was quite young when we took him the first time.Angela: [00:05:29] So a baby,Jonathan: [00:05:30] Yeah. Oh yeah, baby. I mean, he's not even two now. He's, he's under two and this has, we've done this for, we've gone five times, I think, to the, to the different specialists. and each with like several months in between, soAngela: [00:05:46] Which that part is pretty typical, right. That, that follow up piece. but that initial piece had you guys not phoned, what do you think would have happened?Jonathan: [00:05:55] Honestly, I'm not sure. I think it would have just, I think it would have just gone on forever and we would have eventually phoned and been like, what the heck? Like I thought we were supposed to have an appointment.Angela: [00:06:04] right. Or the next time maybe that doc went to the primary care provider on an, like an annual check for something you might've mentioned it. Oh, by the way, we haven't really heard back from that eye specialist yet.Jonathan: [00:06:14] Yeah, I think, I think the longest it would have taken was, yeah, it would've been three months because it would have been the next checkup which would have, which would have happened three or six months later with our, with our, primary care provider.Angela: [00:06:26] And so then once you, once you got the referral to the right place, and this is with the surgeon, how quickly did you guys, kind of seeJonathan: [00:06:33] well, the involves some try some driving. So it was sort of a little bit, half on us, half onthem. Um, they were, they were quite busy cause it was at Children's. We had to go to Children's. and the first time was pre COVID. The second time was No, I think the second time was pre COVID as well. They had, but they had a normal, there was a, there was a Norwalkoutbreak or some other outbreak. Uh, yeah. Uh, so we had to be careful. I honestly, I don't remember what the wait was.Angela: [00:07:03] Not that's. Yeah. That's okay. I was just trying to. Trying to draw a line between, you know, when you wait three months to hear back and, on a referral that was supposed to be sent somewhere in that timeframe you don't, you could have possibly already have been seen by the more appropriate, provider.So, Jonathan, I am sorry that you guys had such a.Jonathan: [00:07:31] well, the, I mean the nice thing is that there, it was all just looking like there was nothing for us to do. So, he has recovered without any interventions. They just were doing checks.Angela: [00:07:42] goodness. Yay.Jonathan: [00:07:44] So it, yeah,end result. It would have, it would have ended in the same, in the same place.Angela: [00:07:48] That's notJonathan: [00:07:49] more by luck because, he's, that's the circumstance that he's in.He doesn't have enough damage that it needs any interventions at all.Angela: [00:08:00] Firsthand experience and that's all because of a referral.How Referrals Could Have Worked with Clinnect [00:08:05]So let's talk about what would happen if they were using Clinnect.Jonathan: [00:08:10] yeah, sure. I mean, like that feels a little, it feels a little like let's plug the product. Um, but, but that is what, that is what we're trying to solve.Angela: [00:08:20] I think if there was an easy way to, so, so what I was trying to get is the primary care providers sent it through based on the information. a correct referral. what happened on the other end is because they're a specialist, they have a specialist eye looking at it. they were able to say, Oh, you know, it probably shouldn't go to us.It should go to someone else. That's where that community that's, that's the particular point where the communication broke down back really? Uh, what typically happens with, you know, the faxed referrals is that the specialist's office then has to phone the primary care provider and say, Exactly what we just talked about.Yes. This, is a, is a good referral. We've reviewed it. And we think that you should go to Dr. So-and-so, which is down in the lower mainland. And, please resend the referral down there that that's the communication that didn't didn't happen. Because there wasn't a simple way to decline or reject that referral with a reason.Had there been a really simple way because it probably just got lost in the, in the amount of phone calls that they had to, they had to make. I probably just forgot to. And your primary care providerJonathan: [00:09:30] That's the sense that we got, like, it, it moved very quickly once we phoned, but it felt like, it was sitting there, but like under a pile of a bunch of other stuff.Angela: [00:09:39] Under a pile of the, all this is my to-do pile it's. Yeah, exactly. so yeah, that simple, just that simple communication with the rejection or, And there was no way for your primary care provider to have an easy way to follow up on that, to track that referral. was it, was it received, was it accepted?those are just really two simple things that your primary care provider needs to know that they weren't able to with faxes. You just, you can't check up on this.I'm not going to plug Clinnect, butJonathan: [00:10:10] Well, no, IAngela: [00:10:11] Clinnect does solve those.Jonathan: [00:10:13] we can plug Clinnect, like that's I just, I wanted to share that and, and I guess I'm sort of looking at these notes. Sort of wondering like, Hey, like let's talk about this in the context of referrals and maybe it's unrelated.What Happens to Lost Referrals [00:10:25]Angela: [00:10:25] no, I don't think it is because, so let's talk about what could, like, maybe it will kind of segue into what could have happened if it was a lost referral and what is happening to our system with lost referrals. And let's talk about the fact that there is lost referrals. First of all. Like, that Zach's referral wasn't lost, but you didn't know that nobody knew that because there was no action done on it.And there is this, this, deluge of, of lost referrals that are happening out there? Yes. Fax machines probably work 99% of the time . And so where do these people end up or in your case, let's say you waited.And it was sitting in, in somebody to do pile and Zack got worse. Right. And so then there's this. So there's a few things that happen from this is either you phone. Like thank goodness Julie did. And, and, but that's on the patient or you end up getting worse and you end up in the emergency department. Now this is a huge issue, with lost referrals ending up in the emergency department, because guess what?You can get a consult with a specialist in the emergency department that you've probably been waiting for a long time, because either A, your referral was lost or B nobody's communicated, wait times to you, or even an let you understand that they do have that referral and that, you know, you are in a you're on a wait list.so like, yeah. So even the understanding of, Hey, we got your referral. It's accepted. And, you know, we are just waiting to book you a consult is possibly enough for you to, to, to find the ease, you know, worries. And, and, and, and things like that. But if you don't have that, and you're too scared to phone, Then, then what happens either you end up back in your primary care provider's office with a more acute condition where you ended up in the emergency department and they do, they, they are saying that the patients coming through the emergency department are due to, they have no idea what I was supposed to see a specialist, but I never heard.Jonathan: [00:12:33] Yeah, that just seems, It's so preventable,Angela: [00:12:37] So preventable, right? So preventable and, uh, a number and let's be very clear. An emergency, visit is a huge, price tag for, for, in, in public health care. Like an emergency room visit comes with a price tag and it is far higher than anything else that we're talking about with consults and things like that because the, the resources in the emergency department are significant compared to anywhere else besides, you know, operating rooms in ICU.Right. so there's, you know, there's, there's that. That fiscal piece too. And I don't want to, I don't want to drop it down to like money. but by referrals being lost in the system end up to be far more expensive, from a public payer, perspective, then, you know, just actually handling referrals in a transparent and, efficient way. where do these people end up? Well, they end up hopefully in not worse condition and back in their primary care provider's office or phoning or whatever, but in a lot of cases, they'll just give up on the system and head to the emergency department.Why is it The Patient's Job to Follow Up? [00:13:55]Jonathan: [00:13:55] Yeah. I mean, like, it's just, it feels like there's a lot. It felt like an, one, something that shouldn't have been our job to do, like to have to follow up and make sure that the appointment is getting booked because it involves travel regardless. Right. It was either travel one way or travel another way.So we just needed to plan for it. And whether it happened that week or two weeks from now, it didn't really matter. We just needed to plan our. Plan our travels and our stay. Cause we knew we were going to have to spend the night. And so like, okay, well we haven't heard let's phone because we trying to book travel and trying to book travel around some other things.but why, you know, why is that our job to do that?Angela: [00:14:34] AndJonathan: [00:14:34] And also like, we don't know that that's our job.Angela: [00:14:39] you'veJonathan: [00:14:39] Like no one said, no one said you need to phone and follow up. And even, even when we left the, the most recent appointment. they said, okay. They need to, like the doctor says, yeah, w he's looking really good.Let's see him at this point. At this time. I can't remember what the time was. And we're like, okay. and then he wrote some things down in the computer and we thought, okay, is that it? Is that what we do? And then we left, we left the room and so we like, okay, well, let's go check with the front.And so we went to the front and she said, okay, no, you have to go and get re-referred because it's going to be too long. And the doctor, the specialist didn't tell us that. And he also didn't tell us to go check in with the front. So what would have happened if we had just left? Because there's N there was no, like, there was no clear, like next step for us to do, like, what do we do now?it felt like it was all handled. Like they'll just call us and set up an appointment for the, you know, after the six months or a year. I can't remember, when we're supposed to bring him back, But that's not, that doesn't seem to be what was going to happen. We actually needed to take that back to our GP, to have him do the referral. To, to send a new referral because it expires, I don't understand why would it expire, like, why doesn't it referral expire? And everything's so confusing and why is it our job to do this? Like, why doesn't the system just handle this? Why it's just all in the computer already? Like, why can't you just set a reminder, like I do in my calendar for my dentist appointment to like go and show up at the dentist.Angela: [00:16:08] and I think that's a fair point because we commonly do, compare your experience with, your doctor or your specialist, like a hair appointment or a dental appointment, which seemed to be handled, in, in a way that, like, I know when I leave my dentist, my next appointment is already scheduled forJonathan: [00:16:30] Yeah. Yeah, it's already scheduled. And so that's kind of what I was thinking is that they said, we'll see you in roughly a year or whatever the time was. like I get that. You can't pick a date for me right now, but let me know when it is, because I thought that's what was going to happen. But that, that wasn't what was going to happen.I needed to go and take it to someone else. Then send it back to then book a time like that doesn't make any sense to me.Angela: [00:16:52] right. I, I am unfamiliar with referrals expiring, interesting.Jonathan: [00:16:59] That's maybe not the word, but likewe had to take it back to the GP to send it back.Angela: [00:17:04] So that's an interesting piece is where is the district? So if, if you were truly discharged from the specialist office, then the discharge report should be sent to your primary care provider to let them know that, we've done this and, please refer, uh, Zach back in six months so we can have another blah, blah, blah.Jonathan: [00:17:25] and maybe that's what would have happened,Angela: [00:17:28] but you didn't know.Jonathan: [00:17:30] Yeah. Like why, why is no one telling anyone what the hell is going on?Angela: [00:17:35] why is there no patient communication? Um, standardJonathan: [00:17:39] yeah.Angela: [00:17:40] as a good question. I mean, when, so when, so we are in the referral space. We are not, possibly yet in the patient communication space, big patient communication space is, much more littered with groups, companies doing some type of communication because of exactly what you're expressing.Everybody is not everybody is a primary care provider. Not everybody is a specialist, but at some point in our life, we are all patients or we are supporting patients. So we all understand that to scope of, of the, the journey so much better. It's so disjointed. There is no, one provider for communication to patients, there is, uh, um, kind of a mixed mash of patient communication systems within systems.And, you're absolutely right. there's no way to easily let patients know, actually that's, that's, that's not correct. There is ways to do this. we just, we have not adopted standards. We have not adopted even really policy policy around this. I don't know.Jonathan: [00:18:54] I mean, yeah.Angela: [00:18:56] And, and your, your story isn't uncommon.Jonathan: [00:18:59] No. I know. I know. And this is, this is an easy one. Like it's not even a, it's not even a badoutcome. It's, it's fine.Angela: [00:19:06] It's it is it's okay. AndJonathan: [00:19:08] It's inconvenient at, at worst,that's it? And it's not even really that inconvenient. Like we just had to make a couple of phone calls. It just was like, and it wasn't that stressful. I mean, the, the sort of waiting around to know is Zach's eyes going to beAngela: [00:19:21] course. That's the stressful piece. Um, yeah, so yeah, you know, in this case, this is a good outcome case. imagine being in what is potentially a very critical outcome case, and you're having to manage your own communication and your own appointments and your own, essentially your own referrals. I don't know what to sayJonathan: [00:19:46] I'm not looking for you to say anything. Like I'm not, I'm not looking for you to reassure me. I'm looking for content for the podcast. SoAngela: [00:19:52] I know. I know, I know. I find myself a little bit stuck in between because I'm feelingbad for you.Jonathan: [00:19:57] don't feel bad for me. Like I'm this is I'm using, like, this feels like something that I can talk about for thepurposes of the podcast. Like I'm not looking for a therapy session here at all, like, or sympathy, honestly. Like I don't need the sympathy. Like, it's not like, it's fine. Like we're, we're doing fine. He's doing fine.Angela: [00:20:12] Which is good.Jonathan: [00:20:12] Did we cover all the things that you want us to talkAngela: [00:20:14] not really, like I thought this was like, so there was this.Referral Etiquette [00:20:17]so the CanadianHealthcareNetwork.ca or the, like the medical post that comes out, which I don't, I don't really get to subscribe to because it's like by physicians for physicians.But anyway, it, their September issue was all about referrals. It was like, like that was the. The, the cover art and everything. so, one of my colleagues had had given it to me and there was this really interesting article about referral etiquette guides.Jonathan: [00:20:48] Oh, referralAngela: [00:20:50] Yeah. So I was like, Oh, okay.So that's interesting. Like, okay, so let's go through that. So I, it had some really interesting pieces. I was also very interested as to where does Clinnect fall in encouraging some of this etiquette. So like just naturally through a product to be encouraged some of this etiquette or not.So there was very specific and etiquette for referring physicians and then for receiving physician. So there's like th th for referring physicians. So your primary care provider, the number one thing was give us a specific reason for the request.What do you want to know? So I thought that was pretty obvious, but I having, having worked, you know, in, in a specialist offices and helping them out, you would think this is obvious sometimes this does not like the patient referral does not actually come with a specificJonathan: [00:21:46] Really. So it's just like, here's a scan andAngela: [00:21:49] yeah, well, it's more like I have a really lovely, elderly lady with this. Oh, Okay. what would you like to know about that? And so then this actually gets to, there's another there's another recommendation is, your expectation, is this re to request an assessment or advice? So kind of the idea of what question do you want answered with this? So like almost phrasing the referral as a question, which I thought was really, really fascinating anyway.Number two was, relevant patient history, patient concerns, medication and exam findings. Once is that once again, things that you would think would be, but not always, accurate contact informationJonathan: [00:22:37] Okay, that seems fairlyAngela: [00:22:39] number four was patient age, gender, and any language barriers. So I thought that was interesting.And, That number six was, do not send unrelated medical information or the patient's complete history because I've seen some of those and they can be like 50 pages long. So, yeah.Jonathan: [00:22:56] That's funny.Angela: [00:22:57] right. And so then, okay then for consulting physicians or specialists, uh, what did they say if you accept the referral?Let us know,Jonathan: [00:23:10] Yeah.Angela: [00:23:15] right. Decline or accept. Oh, simple things. Right. And then it was also, if you decline the referral, let us know. and also with that one, it was, please help us out by understanding why. So, so once again, Clinnect automates that etiquette, which I thought was, was, really good. communicating wait times.So just like, like you had talked about the simple idea of how do we just got a phone call, A letting us so that they accepted it. B letting us know that maybe they didn't have an exact wait time, but just even an approximate, you know, you'll be getting a call in three months. Jonathan. Don't worry. We got your referral.We'll be calling you. Oh, hallelujah. Thank you very much. I can breathe easier. And I don't need to think about this everyday because you did talk about how, this wasn't stressful. It wasn't a big deal. It wasn't hard to call, but my guests. And I'm, I, I don't know Julie very well, but my guess is every single day, this came into her mind at some point orJonathan: [00:24:16] yes. Yeah, for sure.Angela: [00:24:18] and maybe yours too, but I, I know what it's like. Um,Jonathan: [00:24:22] He wasn't inside my body.Angela: [00:24:28] Right.Jonathan: [00:24:30] I didn't grow them inside of me.Angela: [00:24:34] Yeah. Right. and then the, the other, the other etiquette was like post appointment or ongoing care. which is yes, like that's, that's good, but that doesn't really have to do with referrals per se. So it was just a fascinating, this etiquette guide where I was like, yeah, so to answer my question that I had thought about before reading there to close, yes, Clinnect certainly encourages all the etiquette plus plusJonathan: [00:25:03] I feel like that can be part of the, like part of the marketing material is, is, you know, high class referral etiquette.Angela: [00:25:10] just like top notch referralJonathan: [00:25:13] Yeah. We know the difference between your dinner fork and your salad fork and theAngela: [00:25:19] We put them all in theJonathan: [00:25:20] and the desserts, but Oh yeah. It's all lined up properly. And the napkins folded exactly how it should be.Folded into a swan for pete's sake.Angela: [00:25:27] Yes, exactly. Exactly. So I thought that was really kind of cute. I was like, Oh, I mean, when I have seen referrals and I do understand why this etiquette exists, I would argue that this is bare minimum.Jonathan: [00:25:42] Yeah. It feels like bare minimum. One of the, the other thing that strikes me is, I understand that this is between professionals, but it feels a little bit like the attitudes that, I feel are imposed on patients too. Like.Angela: [00:25:58] Explain. What do you mean byJonathan: [00:25:58] well, so the, the, the etiquette requests too, like, what is the ask? Like when I go to the doctor's office and say, I don't feel well, and they say, what do you want me to do about it?I don't know, I'm not the damn doctor in this relationship. You tell me what I should do about this.Angela: [00:26:16] This is why I cameJonathan: [00:26:17] yeah. What do I want? I want to feel better. I don't want to feel like this obviously. Like why, why do medical professionals, like, it feels like, like I need to have done all the research and understand everything and they're not really here to help.They're just here to like, let's. Just tell me what you want me to do and I'll do it. Like, no, that's not what I'm looking for here.Angela: [00:26:41] Right, right. And, um, so that's an interesting thing because, it actually, in this, in this exact same magazine article, there was this one written by a primary care provider that said. that talked about how she has all these patients that come in that are just like, just send a referral to so-and-so for me or to X specials.So she, on the opposite side of that felt like she was just there as a, like kind of a fax machine,a referral sender. Like this person didn't really want her investigation. But rather figured that they knew what they wanted and just, and she was, she was like a stepping stone along that. So it's, I, I wonder if there is a bit of a mix of that, where they have, you know, potentially so many people that are coming in going, I want ABC.And then when they have somebody like yourself that comes in, that goes, I have this concern. I don't know. I'd like you to look into it. They're a bit like, well, Do you like everybody else coming in here asking for a referral to blah, blah, blah.Jonathan: [00:27:51] I can't, I can't believe that that is what most patients do is they come in and say, I need this, I need this ID desk. Cause I don't think people that I'm willing to put in that much work to understand anything.Angela: [00:28:04] I think they've talked to their friends.Jonathan: [00:28:06] Oh yeah. Jesus.Angela: [00:28:08] You have to re yeah, I don't want to get into the, you know, also the, the, the high frequency users of our medical system versus the low-frequency users of our medical system are probably more apt to say, I want to ex my friend. So-and-so had the exact same symptoms as me, and they went to.Yes. I want to do the same thing, right.chloroquine, please.. I just wanted to mention this too. there was this, there was this one doctor who did their master's in referrals, which I thought was really right.And he did a whole article, and he was asked, you know, about kind of what his, his, his take was on all this, but also asked about, Like, what does, what does change need to look like? And he referred to the quadruple aim, which is to improve the patient experience. Number one,improve the provider, experience, support the population, by decreasing wait times and provide value for money.So I thought that was an interesting,Jonathan: [00:29:22] that sounds exactly what Clinnect is trying to do. The quadruple aim.Uh,Angela: [00:29:31] maybe that's why I like this article so much. I think theJonathan: [00:29:35] Yeah, it's just, it's just stroking your ego a little bit.Angela: [00:29:38] right, exactly. You got it.Outro [00:29:42]Jonathan: [00:29:42] Thanks for listening to Fixing Faxes, building a digital health startup I'm Jonathan Bowers and my co-host is Angela Hapke. Music by Andrew Codeman. Follow us on Twitter @FixingFaxes. We would love for you to give us a review on Apple podcasts. We've got eight so far. let's get it up to 10. .Yeah. Uh, Transistor added a, added some features into their podcast dashboard, and you can just press buttons and they just get submitted to all the podcast hosts, including Apple podcasts, which took me days to try and get done. And now you just hit a button. Boom. It'sdone.Angela: [00:30:20] beautiful.Good work Transistor.
30 minutes | 6 months ago
It Takes a Village w/ Kristy Ehman from Hyon
Show NotesThis interview with Kristy Ehman was originally release a few weeks ago, but we had to delay publishing it. If you happen to have already listened to this episode, go ahead and skip this one. See you next time.Kristy Ehman of Hyon joins Jonathan and Angela to talk about her journey as a tech founder. Kristy and Angela met at Metabridge in June 2019 and have been talking weekly since. Listen in to get a glimpse of what they talk about; product challenges, users, parenthood, and fundraising.Find Us OnlineAngela Hapke - @angelahapke - https://www.clinnect.caJonathan Bowers - @thejonotron - https://www.twostoryrobot.comCreditsProduced by Jonathan Bowers and Angela HapkeMusic by Andrew Codeman (CC BY 3.0)TranscriptJonathan: [00:00:00] I see, I see you've typed up no notes for this.Angela: [00:00:03] Oh, I sent, I sent a text to Kirsty. Does that count?Jonathan: [00:00:07] That counts.Angela: [00:00:08] Wow, Angela. Good work. Introduction [00:00:12] You're listening to Fixing Faxes, a podcast on the journey of building a digital health startup with your host, myself, Angela Hapke and Jonathan Bowers.And today I'm excited to say that we have guest with us. Kirsty Ehman is joining us today. Good morning, KirstyKristy: [00:00:30] Good morning.Angela: [00:00:31] can you tell everyone just a little bit about you, where you're at right now. And then we're going to talk about how we met and we're going to go into a few other things around why we talk every week.Kristy: [00:00:43] Well, let's talk about how we met. We actually met at Meta Bridge a conference uh out of Kelowna last year. I think it was the 10th year anniversary when we met, patio overlooking the lake, gorgeous.Angela: [00:00:53] You spotted me from across theroom?Kristy: [00:00:56] It was love at first sight, one, one tall female founder, to another tall female founder where I don't feel like I'm overpowering the room and we connected.And that was it.Jonathan: [00:01:05] Are you also tall?Kristy: [00:01:07] Jonathan, are you tall or are you short? And this is intimidating.Jonathan: [00:01:11] I am a medium height. I'm five foot eight and three quartersKristy: [00:01:16] That actually countsJonathan: [00:01:17] yeah, the three quarters counts.Angela: [00:01:19] The three quarters count. Oh, okay. Oh, okay. Kirsty, tell me, who, who are you? What are you doing?Hyon, Connecting Local Sellers with Local Item Owners [00:01:28] Kristy: [00:01:28] So my name is Kirsty Ehman, founded a tech company two years ago and we've pivoted the company one massive pivot. We believe there are two types of people in the world. You're either someone that would do the work to sell your used items, or you ultimately can't be bothered. And our technology connects those two groups.Angela: [00:01:45] Cool.Jonathan: [00:01:45] I like how concise thatwas.Angela: [00:01:47] she's been practicing.Jonathan: [00:01:49] She has rehearsedKristy: [00:01:51] No, I've just, I've said it a million times. It's my only thing. It's the only scripted thing in my life.Angela: [00:01:57] I honestly thought you were going to go into a 15 minute pitch there for one moment. I was like, Oh, and here we go. We are about to hear the Hyon pitch, everyone. I loved it. how'd you get started how long ago?Kristy: [00:02:10] a couple of years ago we had a, New baby and a three year old and they have a lot of stuff. And so we had been introduced to consignment events for kids. Thought it was magical, created our own developed software for our event realized we never want to run events. software could be interesting.Realize the software market for consignment events is not big enough to be interesting. So we pivoted the company to consignment. uncovered that there's these two groups of people. And so if you're someone that can't be bothered, you're pulling up to value village and ringing the doorbell or stuffing your stuff in the bins, in the corner of a, of a parking lot.Angela: [00:02:45] I am a stuff, your stuff in a bin.Kristy: [00:02:48] We call you Jordan. And if you're a, if you're someone who's super active on, on marketplaces, you're, you're on Facebook marketplace, Kijiji ,Craigslist, you brag about how much money you make on these platforms.And we call those people Alison. So our world revolves aroundJordan's and Alison's.Angela: [00:03:05] I love it. And your software connects Jordans to Alison's because Jordan's like myself do not want to be bothered with going on to Facebook marketplace and taking the time to list products and deals with people. I like humans. I don't like people. And, they connect to somebody like myself to, somebody, an Alison that really likes doing this kind of stuff really loves going on and selling stuff.And so your, your product, connects those two types of people. Where are you guys at right now? The product is built.Kristy: [00:03:44] Products built. So we're in a commercialized beta. Primarily in Saskatchewan, but we do find ourselves coast to coast. We're kind of sprinkled all over the place and we are starting our integration to, uh, into accepting payments from the States. So we'll be crossing borders in aAngela: [00:03:58] Ooh, we haven't talked about that yet. That's fun.Kristy: [00:04:02] this is my weekly update.Angela: [00:04:04] Everybody's tuning in now to the conversation that Kirsty and I have each week,Jonathan: [00:04:09] I'm excited to be along for the ride here a little bit and listen to listen to the conversation that you two are having, but I am curious, the, what you're describing is that sort of classic two sided market. how did you figure out how to put the chicken before the egg in this two sided market?Kristy: [00:04:26] As far as where we go first, like, who are we trying to attractJonathan: [00:04:28] Yeah. Like, how do you get these two sides together when you don't have enough of one to entice the otherKristy: [00:04:33] So, our focus has primarily been on Alison's. So how can we pull these people out of the weeds who are extremely proficient at selling online and by developing that network of Allison's, we can then start to attract Jordans. So as soon as someone requests a pickup and says, Hey, I have a snowboard.I needed some help selling, or I have a bunch of kid's stuff or I have some farm equipment. we can go into our Ellis network and say, okay, who can we match this Jordan with? So right now, a lot of those processes are still manual, but we're starting to develop algorithms to, to create an auto matching.And so we've been focused on Alison's, because there are far more Jordans in this world than there are Alison's.Angela: [00:05:10] Drawing similarities, JonathanJonathan: [00:05:12] it's interesting because like the Allisons in this case, they don't necessarily need the Jordans in order to be in the system,And, and is it, yeah, Jordan needs an Alison, but is it possible that the Allisons can scale a little bit across geographies?can they do the work without having to be in the same city as someone else?Kristy: [00:05:32] A hundred percent. And that was actually, an aha moment for us when COVID hit. And we had Allison's and Jordan saying, Hey, I don't want to meet anyone. I don't want to touch them. Someone else's stuff. How can we do this without actually meeting face to face? And then we started looking at that. So, yeah.you know, someone in Vancouver could be selling for someone in Toronto.Angela: [00:05:49] So about a year ago, Kirsty and I started these discussions. Well, we met, as she mentioned, Meta Bridge, and then quickly realized we were at a very similar place with both our technology and our products, but also our lives too. So as Kirsty mentioned, she has two small children who happened to be two lovely little girls.And I also have two small children who happened to be lovely little girls. And so it just made a lot of sense for Kirsty and I to be connected meeting each week to talk about not only where we were with the product and the struggles and the, the bumps that we were having along the way there, but also, balancing as and, just in the last podcast, we talked about that balance of, of work and life and how those lines can get.Blurry and how to create buffer and, and space and margin in our lives. And, part of that for me, is actually talking to Kirsty each week and talking about what she's going through, but I'm going through and how, and just bouncing ideas off of each other. yeah, Kristy, did you want to, do you want to expand onKristy: [00:06:55] Yeah, I think what was fascinating, because if you think about where we were at, when we met may or June last year, we both had an idea of the space we were in and how we were going to grow our companies at the time. And that was it at the time. I was working with three junior developers. Didn't have a senior dev, no CTO, frustrated out of my mind with trying to manage a tech company.And each week. So we come together and talk about our challenges and talk about struggles and our tech struggles with our team's struggles at home in life. And it would be like neck and neck. I'm experiencing this, we'd help each other. It also, I think helped both of us determine the types of companies we wanted to build because we went from being a small B2B.to pivoting into a consumer marketplace and finding, you know, finding a very strong technical cofounder. We're now a team of nine and how many times, like you've helped me fire people. If you've like talked me through how to dynamically change the way I'm growing my company. And so, it's been so interesting, although we're growing differently in different verticals, different ways we've come together and helped each other a lot.Yeah.Angela: [00:07:56] Yeah. And it was, it was wild too. We both launched our products within weeks. I think it was Kirsty of each other. Was it notKristy: [00:08:06] Well, yeah, you were trying to do it on the same day as me. I'm like get out of here.Yeah. This is my time. Angela. Get outta here.I made a comment about, what were we talking about? Our user focus group that we're doing shortly and, and you got all offended that we had more users, but then your users were, were doing something that ours weren't anyways, we're just competingAngela: [00:08:30] Oh, there was, we were going to do a tally of who won that week, which was your idea, by the way,Jonathan: [00:08:36] How do you, are you just tallying like achievements or milestonesor just, justsillyAngela: [00:08:41] that.Kristy: [00:08:42] Whatever you want. It's like, it's like three year olds playing a board game. We just make up the rules as weAngela: [00:08:46] yeah, definitely. Yeah, it was, you had launched your product and you had, you said, Oh Angela, like I have all these users on that are all of a sudden using it. I don't even know where they came from. They're just like on the platform and they're using it in blah, blah, blah. And I was like, Are you kidding me?Do you know what it takes for me to get a user on? And you're just like, Oh, mine are just, you know, joining and I don't even know who this is, not the way you talk, by the way. I don't even know why I'm giving you that voice. But yeah, you're just like talking about all these users that we're on. And I, yeah, I was a bit like I had a bit of, a user envy.of the things, I had it.Jonathan: [00:09:22] my goodness.Angela: [00:09:26] So then you, yeah, so then that's when we were talking about that. And I think my, when that week was personal, I think I'd have personal when and you were like, Oh, fine. Well look at you.Having Someone To Talk To [00:09:36]So, yeah. Back to like kind of timelines in the long run that line. What's another thing that has happened, which I thought was really funny was, Kirsty mentioned really early on in, in when she was describing Hyon about the manual processes.And, and you're still doing a little bit of manual processes and you're talking about, you know, setting in, you know, almost this matching algorithm, which is hilarious because that's exactly really what Clinnect does, is it matches referring providers, patient referrals, to specialists And so, yeah, I remember having this long conversation with you about I'm like, well, you can't do that manually.And we were just brainstorming around how you could also do something very similar, similar in your market that we were already doing in a very different industry, in a very different market. but these are the kinds of conversations that we have that we have each week.And I know for me and my own mental health, it has been incredible to have, another woman that is a, you know, a nontechnical founder with a family, building a product, doing the really, really hard work right now and putting in the hours and putting in the time and the energy, all the energy.And, just being able to almost share that with, with somebody else has, I know for me, has been made a huge difference.Kristy: [00:10:54] Yeah, totally. Totally. And I think it's interesting too. You have, you bring it, you bring a very different perspective. This is the third business that I've started. I've sold one and I'm never sold to government. I mean, sales and marketing to my core, not processes, not details, ideas. And so I, we get on a call and I tell you that I've landed a pilot project with the government of Saskatchewan.And you look like you're going to throw up. And it's like, Kristy, have you thought of the things? And I'm like, well, what things, what are you, what are you talking about? Why are you disgusted right now? And you just bring a totally different perspective and help me think through a way to position the conversation, a way to think of what a pilot project, a way to, to just have a different way of looking at my business, because this is an area that I am so in over my head and learning every day, I feel like I've earned five degrees in the last two years.And one of them has been from you.Angela: [00:11:48] Oh, wait. Heart is so warmed right now. Thank you. you bring, you bring a totally different lens than I do. Cause I remember the one day, Oh my gosh, you were like, well, Angela, like, are you going out? And you're talking to your customers, right? You're like, you're getting that feedback and you're talking to your customers and you always drill that into my head.And I was like, Hmm, no. Not that much.Kristy: [00:12:15] Yeah. I said the help me, help me do a script. And you're like, what are you scripting? Well, I'm calling, I'm calling these users and we've got to figure out what I need to know. Like, what are the things I need to know? How do you call your users? Um, I just email them. You email your, you. Yeah. Or they email me and give me feedback and I'mAngela: [00:12:31] It's so true.Kristy: [00:12:34] you don't talk to your users.Angela: [00:12:36] Who talks to your users? And I was like, I have some really great partners. But to do that hard work for me, but do we have that conversation? And I haven't told you this yet after we had that conversation, it resonated with me and you know, what I did the next day is I wrote thank you notes. And I put together, little gifts for our very first, the beta users that came on the ones that were like, we'll take a chance on you.And we'll. We'll be there with you when you launch your product. So we put together like these really lovely gift bags, and I hand wrote like a full note to them. And so just explaining how grateful I was that they were, I'm going to take a chance on, on our product with us. And, uh, but that was only because you prompted that idea.Kristy: [00:13:28] Contrary to that. You know what I did this last week, we have a user who, kind of has broken all the rules and asked for all the things that we're not building. So I finally told him that he's not an ideal user of ours.Angela: [00:13:40] Oh, you fired a userKristy: [00:13:42] yeah. And very kindly I said, um, Either, you know, in some ways you are ideal, a lot of feedback, a lot of suggestions you've helped kind of us think about our business in a different way.But, but you're, you're not the type of person we're looking to attract this. Isn't a, yeah. So you're right when you're writing. Thank you notes. And I'm firing users.Angela: [00:14:01] Maybe we're rubbing off on each other too much.How Do You Find Your Own Tech BFF? [00:14:06]Jonathan: [00:14:06] I remember now Angela, when you were, when you were thinking about going to Meta Bridge, you went there and I remember you came back and you said, Oh, it was so great.I met, I met my BFF. I have a crush on. Yeah, I think you used the word crush maybe. yeah, it was very sweet. And, but I, anyways, my, my question is like, that seems like this serendipitous connection that happened at this event that wa that is designed to do that. Like the one thing that Meta Bridge, I think to his credit is it tries to create these opportunities for people to meet in this way.So I think in that way it was a super successful yeah. Very successful experience for you. How do you think you can do that again, especially now in like H like that, like this, this story listened to you, listening to you to talk just, it just sounds amazing. And I'm a little bit jealous in some ways.how does someone do this again? Like how do you do this and now, right. To have to have someone to call up, how do you find that person?Kristy: [00:15:05] You know, I think I can even tell you how many times people have asked me how to network because in the, probably in the year. Yeah. And a half where we've really been a part of the Canadian tech ecosystem. I've punched above my weight on multiple occasions every week, almost every day, making connections, referring other people.And I think it has to be part of you. You have to be curious, you have to want it and genuinely have an interest for re for reaching out. When someone taps me on the shoulder and says, Hey, you know, are you mentoring people? Or can we grab a coffee? You know, in my heart, I want to do that, but I better know that this is, this is a two way relationship.Somehow I can help you. And at the end of the day, I'm either going to feel good about helping you or there's some reciprocation to that relationship. And especially now the busier, you get the more things on your agenda. it just has to make sense. And so I think if you're wanting to have an Angela Kirsty connection, It's it just has to be so genuine and you almost can't go out looking for it.It just has, you've got to, you've got to show up. You have to put yourself in positions where it can happen. and, and you've just genuinely, it needs to be, you both have to want it for the right reasons and those things that better match.Angela: [00:16:13] Do you think that we would have found this match? if we wouldn't have met in person though?Kristy: [00:16:17] No, I wouldn't have known how tall youAngela: [00:16:20] right. I wouldn't have known how tall you were that doesn't make a difference. Jonathan, he'slooking at us like thismakes a difference.Kristy: [00:16:28] Um, I feel like. Magic happens in person in ways that it can't happen on zoom. I'm super thankful for the connections that I've made and the new connections that COVID has allowed to happen. But there's something that happens when there's no timeline.We're sitting over drinks, we're out in a city that we've never been to, and we can just explore and learn together and you spend that two hours together and then you become lifelong friends from being in person. So I can't say that I've made a connection in a digital world where I feel like, Oh, If I go to, you know, next time I'm in Montreal, I'll totally look you up.That, that, that hasn't happened for me in the last few months. I think you can't replicate in person.Angela: [00:17:07] Yeah. So to answer yourJonathan: [00:17:09] wait it out.Angela: [00:17:10] we got to wait. IKristy: [00:17:13] No, put it, put him, put a mask on and get on a plane.Angela: [00:17:16] Get up, put a mask on, but it's true. yeah, I think that is the one thing that technology just absolutely cannot replicate is the in-person connections that, that do happen. And I think our whole world is suffering from that right now.And it's, it's pretty difficult. I don't, yeah, I don't think I could, I could have met Kirsty and other way.Jonathan asked another interesting question.Jonathan: [00:17:45] Oh my, uh, I had, I had one written down, but we've kind of moved past it. I was going to ask about your, user persona, your customer personas, but,move past that. Customer Personas [00:17:55]Kristy: [00:17:55] You know, there's something interesting. And let's talk about personas because we've had kind of a I'm I'm, I'm re refining our pitch deck right now. And I've had this moment of recognizing we have a government opportunity. We have some corporate opportunities and we are primarily a consumer company. And so you talk to investors right now and they're like, well, are you B to C?Are you B2B? Are you B to G. And Oh, well I'm B to B could be B to G and it all filters back to B to C. And if you're non-tech and listening to this, that sounds like alphabet soup, but that's how this world works. Google it. Yeah. So what I've recognized is that if you, if you know your persona so well, like we know our Jordan's and Allison's, by the way, everyone, in Saskatchewan knows who Jordan and Alison are, everyone knows.And. You can start to think about those personas as being more than just a person. And Alison can now become a ministry in government. A Jordan can become. some department within a corporation and you can start to think about what motivates that persona. What's curious to that persona, what do they really want?And so, rather than thinking of that as like a person and how am I going to get that person? You just get to know this problem so intensely, and it's less about. You know, are, do they have blonde hair? How old are they? And it's more about like, what's the core makeup of this department or this, this ideal user.and that's been a shift that we've gone through in the last couple of weeks and it'sAngela: [00:19:12] How are investors responding to that? When you, when you start talking about going after a B to B, B to C, B to G and they're like, OhKristy: [00:19:23] yeah,I here's my perception. one, I don't care because if I don't have enough time with them to actually have them understand what we're doing. they would perceive it as being, scattered and unfocused and not seeing the direct correlation. If I have more than five or 10 minutes to actually talk about all three, your opportunities, you can see how are any one of these avenues, filtered directly back into our core product.And if you can see that this government opportunity is essentially an Alison at scale at some massive scale, this becomes really interesting because now we're accessing hundreds of thousands of products. I'm filtering it back into a core product that can then service the needs of, of that user. So it doesn't matter that they're government, well, you know, it could change the sales cycle.but is it interesting for us to observe what's happening with those processes? You know, put some cash in the bank and help us learn more about, about our market. it's fascinating. And I think any investor that gets curious about why we're looking at these three options can see why we're starting with Jordans and Alisonss, but could also understand why I'm, why I'm spending some time dabbling in other opportunities.Angela: [00:20:24] Kirsty just for everyone, that's going to be listening to this. They're going to go, what is this government opportunity? And they're probably going to be trying to put this into their, in, you know, and understand this in their head. So talk a little bit about how this came up and, what, what the problem is with, with, uh, government and use goods.Kristy: [00:20:44] So innovation Saskatchewan, had a few years ago, started this thing called MIST Made In Saskatchewan Technology, where they make it easier for tech companies in Saskatchewan to pitch to government and enter into these projects. And so we go into conversation with them one day and, and, you know, what happens with government used assets?How are they. Sold, how are they recirculated and recognize there's a huge opportunity to provide more transparency. So whether it's staffed or donations that shouldn't be happening, or it's an archaic, you know, auction system of ridding of them, you've got things selling for a dollar that probably should have sold for 200.You have things selling for 5,000 that should have sold for 20,000. and so it, there were just all these things that have changed over the last 15, 20 years and the tech doesn't reflect, um, you know, what the government should be considering today. So we pitched amongst other others, Saskatchewan and tech companies, didn't realize it was a competition style we won.and so it's a bit of cash, but it's also a guaranteed pilot with the government. So, um, central services picks it up and says, Hey, we want to work with Hyon for six months. figure out what they do, what their technology can do and how can that apply to the current needs of government and what can we do in six months?And then hopefully if that six months is deemed successful, what would it look like to be working together beyond that? so that's what we're doing and it's worth noting. Central services is a massive Alison uh, every other government ministry isits ownAngela: [00:22:05] I was just going to say, because typically they're Jordans where they just want to get rid of something and it's on some likely, a middle manager somewhere to just get rid of stuff. And who's to say, he's not he or she, or they are not just giving it to their friends to go sell and make money on it or, or something like that.There's very little accountability. especially if you have a Jordan type, Organization. So it's a cool, it's a cool problem. A problem that even us as taxpayers are probably not aware of and things like that, that you guys are solving, which we're going to be attempting to solve, which is why I wanted to outline that because I think it's so interesting.Kristy: [00:22:43] um, it's not just a government problem. You have offices across North America right now that are, are closing up their office. And having employees work from home, companies, renovating companies, liquidating assets. So you look at surplus.It's not just a government thing. I think this is, this can be applied to, um, to large business, small business, you know, Jordan's and Allison's are everywhere.Raising External Capital [00:23:03] Angela: [00:23:03] Yup. You're right. Uh, so, the, the other thing I'm going to touch on is in a previous episode, we talked about how, us at Central Referral Solutions and specifically, obviously your product Clinnect, we decided. That we were going to bootstrap. We decided that that was the way forward for us. We wanted to, keep the company within our hands.And, we also realized that, institutional investors probably wouldn't be as interested in a company like ours with a smaller addressable market than yours. You guys have chosen to go a different way. Do you want to talk a little bit about where you're at with that? And, maybe a bit about the journey that got you there too.Kristy: [00:23:48] Yeah, sure. Um, I did listen to your previous podcast about bootstrapping and I think you referenced me towards the end of it. You were like, this is the way I've gone, but here's a friend who spent a lot of time. I'm going the other way.Yeah. Oh, a hundred percent to two years ago, almost to the day when we started in tech, I think I thought, why would anyone raise money?Um, and keep in mind, like I've had previous businesses, you don't spend money unless you can afford to spend it. If I have a project that would make me the money back, or maybe I'd lose a little bit, but I could see that this is a valuable asset. I might invest in the asset, but I'm not going to go into thousands of dollars of debt or share my company just because I don't have the users yet.So the idea of fundraising, when I got in, it was ridiculous. I thought it made no sense. Then you get to a point of realizing, Hey, if I have this vision and this vision is greater than what I'm capable of doing on my own with my own resources, you know, how can I make this happen in less than 30 years, really?And we've been super scrappy. you know, being in the consignment world, I'm frugal by nature. And that, that carries through to everything we do in business. We've accessed hundreds of thousands of dollars in funding. so we're, we're nine employees, but are heavily funded myself and my co founder Blair, who was on the ground level of Skip The Dishes.we've, we've bootstrapped the company. We've taken one angel cheque a few months ago, and we're just now at the point of saying, okay, we completely understand what it is that we're doing. And now we can see the team that we need to build and we can, we can see around the corners and this go to market strategy that we can implement.And the reality is, you know, even if we've all sold our houses and eat macaroni for two years, we still probably wouldn't be able to do it with just the two of us. And so that for us, this is the time to rally a community that can support us and can get excited about what we're doing.Angela: [00:25:31] I think it's what I we've had long conversations about this. And I think, um, your approach to this is incredibly well thought out. And, I completely agree with where you guys are at and where you're going. and it's been kind of, it's been kind of fun because. For me, I know that I'm not going to go after institutional money, but I get to live a little bit vicariously through you and your stories around it too, which is it, which is kind of fun for me.And, and I get to learn, you know, shoulder to shoulder, with you each week, just hearing about it and things like that, which has been amazing for me too. So that's exciting. Pitching Hyon [00:26:07] So it sounds like you're at the point point right now where you've decided that, you know, institutional money is the next way to go, that, that's going to propel your company forward. And, before we wrap up, I think it would be great to hear.That little bit of a pitch, from you and your company about who you are and, a little, a little bit more about where you guys are going.Kristy: [00:26:34] Yeah, for sure. I'm well, you should've told me this was coming all right off the cuff, the, the re the recall. So I had a mentor out of the States in Atlanta. Uh, he sends me this article the other day, and the article is about how the re commerce industry is a $52 billion North American industry.And I read this and I'm like, what's the recommerce industry. Oh, That's the space that we're in. That's interesting. And. And I read this article and it's fascinating to me because you look at the other players in the space. So you could look at Hyon and say, okay, well, are they competing with Facebook marketplace and the real, real threat up in Poshmark and Let Go.And. And Kijiji, what's fascinating about the work that we're doing is ultimately we will be a platform company. And so think of us as sort of the Shopify for consignment, where we have this, this valuable user interface in a way of, of, connecting users and really furthering, what's happening already in the industry and making it more efficient for people to use it.And so, yeah. We were, we found this space in, in the recommerce industry of being able to provide value, get more items onto existing marketplaces, make it easier to keep items out of landfills. And so the types of, users that are interested in our platform, it's everything from, Hey, we're green. And we want to keep items in circulation to, Hey, I'm cheaper or hey I'm frugal, and I actually need to go this route, or I want to make some money.And it's sort of a gig economy. and, and talking to investors, they'd have similar motivations. It's either I'm really interested in how Hyon can see around corners and can see this as a massive opportunity in enabling this economy to exist and to kind of drag it into, where we should be in this industry, which is more efficient, less gray area.And for corporations and for governments, you know, we're, we're competing with systems and Excel and pen and paper almost doesn't happen nowadays. And so, you know, the, the pitch, depending on who we're talking to is just, you know, if you're excited about the kinds of things that we're excited about, there's alignment.And so, yeah. Thank you for the you guys for the opportunity to talk about it. This has been fun and my very first podcast and I find it so awkward that it's a voice thing and not a video thing, because if. People listening can see the actions. They'd seeAngela: [00:28:39] her. That's awesome. I'm so, so excited for you guys and the journey that you're on, because I think the opportunity as you just mentioned is absolutely immense and, it's just been so much funwith you. So yay.Jonathan: [00:28:57] Yeah. Thanks. Thanks for being onKristy: [00:29:00] Jonathan, um, send me a note to your camera, please. I don't care how much work it is. I'll figure it out. I needthat. I need to look like that on zoom calls. Outro [00:29:08]Jonathan: [00:29:08] thanks for listening to Fixing Faxes, building a digital health startup.I'm Jonathan Bowers, my cohost is Angela Hapke and our guest today was Kirsty Ehman. Did I get that right? Yay. Our music is by Andrew Codeman. Follow us on Twitter @FixingFaxes. You can find us wherever you like to listen to podcasts. Oh, we were going to change that and I forgot. Do us a favor and tell a friend.Thanks listeningKristy: [00:29:32] feel like I should have worked on my radio voice before I got on here. Angela, your, your, your tone is so awesome.Angela: [00:29:40] Just strokes my ego,Kristy: [00:29:45] Between, between your, your voice and Jonathan's looks, you guys are a fullAngela: [00:29:51] wait a minute.
19 minutes | 6 months ago
Feedback Fatigue Firsthand
Is feedback fatigue a thing? If so, Angela may have been experiencing it this week. Clinnect, as a social enterprise, has sought out and encouraged feedback from all stakeholders. Angela talks about how the process of creating a product with transparency and welcoming feedback can take a toll personally. Jonathan reminds Angela of why she is doing this and gives some real life examples from his own career.Find Us OnlineAngela Hapke - @angelahapke - https://www.clinnect.caJonathan Bowers - @thejonotron - https://www.twostoryrobot.comCreditsProduced by Jonathan Bowers and Angela HapkeMusic by Andrew Codeman (CC BY 3.0)TranscriptAngela: [00:00:00] Yes, my child named Alex might have been messing around a little bit with it. She pretends to do podcasts.They're really bad.Jonathan: [00:00:10] I bet. what does she talk about?Angela: [00:00:11] She kind of makes up stories, but then they don't really have any logical like sequence and to the stories they're very, just weird.Jonathan: [00:00:21] I wish we could, set it up to record her and then like, just listen to a story that Nora or sorry, Alex.Angela: [00:00:29] yeah.not for this podcast. She doesn't know anything about this stuff.Jonathan: [00:00:33] That's fine. We don't either.Angela: [00:00:37] Oh my God. That's true.Intro [00:00:39]Jonathan: [00:00:39] You're listening to fixing faxes a podcast on the journey of building a digital health startup with your host myself, Jonathan Bowers.Angela: [00:00:48] And I'm Angela Hapke. So it is October 29th.Jonathan: [00:00:52] Oh, we're going to divulge the date. People are going to have expectations.Angela: [00:00:56] Yeah, I know. I know. And it's okay. It's okay. Halloween is in two days.Jonathan: [00:01:02] Oh my goodness. Yeah.Angela: [00:01:03] my daughter is going to Alex is supposed to be dressing up tomorrow. She has been wanting well, she's changed her mind a million times of what she wants to be, but she, she finally, decided on being a bunny. we left costume making to last minute last night, it was like all falling apart.Everything was not working. I couldn't deal with it. I lost my ever-loving mind. Alex then decides to drop the bomb. Well, mum, after you bought the bunny costume, I actually didn't want to be a bunny anymore, but I knew you had bought all the stuff to make the costume. So I didn't say anything. I really want to be a bat.Oh, I didn't even know what to say. So many things were going through my mind at that moment.taking an old black tablecloth that I have. I will make a poncho style wings for her. She's going to wear black leggings, little face makeup on, and she will be the bat.She's always wanted to be. I can't deal with Halloweenanymore.Jonathan: [00:02:12] There's no time for those kinds of hobbies rightAngela: [00:02:14] No, there's no time. I, totally, just, I don't know what the word is, but I, I just did whatever. I, I didn't make Nora's costume. She wanted to be a bear. I bought a costume. she loved it. It just fits her thank goodness cause that also came yesterday and her biggest concern was, if I am a bear, maybe I shouldn't crawl around outside, but rather should walk.So the cars don't hit me.Jonathan: [00:02:47] She's very safety conscious. I like that a lot. I mean, there's a number of reasons why you shouldn't crawl around on Halloween in a costume, but that, that I think is the most important one.Angela: [00:03:04] she was though, this child was testing me by saying that she was testing me to see if that was appropriate or not, because she really did want to crawl. So she was more like I'll test the waters. And see what mom says about this. And then when she says it and I'm like, that's a good idea, Nora, you shouldn't crawl.Jonathan: [00:03:23] Well, happy Halloween. Hope everyone had some candy,Angela: [00:03:26] And you were smart about your venturing out or not venturing out during Halloween? Segue should just say that everybody knowJonathan: [00:03:38] Yeah. Just say, just say the word segue,Angela: [00:03:40] segue,On Receiving Feedback [00:03:42]I did have a topic in my mind that was bothering me today.Jonathan: [00:03:45] Yeah, let's talk about it. Was it bothering you earlier on the call?Angela: [00:03:51] Explain yourself, Jonathan. Why would youJonathan: [00:03:53] There was just a few moments where you were sitting there. Purse, lipped,Angela: [00:03:58] Not pursed my lips.Jonathan: [00:04:02] occasionally. Yeah. If you're thinking, well, no, it's not like a, not like that. It's more like they get thinner. Like you'll, you'll be thinking about something and thenAngela: [00:04:12] Is that what I do isJonathan: [00:04:13] I can't, I can't do your face.Angela: [00:04:15] Ah, I wish she could, because then I'd know what IJonathan: [00:04:18] we'll start recording everything so that I can point it out to you.Angela: [00:04:22] So we really do nice debriefs, like in sports where they, your coach goes over things later about how you're really, really screwed it all up.Jonathan: [00:04:31] I'll circle your lips and say, Casey here this moment here, I read this as, and then the eyebrow knit.Angela: [00:04:38] Oh, there's a lot of eyebrow action. Yep, yep, yep, yep, yep. Yep. Um, yeah, it ties in. It ties in,so okay. In the last year of building Clinnect, and maybe, well, actually, I'm going to ask you a few questions around this too. In the last year of building Clinnect. I have tried to lead, a company that is also a social enterprise in a very transparent, hence obviously this podcast too, in a very transparent, inclusive way where I invite people to give me feedback, because I know.I know we have a small team, so I know our team really well. I know our users really well. I know a lot of them by first name. I, my, I have a big, group of founders and, investors and stuff. And I know, I know everybody really well, and I think that I have welcomed and created the welcoming of feedback aJonathan: [00:05:46] okay. Okay. okay. I have a feeling I know where this might go.Angela: [00:05:53] And I wanted that. I wanted this to be a social enterprise where people felt, they had a say in, or not even a say, but rather, a place to be heard about something that was being built that ha I believe has, is going to have such big impact. In the last week and a half, I feel like that all has come, not come back to bite me a little bit, but has certainly made me realize what a, what a thick set of skin I need to have to continue that.Or where is my line in the sand that I need to now, rather than putting this inclusive, mediator, welcoming hat on, take that off and put the CEO hat on and say that's all well, and good. Thank you for your feedback. And now I'm making this decision. And, this has been a hard one these last few weeksJonathan: [00:07:09] Hmm.Angela: [00:07:10] I'm struggling a lot with it.So you've been, you've led a team longer than I have Jonathan.Jonathan: [00:07:18] yeah, I mean, but we struggle with the same things. and it seems to come up occasionally in seasons where I feel like, okay, I can sort of get some feedback and, uh, I don't need to make the decisions. but usually it comes down to somebody needs to make the decision and it's probably. The leader needs to make that decision.Angela: [00:07:42] totally.Jonathan: [00:07:43] and I mean like the feedback is, is still really helpful, right? Like, it informs on the decisions that you need to make and how you gonna approach that and making sure that everyone is heard and feels heard. but it, you know, sometimes you just have to.Like a decision just has to be made. And it's the same, it's the same when we work with clients sometimes. Right. We, we, we often can't make the decision for the client. We can give them, like, here's what we think you should do. Here's the reasons why, you know, if it's, if it's very clear that this is, this is what should happen and we shouldn't really even consider other alternatives, we won't present those.but occasionally it'll be sort of a toss up and we'll say, okay, you could go this way or this way. Think this first way, but if you want to choose this other way, here's the, here's the other option. And here's what that means. we're doing that on another project right now where we, I wouldn't say struggle to get a decision made, but, that's essentially what we're trying to do every week is get someone to make a decision because we have to keep moving forward.We can't, we can't just get stuck having the same conversations over and over and over again. somebody needs to make that decision and then we move forward on it. And it's not that it's not that people are, You know, people are left out, cause the like all the feedback is brought in, but like we have to pick a direction.Like we can't, we can't go in to, we can't go left and right at the same time. we've gotten fairly good at that. I mean, occasionally we'll make, we'll make some decisions that not everyone really agrees with. but generally the decisions that are being asked to make being made are kind of inconsequential. Like it doesn't really matter to someone's existence, whether we do A or B it's, you know, it's, it's, at that point, it's just a matter of opinion and maybe preference and, uh, but it's not like it's violating someone's rights orvalues, so, you know,Angela: [00:09:31] So the dis. I, I don't know if I'm struggling so much with the actual decision making, but rather, I think. I take a lot on personally, because I care about this pro I've never cared about, a product ever as much as I care about Clinnect, I've never cared about a, company as much as I care about Clinnect. And so then when I get feedback that is. And it's just straight up feedback that, cause we've received a lot of positive feedback and some negative feedback, but it's this sense of, us being an, an open book, me being kind of an open book as to whether, you know, the person that you can send all this feedback to.And I'm getting a little bit. I think number one, overloaded with feedback. I'm also, it's nearly impossible not to take some of this personally because I do care. so even though it has nothing, like, it's not me, it's the product that they're criticizing for this, that, and the other thing, if they're criticizing decisions that I've already made and, and things like that.And I am like, I'm, uh, I'm a little feed backed out, but as a social enterprise, your stakeholders are so much more than I then. Well, any other kind of company, I think because you are trying to do something for a greater good, and so therefore there's more stakeholders. That maybe should have a say, I don't know, having trouble managing that,Jonathan: [00:11:13] Yeah. It's hard. I also care a lot, maybe, maybe not as much about this product as you do, but I do care about like a lot of things in the same, with the same passion that you have. And I really, I really get. like encouraged is maybe too light of a way of saying it, but like, I get really encouraged when other people in the team, have that same, that same level of care.And when they think about things in the same way and they get, they get, you know, not emotionally involved with it because I don't, I don't know that that's super healthy, but, to just have like, have this feeling of ownership and, And like skin in the game in a way, that just, I, I get really excited about that.Like when, when someone on our team has taken on an initiative and sort of taken it to the next level, and, and even just analyzed it to the point where like, this is clearly something that they care a lot about, and I want to try and support that. Negative Feedback as a Proxy for Importance [00:12:06]Angela: [00:12:06] and I like that perspective though, too, because I, I mean, that's normally. The way that I feel about it, I'm always like, Oh my gosh. So you know, them having passion and them giving me either critical, positive or negative feedback means they care. And that's the number one thing.They are caring about what we're doing and what we're building. but I think, I think for, for me, is that passion either positive or negative. Has been amplified over the last couple of weeks and it feels like a lot at me. Right. And so I think that's, I'm fatiguing a little bit from the, and I totally agree with you.Like, even, even if it is negative. So we, we, we, have our user who is critical and, Uh, of, of what we're doing of the product of all this kind of stuff. Um, and, but the feedback that they give is actually really, really great.Jonathan: [00:13:07] That's awesome.Angela: [00:13:10] They give it in a way that's, that is sometimes hard to digest. and S and so I, you know, as personally have to manage that, but I think.That them even carrying the ounce that they do about this, it says, says a whole bunch about what we are doing, because it is, it is on their radar. It's something that they do care about. They clearly have a passion about it. and, and that's, and that's great. So amplify that with then a lot of other feedback that I've been getting this week and, and whoa, I tell you, I thought I would relish in feedback because that's the way I love to operate. And I love inspiring passion and other people, but the last couple of weeks is it's like feed back fatigue.Jonathan: [00:14:06] Yeah. Yeah. I don't have any solutions for you at all. Like I have no, I have no, I don't know what to tell you other than to like, try to try to relate a little bit. Um, I mean, well, one thing, one thing I is, I think that if you weren't getting that feedback at all, if you were getting nothing, I think he would be frustrated, but in a different, in a different way.and so I think, I think this is, this is healthier for the product. like you said, like that passion is, I think signaling that this is something that is important. It's, it's, it's worth people. Speaking up aboutAngela: [00:14:39] Totally. And I think also what it does for me is it's a growth opportunity to be perfectly honest. It's, it's allowing me to take it, you know, grow a bit thicker skin and also say, you know, be really, really solidified in why we've made the decisions that we have. Like, you know, take off that hat, put on my CEO hat and say, Though that feedback is amazing, but at the end of the day, business decisions do have to be made and we have made some and they've they, and they have not been done lightly.And so I just have to, you know, get over the whole imposter syndrome and the, this and the, that, and the everything else that goes on and, and just be really grounded in the fact that we have made the right decisions and not waffle on that. And that is. That is that's hard.Jonathan: [00:15:34] I think so. One of the things that happened to me, maybe three or four years ago now. I got some like very, very negative feedback to the point where we had to like sort of mutually fire each other, uh, clients, right.Uh, it was, it did not, it did not go well. and I mean, from my perspective, I don't actually feel like we did anything wrong. in this case, the client, misunderstood something and maybe we didn't do a good enough job clarifying.but, I actually think we did anyways. It felt, it felt heavy. Like it felt awful because I mean, I was on vacation and it kind of ruined part of my vacation a little bit and came back, you know, had to come back. And anyways, the travel back was just awful lost a lot of sleep over it and it felt. it just felt awful and heavy and thick.And now looking back at it, it w it didn't matter. Like it made no difference to my life at all.it just felt, itjust felt, Oh yeah. It, at the time it just felt, it just felt awful. Awful. And I, I mean, I didn't think that my world was ending or anything like that. Like, it wasn't that severe, but, it was really hard to deal with.And, but now it's like, it's so it's so insignificant in the grand scheme of everything that's going on that, I mean, I still think about it occasionally as a, as a lesson, I guess. but I don't, I don't sit and dwell in that, in that feeling at all. and so I find, I findAngela: [00:17:07] helps. Yeah. I was like, okay. I'm finding a bit of comfort in that also, but this too shall pass.I mean, yes and no, it'll just, it was just morph so the thing about Clinnect is we hit on, like, we hit on nerves. With this one, we are suggesting a different way of managing a patient referral, which potentially influences patient care.This isn't insignificant. It's significant. And I take so much ownership around that and, and, the feedback is. Amazing, but it's also highly personalized, highly critical sometimes too. And it's just, wow. Like you got to have either a, like, Well, good way to shed that at the end of the day, which is clearly what I'm I'm missing right now, a little bit is an ability to just kind of go and trust in.I have trust in our team. I just, I think it's trust in myself and my decision making that time. Yeah. That I need to dig into.Outro [00:18:28]Thanks for listening to Fixing Faxes, building a digital health startup. I'm Angela Hapke and my co-host is Jonathan Bowers. Music by Andrew Codeman. Follow us on Twitter @FixingFaxes. We would love it if you gave us a review on Apple podcasts or wherever you review podcasts. Thanks for listening.I didn't know you had a cat.Jonathan: [00:18:48] Yeah, Belle we finally got her to stop sleeping in our crotches.Which is nice.Angela: [00:18:54] I think the word crotch is one of the funniest words in the English language, by the way,
25 minutes | 6 months ago
The Next Evolution of Clinnect
Fresh off a second design sprint, Angela and Jonathan discuss how the sprint uncovered the evolution of not just Clinnect but possibly the evolution of patient referrals. Angela & Jonathan discuss how the new features will create a shift from static patient referrals to dynamic ones with ease. Taking examples from other industries and applying the patterns to Clinnect was an organic next step; but the impact this uncovered for both patients and care providers is what they delve into in this episode.Find Us OnlineAngela Hapke - @angelahapke - https://www.clinnect.caJonathan Bowers - @thejonotron - https://www.twostoryrobot.comCreditsProduced by Jonathan Bowers and Angela HapkeMusic by Andrew Codeman (CC BY 3.0)TranscriptJonathan: [00:00:00] Uh, yeah, I have to turn the, my little desk heater off. Cause I think it, I think it travels up the arm and makes a bunch of racket. So now I'm sitting in the coldAngela: [00:00:10] oh, is it like a really loud one or something? Isthat why I was just about to turn mine on and nowJonathan: [00:00:18] No, keep it off. No, no, don't turn it on. We're recording. You have to suffer.Angela: [00:00:23] Frick fine.Intro [00:00:25]You're listening to Fixing Faxes a podcast on the journey of building a digital health startup, with myself, Angela Hapke.Jonathan: [00:00:33] And Jonathan Bowers. I made a blanket fort with Zach this weekend.Angela: [00:00:39] blanket forts I love blanket forts.Jonathan: [00:00:42] it's our first ever blanket fort.Angela: [00:00:44] Yay.Jonathan: [00:00:45] He was in there for like five minutes and then he got bored, but it was still super fun.Angela: [00:00:49] Isn't that the thing like these kids, like you spent 20 minutes building these darn forts and then they don't even want to sit in them.hot tip on blanket, forts fitted sheets.Jonathan: [00:01:04] Okay. Yup.Angela: [00:01:05] For the roof?Jonathan: [00:01:07] Oh, interesting. Well, I was, I was sort of propping it up amongst a bunch of other things. I know a fitted sheet would have helped me in this case. Um, I have, uh,Angela: [00:01:15] chairs and things like that, fitted sheets the best,Jonathan: [00:01:20] but other, other blanket Fort tip. Many years ago now we decided we were just going to make Christmas presents. That was what we were going to do for Christmas. And for my nephew, I made him a blanket fort kit. I don't remember if I included a blanket or not. but I got, some rope, some special clamps, yeah, clamps, like clamp blankets ontoAngela: [00:01:42] Absolutely.Jonathan: [00:01:43] it was, it was awesome. And now, now that I tried building a blanket fort, without any of those supplies, I'm thinking I might have to build myself up a little blanket fort kit.Angela: [00:01:53] Uh, one year Santa brought Alex, what we called an engineering kit and it also had ropes and clamps and pulleys and, Oh, my goodness. That was probably three years ago. And she still uses all of them,all the pieces all the time. And now Nora, the clamps. Oh my goodness. Like you can go to the dollar store and get just like these little clamps.If you have kids just go get clamps, they will find all the uses for clamps.Jonathan: [00:02:22] Excellent. Okay. I'm going to go buy some clamps.Ah-ha Moments From a Design Sprint [00:02:26]So what are we going to talk about today?Angela: [00:02:28] Well, I have an idea.I was thinking about considering we just spent the last three mornings, doing a design sprint. and I thought, well, it's fresh in our mind. It might be really good to, talk about considering we've always already done a podcast on a design sprint, but also this design sprint, uncovered something very, very interesting for me for Clinnect.Jonathan: [00:02:55] Oh, okay. Yeah. I mean, I feel like, I feel like the design sprint itself produce the results that we wanted it to, which has got us to some really, a lot more clarity on the designs for the product and some of these new product features.Angela: [00:03:09] For sure.Jonathan: [00:03:09] and I don't want to talk about the design sprint, we've talked about that, but tell me about what clarity it brought for you.Angela: [00:03:15] Okay. I think I need to give a little bit of context around this because the, so, just for a refresher. Clinnect is a software product in which referring providers can send patient referrals through to specialists in a way that's never been done before. And with that, patient referrals have always been these static entities that go and are composed and created and packaged up and sent from a referring provider through to a specialist and kind of what I've always joked as they kind of get thrown over this, like, Wall.And hopefully somebody catches them on the other side and everything's taken care of. And that's the way like, historically we've always dealt with patient referrals is okay, I've packaged it all up. I send it away. And I care about this patient and they care about their journey, but my piece is done. And Clinnect was very much built on, on, this idea of that a patient referral is created, packaged up and then sent over. And that's how our beta product does work is we allow a really amazing way to do that. That is for more, effective and patient centric and provider centric. then that originally with just faxes and e-faxes. But then we did this design sprint because we had three new features that we wanted to include that have now changed everything. No, to be dramatic. But so the three features that we're looking at implementing in Clinnect is the ability to add additional attachments to an already sent document. So already we're starting to create a referral as something that could now.Jonathan: [00:05:10] right. It's not just a, it's not just a, an envelope of stuff that you put in it throw over the wall, but now you're like, Oh, by the way, uh, let me throw this other thing over the wall at you. I forgot.Angela: [00:05:21] And hopefully it makes it with that other package already said. Right. so that's the one feature that we're, we're adding on. the second feature is a. And we haven't come up with a name for this yet, but it is, basically a patient referral history or journey log. And what it is is we see this in other applications and it's sometimes so subtle that you don't maybe even realize what you're seeing, but you're understanding a flow of a project or a communication or a document or something like that. So what we're looking at putting in is this, this history of the referral was sent from doctor A to doctor B on X date. The referral was changed in urgency from A to B on X date. So really having a, a transparent process around what is happening with this referral.So once again, that's a game changer too, because now everybody can actually see what's going on with this and how it's changed or how it's morphed. And then the third one is like big game changer. And now we're allowing people to have commentary on the referral through its life cycle. So when now we're attaching messages to referrals.So we thought a design sprint is obvious for these three new features because it really changes. And at the time he didn't really know how, but we knew it changed. What Clinnect looked like from a user perspective, but as we went through this design sprint, what was blowing my mind is the fact that Clinnect is, is going to change the game.Around referrals with features like this is, it's not just a package that you're throwing over a wall anymore, or a better way to throw it over the wall. But now we're, we're creating this living document around referrals. That is once again, so much more patient-centric. So as you can imagine, for example, a referring provider sends a referral through to a specialist that goes through Clinnect.They were able to see what specialist that goes to. They're going to be able to see when that specialist has accepted it. Um, have a whole history around when it was accepted. What happened to it? Maybe the category of that referral changed, from a gallbladder to a thyroid of that that would likely ever happen, but the, the, they can see the evolution of this referral and then they can have this ongoing commentary around it with, Hey, I saw that you changed it from this to this, You know, and maybe if there's questions around that, or, Hey, I forgot to add this lab result that just came in.Here you go. And, that was baffling to me because I knew we were building a product that was changing the conversations around referrals, but I didn't think we would build a product that would change the conversation around referrals as much as we are about to, with the features that we're going to implement as quickly as we've done.Jonathan: [00:08:41] It's funny to hear you say this I'm not sure if it's because throughout the design sprint, we were referencing examples from other, from other industries that kind of do a similar kind of thing. They're not talking about referrals, right?Like they're talking about projects or tasks or, some other kind of work product and the, the patterns that we're sort of modeling after exist in these other industries. And so for me, it feels like it's not that big of a leap. Like, it feels like this is kind of obviously where it was going to go. And the idea that this is a living document, doesn't seem like that big of a stretch.because we're referencing these other, you know, these other products that already do this. And so I'm, I'm kind of like, I'm, I'm equally baffled that you're as baffled as, as you are about this. Like, it, it,Angela: [00:09:30] I think it's the impact that this might haveJonathan: [00:09:35] yeah, but , in what way is that impactful? Like I get that, it, can improve, And I'm kind of leading you cause I know where this is going to go anyways, but I get that the productivity improvements are great. I don't have to phone you and ask you a question.I can just type a message and then you can respond when it's most appropriate. And that feels like kind of the shift that we're all seeing right now towards more remote work anyways, where you're, you know, doing less face-to-face interaction and sort of working in different ways. So that feels like, that feels like good productivity gains.And I think that's good for the customers, but like that doesn't seem so massively impactful.Angela: [00:10:07] It's it's not that, yeah, we can, we can talk a lot about the efficiency gains that are going to happen on both sides for the fact that an attachment can come through immediately and already be attached to the patient referral that you've already received. And there's no work that needs to be done.And I can send a quick, thank you. And it's, it's done. Like what would have taken, you know, minutes took seconds now. So yes, there's. Very clear efficiency gains. But when we start talking about, documents regarding patients care and health and, life, in some cases going from a static document that I can just give to you.And I don't want to say, forget about, because I don't think there's care providers out there that just forget about patients and that's not fair, but given the workload, sometimes it is a bit of a relief to just kind of go, okay, this is off my plate like you just deal with it. Instead in this case, There's an now an ongoing discussion, which may prompt care changes for this patient that may not have happened before.So this quick efficiency gains now. Have the ability to also, gain insight that wasn't there before, because now I can quickly get something to you that you may need to make a decision on this patient. I can have a really quick conversation with you about, a question that's kind of niggling around in my mind about this patient and maybe you have the answer and that changes once again, my care decisions on this, and it's just, it's.Blowing open the communication and that really that more holistic approach to the care of patients between the primary care provider and their specialists. And that's the impact that I'm talking about, that that has the ability to be massively changed. The efficiencies in your workflow are helpful and amazing and tangible.What I'm talking about is completely changing the conversation around how referrals are handled and how care is provided in that time between you sent me sending that referral and you receiving it and seeing that patient, because that can be a hell of a long time. And that. A lot can happen in that time.And, and we don't, and, and this just gets back to wait times too. We don't track what we call wait one time, which is the time from the referrals then sent to the time that it's been received. And, and, and when your government is talking about, wait times are not talking about this time. They're talking about after you've seen the special, closer to when you've had a procedure, this is this gap time that a patient can be forgotten about. And what we're allowing is a really quick way to not let that patient be forgotten about. So that's what I'm excited about. I got it. I'll get off my soapbox now.And it was all because of this design sprint.Jonathan: [00:13:16] Really. Okay.Angela: [00:13:17] it, probably. If I was to really like meditate on this, I would probably say that we knew we were going here. but it was over the last three mornings where I was like, honestly, I was a bit like, Oh, Holy We're going to get there. And we're going to get there fast with us,Is Improved Patient Care Enough? [00:13:37]Jonathan: [00:13:37] I have some questions that have also come up out of all of this, like even in listening to you talk just now, is, is that enough? Like these changes, these changes that you're envisioning feel profound, but is it enough for the product? Right? Like it's still, it is still a business. Um, we still need people to actually use the software. And so it is, are these changes, You know, these changes for the better and changes for patient care. I'm not trying to be crass. Like I know people care about this, but do they care enough to actually change their practice?Like, are we going to, going to stop people from sending faxes because this is so much better for patient care that they're willing to throw their fax machines out and, you know, maybe stop phoning people, in the way that they do.Angela: [00:14:27] right. That's the question. I mean, that is the question that we've been, that we've been faced with from the beginning of Clinnect. It will Clinnect to be enough to get people unstuck from ruts of just doing things the way that they always have. It's still yet to be seen. So I don't know, but, but back to your back to the point where let's tie this back in this, you know, Clinnect is a social enterprise.So we are here for, you know, the good of the people. We are also a business. And so is this enough. And actually that's where my brain went to next to go. I actually think now. Once we build out these features and, and we have this, the second wave of features coming on that really elevates the usefulness of Clinnect.That's when I want to. And before then, because we know this is already coming, I want to go out and scream Clinnect from the rooftop. Like now's the time that I am so sure that we have the right product with the right features, with the right mindset that I'm now ready to go and like scream it and go, I you'd be a fool not to be on clinic to this, like after, after, especially after we get these features on.and so from a business perspective, I think. We've had a step where it is enough and now we need to, now we need to go out and do the SA like the sales and the marketing and, and all of those kinds of things. And not that we haven't, but we, we ha we haven't, we haven't gone and screamed it from the rooftops yet, but now we ha we can go out with even a better script than we had before.And I don't want to keep getting a better script and not customers. So now I think our script is like A+ and we need to go after this and go, yeah. Bang on doors figuratively.So, yeah, I think that's, I think that's where we go next is I am. And I mean, you know, this podcast is really about talking about the journey of building this product and we are fresh off of design sprint, fresh off of a bit of a discovery. And so, yeah, I wanted to share that and my thoughts on that, and I was really excited.Like, I, I left thinking a ton about a ton of stuff. And I think you could probably see it as we were like signing off on the third day. And I was just like sitting there with, you know, looking into outer space thinking and, and, and I'm still absorbing right now. I'm absorbing all that we've done and it's larger impact.And I think it's really exciting.Jonathan: [00:17:33] it's, it's super exciting for me to hear this. for two reasons, one, Like, I'm excited. I'm genuinely excited for the product and the direction that that Clinnect is going to take as a result. But it's also, it's also exciting to hear as feedback to the design sprint process. Lindsay and I were talking about this a little bit because we were debriefing mid design sprint to talk about,Just trying to improve the process.And I was wondering if it was worthwhile doing, because it felt like because one it's mid product, like we didn't, we didn't come into this trying to figure out what products to build. We came in trying to figure out what additional features to add. And we already kind of knew what the features were. We just were trying to sort out how, how, yeah, Holly, how they fit in with everything.And so it felt a little bit strange. But it's still, it's still produced good results. But like I remember thinking to, or thinking out loud to Lindsay, I thought I kind of knew where this was going to go. Like, I felt like I felt like you, me, Chris, kind of knew where, the features and how they were going to need to be implemented. But I think what I'm hearing is, what I didn't expect was that, that alignment that buy-in, from you was really amplified by this design sprint and that you could read it, like it really unlocked this energy in you.which is, which was really that that's the most exciting part for me from the, from the perspective of this process, that it, that it helped, helped to get you there and get you there really quickly, too.Angela: [00:18:57] Yeah. It, yeah, it was literally like three mornings. And I knew like, you know, as a, as a founder, you. Hope and you dream, but also as a founder and a CEO, you have to be really, really realistic. And you're in, you're bogged down in the every day, business building. and you hope, and you dream that you can create a product that is going to be impactful, but then when you get to the point where you're literally with a team that all got it, like everybody was really getting it.And why like everybody knew the why so well. And w it just, this, this, these feature sets were naturally almost organically designed. And then it got to a point where I was like, this, this is what I've been hoping for. This is what I want to go out and tell people that we're building this, this is what people can get excited about and start talking about.And I think we had that before. I think we've always had that, but I think this new, like what we're, what we're doing now has changing. Changing it again.New Features, New Problems [00:20:03] Jonathan: [00:20:03] Sweet. That's awesome. it's been, uh, it's been a super interesting, to shift gears just ever so slightly, like, because we were already have a product that people are using, Uh, that has like, we've created a lot of work for ourselves because in, in some ways, you know, we've been, we've been just sort of like building the product, as, as, as feature needs come up without, I mean, not that we haven't been ignoring what the future needs to have, but like there's a certain, there's a certain balance between getting something out that people can use and preparing for the future.And so in some ways we haven't done a great job of preparing for the future. Chris hinted at a couple of things where he is a little bit concerned that we may have, implemented ourselves into a corner. Um, for some things that need to be undone. some of it not so much, like some of it we anticipated like the history of a referral.Angela: [00:20:55] We knew that this wasJonathan: [00:20:56] Yeah, we knew that was coming. So we laid the groundwork for that. So that actually, that actually feels, very easy to not easy, but it's, it's far less work than it could have been if we hadn't anticipated that, it would be really hard to add that on later. just the way that we've designed it makes it a lot, a lot more of a.Approachable problem. but it's, yeah, there's, there's a ton of work to do that is not trivial stuff. especially because all of this is encrypted.Angela: [00:21:26] Yeah, just that, that, you know, that small caveat and by the way, it's all encrypted.Jonathan: [00:21:33] yeah. So, you know, it doesn't, it, it just, it makes the problems hard to think about sometimes, which is a fun challenge. Like this is, this is what we're like, this is what we are here for. Like, this is what we live for is this kind of stuff. we're really excited. I did about it.Angela: [00:21:50] I think I, this, this is the fun stuff right now. When yeah. When people talk about yeah. Businesses and building stuff, this is the funJonathan: [00:22:00] Yeah, I can't wait to, like, I kind of want to just dust off my design hats and just get back in here and start, start throwing some pixels around. because, there's only so much, like there's only so much of my vision. I can, I can put down onto pen and paper, which is whatAngela: [00:22:17] Hmm.Jonathan: [00:22:19] And I get frustrated cause my, my artistic ability, isn't where my mind wants to it to be. but I can, I can replicate a lot, a lot better in, in a digital form. So I really want to get in there, start like with Lindsey, just iterate on some stuff and hopefully, hopefully I'll get that opportunity.Angela: [00:22:37] No. that's exciting to hear you say that too, because I don't think I've heard you say that you've wanted to like, kind of jump back into those kinds of things prior to this.Jonathan: [00:22:46] Yeah, I wish that I had, I had some more available time to do some of the coding and some of the design work, but that that's actually a liability for me to start doing that just because I'm going to end up like having to be pulled away and there's going to be this half finished thing that.But Caleb's like, what the hell is Jonathan?Like I needed, I needed this. Can you finish please? I'm like, Oh no, I got to go deal with something else. So I don't want to do that. But the design design stuff is a little bit easier to, to jump in and outAngela: [00:23:14] Right. Okay. Fair enough.some of you might have noticed that a podcast, was released on Tuesday, but has since been paused? we were talking to a good friend of mine. It will be released in a couple of weeks. but in the meantime, we would love itif you got in touch with us on Twitter @FixingFaxes and Jonathan, and I would like to know a couple things. First, who you are and where you're from, because we are seeing listens from all over the world. Yay. And secondly, we would really like it if you would let us know a topic that you would like to hear, Jonathan and I talk about.So if you could take the time to do those two things, that would be wonderful.Outro [00:23:59]Jonathan: [00:23:59] Thanks for listening to fixing faxes, building a digital health startup. I'm Jonathan Bowers. And my co-host is Angela Hapke. Music by Andrew Codeman. Follow us on Twitter @FixingFaxes. We would love it if you gave us a review on Apple podcasts or wherever it is that you review podcasts, we'd really like some questions too.So feel free to shoot us off a message and let us know, either a topic or a question that you might have. Thanks for listening.Angela: [00:24:24] mornings, um, doing a design sprint.I don't know. I said that weirdJonathan: [00:24:29] You did it. It was a soft S toAngela: [00:24:32] or there was like very few S's in there. I don't know a design sprint.
27 minutes | 7 months ago
Work Life Balance During COVID
If you have any questions you would like us to answer, please reach out on Twitter, @FixingFaxes.We discuss the pressure that is often put on founders to sink your lives into your company and the toll that takes. Even for people who reject the "exhaustion as a badge of honor" culture, it's really hard to find balance particularly during COVID.Justin Jackson tweeted, "The best thing you can do for yourself (and your business) is to give yourself more margin in your life" with a link to his original article "Good business have margin". We talk about how little margin or buffer we have.Find Us OnlineAngela Hapke - @angelahapke - https://www.clinnect.caJonathan Bowers - @thejonotron - https://www.twostoryrobot.comCreditsProduced by Jonathan Bowers and Angela HapkeMusic by Andrew Codeman (CC BY 3.0)TranscriptJonathan: [00:00:00] maybe we should take some questions from listeners.Angela: [00:00:03] Love that. Yes. Okay.So are we putting it out there to listeners to ask us questionsJonathan: [00:00:09] Yeah. How do they get ahold ofus?Angela: [00:00:10] well on Twitter @FixingFaxesYeah. DM us on Twitter.Jonathan: [00:00:20] Yeah. Or ask a question like just reply public reply. That's fine too.Angela: [00:00:24] Yes. I also think a lot of the people listening, uh, know us personally. So,Jonathan: [00:00:29] Yes. You can also just fire off a message to one of us.Angela: [00:00:35] I was so focused on getting Kristy and Tim on as guests that I'm like, Oh yeah, we needed a topic for today.Jonathan: [00:00:43] Oh, well, um, are we prepared? Sweet?Introduction [00:00:49]you're listening to Fixing Faxes a podcast on the journey of building a digital health startup with your hosts, myself, Jonathan Bowers.Angela: [00:00:57] And I'm Angela Hapke. So I don't know what kind of list we got on. But my LinkedIn and my emails are being hit with all these people that want to help us grow and, um, look for the use of word, accelerate a lot and venture money and all this kind of stuff, but it's very focused on, um, them helping us try and find money.So do you know what I do?Jonathan: [00:01:30] do you just hit spam?Angela: [00:01:32] I actually have replied a few times saying, thank you for your interest. I have no interest in pursuing this right now. If you'd like to hear more check out this podcast about where I talk about bootstrapping, instead of looking for additional funding.Jonathan: [00:01:48] You're channeling that into, you're trying to farm listens out of spam.Angela: [00:01:56] They clearly have not done their research. And so they should do the researchJonathan: [00:02:02] That's funny. I I've been getting a ton of different kinds of email, um, because my email address is the one that shows up. I th I think it's like linked to thepodcast somehow. Um, so, but I get it chests or, sorry, I get emails about podcast stuff. Like we can help you grow your podcasts. We can help you share your podcasts.We can help you do this with the podcast. Um, we'd love to have, we'd love to have our, uh, Our, uh, we have an extensive list of high, high profile guests that would love to be featured on your podcast. And it's soirrelevant and so spammy. but if anyone is feeling like super, super lonely in their inbox, just start a podcast, you will get a ton of great comments from people and they're getting kind of tricky, likeAngela: [00:02:44] Oh, like you're you're you're are you almost convinced?Jonathan: [00:02:49] um, so, so I like the ones that are not trying to trick me, but are using really clever, like really clever tools are really clever. Uh, techniques to get my attention. I really dislike the ones that are trying to trick me. Like the ones that the ones that come through is as a, like, it looks like a forward from some underling at an employee.And the forward is like, Uh, the CEO saying like, Hey, you should check out Jonathan from Two Story Robot and, or you should check out Jonathan from the, from the, uh, fixing faxes podcast. Um, I think, I think it'd be a great to work with. And then, and then that person sends me that email and then comments.It's like, Hey, my boss told me to reach out to you. Like what bunch of bull, whooey is that.Angela: [00:03:24] Wow. That's a, that's something else. You got to flip that script. Just do what IdoJonathan: [00:03:31] I just, I just Mark them as spam.Angela: [00:03:33] now. I know just bugging you is getting listeners that have my, uh, my spam.Jonathan: [00:03:39] I do like that though. I'm going to try that. I'm going to try that.Angela: [00:03:42] Well they're very specifically asking me about something that we released a podcast saying that we wouldn't do right now. So I'm like, well, if you want to learn more about it, then listen to this podcast because I go into exactly why I'm not looking for money right now. Oh my goodness. Sorry. I have stuff at my teeth and it's gross. I'm so glad we're not recording the video. It's justJonathan: [00:04:06] Do you so let's get real vulnerable now. Cause you just picked your teeth in front of me. Um,Angela: [00:04:11] Sorry,Jonathan: [00:04:13] I like sometimes go backAngela: [00:04:14] doing?Jonathan: [00:04:17] and then like pick theAngela: [00:04:19] Alright,Jonathan: [00:04:20] yeah. And the back of the, yeah,Angela: [00:04:23] I get it. I just did that inJonathan: [00:04:25] It's like you get that like fresh from the dentist, feeling at home with your fingernails because,Angela: [00:04:30] Cause those are clean.Jonathan: [00:04:31] and that's what you're supposed to be doing isAngela: [00:04:33] Right now in your mouthJonathan: [00:04:36] just right in there.Angela: [00:04:37] Oh no, don't do it wrong.Jonathan: [00:04:40] on the topic of hands in your mouth, um, children just sneezed directly into your face and mouth, nose, eyeballs, and ears.Angela: [00:04:47] Yeah. They're gross. Kids are gross.Jonathan: [00:04:50] I'm going to get sick. I'm pretty sure. Um, which is fine. Cause I. Don't have, I don't go anywhere. Don't go anywhere. See anyone, but Julie can't.Angela: [00:05:02] Julie, can't get sick.Jonathan: [00:05:03] no, she doesn't have any sick days. She used them all up. Um, she used them all up on maternity leave. The prematurity leaves too early. And then, yeah. Anyways, so they're all gone.So she's got one day, I think at the moment. So I'm staying home with Zach and yeah.Angela: [00:05:21] should We Didn't Really Have The Time To Bake Bread [00:05:22] we talk more about that? Uh, on this episode, work life balance during COVID.spoiler alert? It doesn't exist.Jonathan: [00:05:32] no, I mean, no, it doesn't exist. I was, I was at the beginning. I was quite jealous of people that, um, seemed to be having all this free time.Angela: [00:05:42] Who had, what? Who, who are these people that had freeJonathan: [00:05:45] everybody that was making bread and getting bored.Angela: [00:05:49] Oh, the non children, peopleJonathan: [00:05:52] if they were non children, but maybe it waslike, like people, I don't know. Um,Angela: [00:05:57] trying new things. Maybe. I don't know if it was a factor of boredom. I think it was a factor of, I need to continue to do something and baking bread might be something I could do.Jonathan: [00:06:12] Yeah, I don't find any, there's no balance here. It's just kind of endless. It seems daycare has been the best thingfor, for me anyways. Um,Angela: [00:06:27] day care is awesome.Jonathan: [00:06:29] especially, cause Zach has adjusted so well to it. Uh, he it's, you know, from eight he's there from quarter, quarter to eight or so until I pick him up at four, four, 15, four 30. And I get a whole day of fairly productive work in and I've shifted.So I don't have any other time though. Like that's the only time. So I have been getting up at five. So my, my vacation that I took, I took two weeks off.Right. Wetalked about that. I took two weeks to transition Zach to daycare and I just woke up at five, like, cause I doAngela: [00:07:04] on your vacation too.Jonathan: [00:07:06] Yeah.Finding Routine [00:07:07] Yup. On the weekends, I wake up at five, um, and because it was vacation, I wanted to do, do something that was completely unproductive. So I just woke up at five and then went downstairs to play some video games and just loved it. Like it was really, it was really nice. And then Zach got up and I would, you know, go do the day with him.Uh, and then, you know, do evening stuff with, uh, with Julie, um, And so we had a team meeting and one of my goals that we publicly shared was I'm going to turn that time into, into slightly more productive times. I'm going to exercise in that time. And. Uh, I have not yet done that.I've done it once. I'm like, Oh, let's do like two or three times a week and I can, I've done it once. And I don't know if it's because I, I'm not motivated in the morning, which I normally am. Like I can normally get up and do some exercise in the morning, but, uh, why I was getting out of bed in the first place was so that I don't sit there on my phone, waiting for Zack to wake up, which sometimes takes an hour and a half. And so, so now I'm just back to sitting on my phone, but I, so, but what I'm trying to say is, so that the daycare has created this big space for me. And because I've gotten quite good at like consuming food in a very, very quick manner. I now do lunch. I will do my workouts at lunch. And I'm finding that really, really nicebecause, I've used, I'm used to doing this, but for whatever reason, I haven't been doing, doing workouts at lunch over, over COVID.Cause I've been home and that the demands on my time have been kind of weird, but now I've gotten back to working out at lunch and, Oh, it's such a great way to break up the day. I get to go have a shower.Um, I have lunch. I do my workout. I also, the biking is the best because, um, it's a little bit guilty because.Uh, I'm biking inside, even though it's beautiful outside. Um, but it takes me four minutes to set my bike up versus like however long it's going to take to go outside and find some place to go. And then, um, and then I crank my monitor down and I watch a movie or TV show or something. So it, you know, it feels like double diping a little bit.It's great.Angela: [00:09:00] I like that though. So you're finding a routine during a crazy time, but daycare has, has helped you do thatJonathan: [00:09:09] Yeah, I thinkbecause yeah, and because Julie's back at work, this whole block of time is mine. And so I try to do as much work as I can get done, but I can't, you know, I, I, I'm not going to, I need a break. So I take, I take the lunch hour. Um, usually it's an hour and a half.Um, Lunch workout or workout, shower, lunch. Um, watch a show. Feel really.It is. And also I might recommend not doing zoom calls occasionally and just do a phone call,uh, cause I've done a few of those. And Chris and I used to have, um, weekly meetings where I would phone him from the trainer and just talk to them while it was on the, on my bike.Um, I really liked that. I don't think he liked it at all. Cause I made him take all the notes. Um, but,but phone calls are awesome too. Cause you can go for a walk and a phone call. You're not tethered to your computer.Angela: [00:10:00] Yeah, that's a great idea. since Alex has started, started back at school, school days are quite short, so she was at Nora's daycare for a while, which is a lovely long stretch of time. But now I'm on kind of what we call it. Like I'm on Alex duty and Brad's on Nora duty. So I drop off Alex at school and pick her up.So I drop her off at 8:30 and pick her up at 2:30. So it's six hours minus drive time for me each day. And my whole idea was that, um, at the end of the day I could bring her home and she's old enough that she could do a few things while I worked. That is not happeningat all. I, I don't, I don't know. Actually, I think it's a combination of the fact that, you know, Alex is back at school for the first time and when she gets home, she wants to have a little like mum, daughter time. She wants to have some chats. She wants to do things. Which obviously I want to be there for her. Um, there was a few things that were happening at school that, you know, required more chats and things like that.And, and some navigating. So we were working through that. And then . I feel this weird visceral need to like, have things prepped for when Brad and Nora get home for like supper and things like that. So there's all this time. So I'm literally trying to build Clinnect with these new team members that we talked about in the last episode and do everything in six hours minus drive time.So really let's be honest. This is closer to like five, five and a half hours a day. I don't know. I don't think it's enough. I'm finding myself in the evenings trying, but my, like, my brain goes hard during the day and really shuts down around seven 30, eight o'clock at night, like re like it goes, woo. And then, um, same thing.I was trying to do the workout in the morning thing and I was doing really good. And whoever says that a habit is, is created in like something like a few weeks, right. That's baloney. I don't know what it is about me, but I think it's like 10 plus weeks for habits to be created for me.Jonathan: [00:12:19] I don't know that I've ever heard that. And if I did, I, that does sound like.Angela: [00:12:23] Likenot enough time. Yeah. So anyway, like I, andJonathan: [00:12:26] certainly not exercise. No one can, no one can build an exercise habit of morning exercise in a couple of weeks.The Guilt of Not Spending Enough Time on the Right Things [00:12:33]Angela: [00:12:33] Okay, well, that makes me feel a little bit better because I certainly didn't. I tried and I failed, uh, it was going really like there for a while and then it just fell off, fell off the side. Yeah. Like, but, but at the same time, I am, am only focusing about five hours a day on Clinnect and Central Referral Solutions.And we're still moving forward. We're still getting stuff done. We're still like, is it at the rate in which we could, if I had three more hours a day, maybe, but law of deminishing returns, I just don't think that that's three hours a day would equal, you know, 30 to 40% more movement forward. So I met this weird place where I'm trying to balance work and life, and I feel like I kind of have a balance and I feel pretty happy. Yet there's guilt. And I'm like, gosh, I just can't get it right.Jonathan: [00:13:33] Guilt because you're not spending enough time at work?Angela: [00:13:35] All of it like guilt that maybe I'm not spending enough time on Clinnect and could we be further ahead if I did, but then if I did spend more time on Clinnect guilt that I wasn't maybe being there for my daughter when she really needed me going through a, you know, a tough situation at school.Oh, like, Oh my God, it doesn't end. So where do I want the guilt to lie?Jonathan: [00:13:54] Uh, there's going to be guilt. Where do you want it?Angela: [00:13:58] I found an okay spot for it to sit right now, whichis.It's, it's not maybe not quite working enough. I think, I think because I have such an amazing team and your team supporting it. I am a I'm I'm a little bit more okay with it. But as I say that I feel guilt.Jonathan: [00:14:22] Um, I read, uh, who, who was it now? Somebody tweeted. And suggested, you know, if you're feeling, if you're feeling like not doing a thing or like you're doing too much of a thing or not doing enough of a thing is to think about your regrets, uh, on your deathbed, like skip forward to your own deathbed and imagine what you'd be saying you wish you had done more of, or less of, and, maybe do what your future version of you would would think to do.Angela: [00:14:50] And I think, and that's an easy one, right? Like I knew I made a decision not to have Alex in afterschool care and take the bus and things like that during a really stressful time. Anyway. And instead mum's there to pick her up every day and I feel really good about that. And so if I didn't, that would be a worst guilt then being like, Oh wow, we didn't get that feature released two weeksExhaustion is Not a Badge of Honor [00:15:15] Jonathan: [00:15:15] Yeah. It's uh, and so like to kind of come back to come back to product and entrepreneurship a little bit, like it, it always kind of pisses me off when people claim that it's the hard work. And I don't mean, I don't mean that we're not working hard, but like working long, like doing 80 hours is what's necessary.And no, and I think, I think just, I mean, my core, I don't, I don't want to do that. So there's that, but, um, you know, you talked about like there's diminishing returns, right? You're, you're probably most efficient, most productive in these five hours.Um, you're only doing the stuff thatAngela: [00:15:57] totally.Jonathan: [00:15:58] and everything else is I'm sure.I'm sure there's some additional things you wish you could do. And they.Probably would help, but yeah, like he said, you know, the, your users probably don't really care that much, that they didn't get their feature two weeks ago.Angela: [00:16:12] No, no, they don't.Jonathan: [00:16:14] And in the long, like the long scheme of things, if, if the success of this company is based on the fact that you were able to get a couple of things out two weeks sooner,Angela: [00:16:26] Oh my gosh.Jonathan: [00:16:27] I don't know that.Angela: [00:16:29] Uh, maybe that's not the, and that's not really the race I want to be in either. Right? Yeah. I got to agree. I think there is just so much pressure, especially on startup founders to live their work and breathe their work and give everything they have to it. And I just think that's so. Maybe not unnecessary, isn't the word, but I th I just think that's so wrought with issues and it doesn't ever consider the mental health of the founder or their, or their family.Jonathan: [00:17:10] Yeah. I, I also think it, it miss attributes, the success to the wrong thing. Like, I don't think, I don't think it is the hard work. I think that helps a bit. Um, but I think it's the luck.Angela: [00:17:24] There's luck and I don't. Yeah, it's not all hustled like this whole hustle life. I'm like, I get it. Yes, you do have to move when you need to move. I get that. You don't need to feel like you're at an all out sprint all the time.If you do. I think you're doing something wrong, actually. I think that you should like take a step back off that careening train and go.Getting Buffer in Our Lives [00:17:52] Are we even going in the right direction. And I think it actually goes back to a bit like jus Justin Jackson has talked a little bit about margin um, that one stuck with me a little bit, because at first it didn't totally agree with everything he had to say about it. Yeah. Um, it got me thinking and I, you know, when we do have a little bit of buffer.In buffer in her bank accounts buffer in our time, buffer everywhere. It allows better decision making. And I tell you right now, I am a better decision maker because of the time that I spend with my kids. And I am a better decision maker because I am because I'm a mom like I, the 25 year old Angela would not make as good of decisions quickly as I do now.and I think that's, that's important. We get, if we get too caught up and we're running around, like, like we're, we're constantly sprinting, I think we make bad decisions and then you're having to run around fixing those.Jonathan: [00:18:55] Yeah, I'm, I'm feeling the, lack of margin or the lack of. I like to think of it as like the lack of space a little bit. I like Justin's term of margin there. I think it's quite accurate. Um, I just feel a little bit businessy to, to my life as needing margin, butlike I,Angela: [00:19:12] say buffer. IJonathan: [00:19:13] yeah.And I'm in that right now. Like I have, been operating with, no wiggle room. Not that this is a small thing to have Zach sort of be out of commission for like, uh, you know, a week or maybe longer. Like that's a pretty big thing, but It is.hugely disruptive, it's more disruptive than it really needs to be because I don't have any, I had no buffer in my life. Um, cause there's no, there was no extra time to give to that's happening. Like there's nothing. There's nothing.Angela: [00:19:41] Right.And there's only so long that we can go without no buffer for, like you said Zach getting sick right now is way bigger impact than it was last year at this time. Because last year, at this time, if you maybe had a little cough, you could probably still go to daycare. No big, no big deal.This time he's out for like, A week, 10 days, whatever that looks like. Right. And so now our, our margins are being our buffers are being eaten up, especially with kids and sicknesses. Um, if we don't, especially if we don't have any buffer or margin as in helpcoming inJonathan: [00:20:18] Yeah. There's yeah. There's no help. Cause we're not inviting.Angela: [00:20:20] We're not allowing people in our homes. And soJonathan: [00:20:25] That would also make this easy, right? Like just, yeah. Grandparents can come and watch, watch Zack while I'm working. And my day would be instead of compressed into twohour window, maybe maybe compressed into a four or five hour window.Angela: [00:20:37] into into an Angela day,Jonathan: [00:20:38] yeah, but now it's uh, no, it's like, I gotta get, I gotta get this all done in two hours and then back to. Back to daycare mode, which I, which I'm actually having fun doing. Like we went down to the river this morning and just threw rocks for like half hour straight as I was waiting for the airplane, because the airplane comes in at 10 30Angela: [00:20:57] Yup. And I mean, kids love airplanes, so yes, I know. And if we can allow ourselves to take the time to do exactly what you just said, if we can allow ourselves to just be a hundred percent in that mode, when we're forced to that in and of itself allows a little bit of mental buffer too.Like it'll, it, it, um, as much as it's taking away another areas, it allows us to, instead of just fighting it and being like, Oh, I should be doing this. I should be doing this. There's all these things. They should be doing. Dah, dah, dah, instead of just throwing rocks with my son in the river, this is amazing.Jonathan: [00:21:34] I mean, I guess pretty boring, buthe liked it.Angela: [00:21:37] And right now, the other thing I wanted to touch on is right now is the time to almost make sure as much as we can, that we do have buffer in our life because of these times that you're hitting right now is that extra buffer that we built out a month ago helps right now so much.So. Oh yeah. Yeah. That's an interesting thing. What I like it's just feels like such a paradox. Sometimes building this product and go in and feeling like you're sprinting and going 110 are feeling the pressure to. Um, and then I've chosen really, really the other way I've I've said no, like my family's soimportant. I can't, they're like, there's so little, my girls are so little, um, that would I be okay with five years down the road in there, you know? Like 11 and what would they be? 11 and eight. And during those times it was like, Oh, well, mommy, it was working really, really hard on this startup. I'm not going to be okay with that.Jonathan: [00:22:47] Yeah. I don't know who you are. A friend of mine, a friend of mine. Um, Before all this, uh, we were talking about being the parents. Cause he's, he's a slightly more experienced dad than I am, but he, he likes to think of his summers as one of only 18 summers he's going to have with his kids.Angela: [00:23:06] That like I get why he says that it also gives me like immediate anxiety.Jonathan: [00:23:12] Yeah, Yeah,Angela: [00:23:14] gosh.Jonathan: [00:23:15] it's, you know, it gets a little bit home until they're in their thirties. So, you know, there's, there's lots ofAngela: [00:23:20] Yeah. Cause your 25 year old, a son or daughter is really going to want to spend all that time with you actually maybe 25 year old do 16 year old is maybe the harder one. I don't know.I don't know. Anyway. and I, and I think this actually ties back into. You know, the part that we didn't talk about in the episode around bootstrapping versus going after venture venture capital or equity capital is. I'm not the founder that's going to go after that either because an investor is just not going to see that in me, the person that's going to spend 12 hours a day working on this because I'mnot going, I won't. And they don't like love to hear that they wouldn't invest in somebody like me because it'd be like, well, I don't know.Which is too bad because it means then we expect so many people to give their lives over to some thingJonathan: [00:24:17] I mean, it's a little bit like that extreme version of capitalism, right? Just a hundred percent utilization of your equipment.And if your, if your equipment happens to be human beings,Angela: [00:24:35] equipment,Jonathan: [00:24:36] do it. Yeah. This one, this one broke. We'll just replace it with a new one.Angela: [00:24:39] Yeah, exactly. Exactly.Outro [00:24:43] Thanks for listening to fixing faxes, building a digital health startup. I'm Angela Hapke and my cohost is Jonathan Bowers. Music by Andrew Codeman. Follow us on Twitter @FixingFaxes. You can find us wherever you like to listen to podcasts. And please do us a favor and tell a friend. Thanks for listening.Jonathan: [00:25:02] Uh, I think we should change it from, you can find us wherever you listen to podcastsAngela: [00:25:06] Okay. What do you think? What do you think we should do?Jonathan: [00:25:09] well, I mean, they're already listening to us where they listen to podcasts, aren't they?Angela: [00:25:17] Yes, you're right.Jonathan: [00:25:18] Yeah.
26 minutes | 7 months ago
Building a Team While Building a Product
Show NotesBuilding a team while building a product can be a wild ride. Angela doubles her team in the last couple months, she discusses how that feels at a time that the product is being built out. Jonathan gets into how and why he has added to his company, and the outcomes of different hires.Jonathan talks about taking his son trail running in a stroller, the Thule Chariot Sport.Find Us OnlineAngela Hapke - @angelahapke - https://www.clinnect.caJonathan Bowers - @thejonotron - https://www.twostoryrobot.comCreditsProduced by Jonathan Bowers and Angela HapkeMusic by Andrew Codeman (CC BY 3.0)TranscriptAngela: [00:00:00] september is a very, very, very hardJonathan: [00:00:02] Yeah.Angela: [00:00:04] in many different ways. Oh, my God, are we both burping? This is going to be amazing podcast.Introduction [00:00:11]You're listening to Fixing Faxes a podcast on the journey of building a digital health startup with your hosts, myself, Angela Hapke.Jonathan: [00:00:22] And I'm Jonathan Bowers and I took Zack for a trail run for the first time this weekend.Angela: [00:00:27] Wait in a stroller or was he running?Jonathan: [00:00:33] he, he could run actually, cause we go on our walk. Uh, he's pretty fast.Angela: [00:00:41] fast for his age.Jonathan: [00:00:42] yeah. I mean, it's a walk at my pace,Angela: [00:00:44] Ah, so you went trail running with Zach in a stroller. What kind of stroller do you have that you can take trail running?Jonathan: [00:00:53] Well, let me tell you about the stroller I have. It's a, uh, it's a Thule Chariot Sport. it's spectacular. It's a little wide to be taking down trail, but it was fun.Angela: [00:01:07] Does it have suspension in itJonathan: [00:01:09] Yeah,Angela: [00:01:09] Zack? Yeah,Jonathan: [00:01:10] it has, it has not full system essential, but it's got suspension on the back and then, disc brakes, which is really nice.Angela: [00:01:18] Did he like it?Jonathan: [00:01:19] He, he really enjoys being in the, in the chariot. It's like, yeah, he loves it. We go for runs, weekly, at least. But I was getting sick of the same kind of getting bored of the same route and decided that trail running is something that I should start doing to mix it up a littleAngela: [00:01:36] Okay. Yeah.Jonathan: [00:01:37] boy, is it hard pushing a stroller with a child up a pretty steep hill?Angela: [00:01:43] Do you do much trail running anyway?Jonathan: [00:01:45] Nope, I do one or two trail runs a year.Angela: [00:01:48] Oh, see, we're like, not only am I going to try trail running, I'm going to try trail running with a stroller and my child,Jonathan: [00:01:55] Yeah. Yeah.Angela: [00:01:57] I love it. Well, good for you. That's amazing. Are you training at all for? I know there's no races right now, butJonathan: [00:02:07] Ironman Canada has, sent off their email saying that Ironman Canada, 2021 is a go as best they know. So they canceled 2020, and we got a deferral to the next year. So I've signed up cause it's the. Who knows. So I'm be training for something that might get canceled again,Angela: [00:02:26] Oh, right. It would be frustrating. Full iron man or half. Oh, good for you. That's exciting. Where is it?Jonathan: [00:02:37] Penticton BC?Angela: [00:02:40] Okay, we'll get updates on that as you go.Jonathan: [00:02:44] Yes. That is going to be a new focus of my life again.Angela: [00:02:48] Oh, God, we're going to have to talk about all those things, all the things I don't do, running biking or swimming. Okay. It'll be great.Ah, okay. Let's jump in.Growing a Team [00:03:02]so I, well, can we get Kristy on, but we'll get her on next week. And so then I didn't really have a topic. So then I asked my husband, I said, since he's an avid.Jonathan: [00:03:17] Listener.Angela: [00:03:19] Of Fixing Faxes. Is there something that you wanted to like, is there a topic we haven't hit on that's obvious or blah, blah, blah.And he said, he goes, you know, I think you should start, start talking about building your team, like how you've built a team and things like that. And I was like, Ooh, that might be a good one. So. I was thinking today, it might be kind of fun to talk about. the way that Two Story Robot has built their team and the way that we've built our team, while we've built a product at the same time and how that all kind of goes. And in the spirit of Fixing Faxes, we're going to talk about things as they happen. So as we build our team, we talk about that.Jonathan: [00:04:02] not about the, not about the job application process that requires people to submit faxed resumes to you.Angela: [00:04:11] Could you imagine if I asked for faxed resumes? Oh my God. It's should just shut up shop now if that was the case. yeah, no, no. I was thinking no in the spirit of talking about things as they happen instead ofJonathan: [00:04:25] Yeah. So you've, you've just hired a couple of folks.Angela: [00:04:32] we have just added a full time visual designer and we added a part time intern,Jonathan: [00:04:41] We've talked about one of these people in the past.Angela: [00:04:45] You talked about, Megan as the intern in the past, but I don't think we've talked about, Ammara is, now our new visual designer and she's working remotely out of Mississauga, Ontario. So not only did I add a new person, but I also added a fully remote, different time zone person. Uh, So before it's Jackie and myself, are the full, are the full time people on Central Referral Solutions.Doubling from two to four [00:05:16]And then we have Rosemary. Now Rosemary kind of sometimes gets forgotten about, cause she doesn't work on Clinnect, the product she works, for the general surgeons in town. And I always call her my, my research and development department, um, and she's and she's part time. So we kind of like. Almost, I feel like almost doubled our team with the addition of, of, two, two people to, to only three.Jonathan: [00:05:40] That's a big, that's a big jump.Angela: [00:05:42] Yeah. Can we talk about that?Jonathan: [00:05:44] Well, I mean, it's, it's when it's two, it's you and Jackie like back and forth, andAngela: [00:05:49] re and Rosemary has always been like this fully functioning, amazing person that like just does her thing. She knows exactly what she's doing. We do some check-ins and she is like, she is. Awesome runs her own show. So now I've added two people that rely on me to give direction a lot. And rightfully so, like this is the new product that they're working.They're both Clinnect focused. Oh. And that has been so Jackie and I just got kind of back to working in an office and now we're adding people and, I'm going to be honest, like September, as we were just talking about before the, the, the podcast started September is hard enough. And then I added two new people and I think they're both incredible, amazing people.Thank goodness. But I don't know what the heck I was thinking. Adding two new people in September. Holy moly. I started the same darn day. Like, like, yeah, because I did that to myself, like a total Dodo brain.Jonathan: [00:07:03] that does seem like something you should have controlled for.Angela: [00:07:05] I, yeah, I had full control over it and I just, I, I, I, through many circumstances it just ended up, they both started the same day and it finally got to the point where I'm like, you know what, if I'm going to start one, I'm going to start them both that day.And I just going to take the, like, just the stress will hit that day and I'll deal with both of it. I don't know. So. I don't even know how we wanted to talk about this. I feel like now I'm exhausted.Jonathan: [00:07:36] drained yourself describing it. so the, this person Ammara from, uh, Ontario that's three hours difference.Angela: [00:07:44] It's three hours difference. She is very experienced with it working with remote teams and different time zones. And it's part of the reason that, I would, uh, I hired her in particular is because, she just gets that kind of work and understands that kind of work and understands the tools that are needed for that kind of work.So, and she's, Totally a self starter. She gets what she wants. Like she knows what she needs to get done and she just works on it and does touch bases with me. She's awesome. She, it's almost a little bit more like a contractor than a, than an employee. She, she has that sense, um, about her, which works really, really well with this position.And then Megan is a totally like, not opposite, but she's an intern in university. There to learn. So she is very, you know, sitting with me a lot, asking a ton of, of questions, really great questions. This young woman is brilliant. and ask like really like the really good questions. Oh yeah. but it's.That mentoring piece is taking a lot of my time at a time that we are building this product. We're building out these incredible features to like, like, I don't know if we wanted to talk about that at all, but the features that Clinnect has right now, I finally feel like this is so exciting. The features are just so cool.And, um, so that's all happening. We have more interest and then this intern comes on and it's like, Holy Crow. It was what, and we don't even have our own office right now. Still we have, we are still sharing an office with, two of the generalsurgeons in town.Jonathan: [00:09:29] That counts. I mean, howAngela: [00:09:31] Oh, no, it does. well, I feel like we're quite crowded right nowJonathan: [00:09:35] Well, I mean, if you double, you know, you double again, you got to hire eight people or four people grow to eight and thenAngela: [00:09:41] So how did, okay, so how did you do this?Jonathan: [00:09:44] Well, I don't, I typically don't hire people on the same day.Angela: [00:09:49] Where were you? Two weeks ago?Jonathan: [00:09:51] I don't know. I mean, it's, that's, that's kind of a question I was going to ask you, like you said, you did this to yourself in a way by hiring in September. Was it a case of need or was it a case of opportunistically hiring.Angela: [00:10:04] bit of both. Megan had to start in September because she's on a grant that is a intern grant for full time students. So it was semester based. Had to start in September. So that made a lot of sense. Ammara is also another grant, uh, the digital skills for youth grant and that one I could have started her earlier.but as a full time designer, I don't know, would we have needed a full time designer? We wouldn't have needed a full time designer in June, but I feel like now weJonathan: [00:10:42] in June? Yeah, probably not inAngela: [00:10:43] Exactly. some, yeah. Could I probably have got her on in August and got her a little bit more or up to speed before I slammed her with work?Yeah, probablyJonathan: [00:10:53] So that was, but that was more of a reaction to the needAngela: [00:10:57] that was a reaction to the need.Jonathan: [00:10:58] than an anticipation of upcoming need.Angela: [00:11:00] Yeah, because as we we've been talking about in our weekly meetings, clinic is getting very feature full right now. And with that, a redesign is going to become necessary. just because of all the features that we're adding plus, um, the payment system is needing to be added early next year, which involves a design. And then quite quickly after that, as soon as we have all those, the design pipeline is going to gonna need to be focused on a premium product. And so that's just that screamed, to us that at this was a full time job. So.Jonathan: [00:11:37] there is a lot of design tasks to do and a lot of design uncertainty, and it's, it's the one, the one place that we can't scale up very well in at the moment.Um, cause we. It's just Lindsay and I do a little bit, but I'm stretched so thin. I can't, I can't actually do any design.I don't want to be a bottleneck to that. So I think, I think that made a lot of sense.Angela: [00:11:58] I think so, too. But like, even just that decision, like even that decision around that, like it was honestly, we knew we needed a designer soon. Well, actually, I'm I'm this is almost retrospective. I know we need a designer now in July. Did Angela know we need a full time designer? I had an inkling, but I wasn't even sure.So it's only been two months where that solidified in my head. and then we were like, the biggest reason we were able to hire is because of the grant that we got and which we've done talked about in previous episodes is the only reason that sometimes startups like ourselves are able to actually continue to push forward.so yeah, so I think now, I probably, I maybe waited a few weeks too long too, hire this designer, but now I'm absolutely sure that I needed her. and so I guess that that was good intern was more like, it'd be really nice to have an extra pair of hands around to help out with a few things. And the intern in particular that we, that we chose, Megan has an excellent socially as young as she is a social connection to a lot of the physicians in town, which is a lot of the work that she's going to be doing too, is going around to, and talking to, offices and just getting the awareness of Clinnect up. So that just once again, fit made a really, uh, just made the decision a whole lot easierHiring within the network [00:13:27] When you started Two Story Robot.Jonathan: [00:13:30] Yes.Angela: [00:13:30] Was it just you or did you have another person?Jonathan: [00:13:34] as our story is quite long, we don't need to get into the like nitty gritty details. Cause it's not super relevant. The original story, like the original origins of it. But w we, we changed our name. We, we were a product company before, yeah, it was just me. I had hired a student.Was he a student? He was a student at the time, but I don't think he was doing co-op with me. He just would show up to all the events and with like ask interesting questions, and just, he was just there. So, we happen to have a, share a connection in the past that we didn't, we didn't realize, which, you know, led to, you know, just discussing and, yeah, I hired him.Uh, he later went on to work at Netflix. He's a pretty smart guy. and then, uh, and then it was kind of, kind of just me for awhile. Uh, and I had hired Chris, and him and I were just sort of working on working on things. And then, we actually, we've been reflecting on our hiring process a little bit, recently as part of our assessment of our values and, and how well, how well we're sort of living up to those values and just kind of looking at our hiring process through that lens, which has been really interesting.And one of the things that we realized is only one only one person has come through in a more tradition hiring mechanism. Paige. She's the only one who was hired from a job adAngela: [00:14:57] Like there was an ad, there was an application and there was an interview. And then an offer like the traditionalJonathan: [00:15:04] Yeah. Traditional every pretty much everyone else was identified, in the community.Angela: [00:15:11] Amara is our first traditional hire.Jonathan: [00:15:14] Yeah.Angela: [00:15:15] Everyone else has been yeah. Identified through the community, identified through somebody I know.Jonathan: [00:15:22] It'sAngela: [00:15:23] And fit is so important there.Jonathan: [00:15:26] That's I mean, that's what, fit is one of the top, top things that we hire for like, are they a good fit with us culturally?we don't even really care so much if they have the exact skills cause we can, we can teach them that, especially, especially in development where we know we can teach someone how to become a good software developer in the ways that we need them to be a good software developer. We're we're very good at that.We, we, we can do that till the cows come home.so. Finding someone that feels like they, they are motivated to learn. Really interested in the, you know, the type of work and that, the way we work with clients, uh that's that's the key part is, and just being a good fit on the team. Right. Do we, we don't want to work with people we don't like working with.Angela: [00:16:15] Do you take people on your team and match them to client contracts based on skill or based on the fit with the client or a bit of like a bit of a magic of both.Jonathan: [00:16:27] Um, it's kind of just all over the map. Like we, we don't have a whole, we don't have a huge team. There's there's 11 of us, total. So it kind of, it kind of depends on who's available really, but, but we do, we do match a little bit on skill. I mean, some, some projects need specific skills. Um, everyone has the capability of doing what everyone else does for the most part. We're pretty mobile in that sense.Um, but, but sometimes, and often the case, we have something, you know, some experience that is kind of unique. So like for example, um, the Avalanche Canada work that we've done, uh Kaileen is a back country, skier, avalanche certified, um, really excited to be able to work on the other side ofAngela: [00:17:10] Right. Like she was, she was probably like, I want to work on thatJonathan: [00:17:14] Yeah. Yeah. And, and it was, it just made, it made the most sense. Um, and so she's, she's kind of taken that project on. Um, and then we've got, you know, some other, some other things that lean on some of the other non, you know, not like life experiences that people have. So we've got some other projects that people haveleaned on. Um, so we try, if we, can, we try to do that. we do try to pick projects that that have some other benefit to them other than just like another project to work on.Right? Like it's notAngela: [00:17:40] Justanother product to,Jonathan: [00:17:43] Yeah.We want to, we want to do things that help us, um, uh, step up our knowledge, um, try to try to align with some of our interests.And so that's, you know, that's why we pick a few, uh, pick the projects that we do sometimes.Angela: [00:17:56] Cool. Now, what, what, um, at what point did you feel like getting back to the size of your team? At what point were you like? Oh boy. Okay. Now I should probably hire some more people, but it was kind of scary.Jonathan: [00:18:17] Um, I think every hire has been a little bit has been, has been. Oh, yeah. Every hire is uncertain. know. Right? Like they, you just, and, and, and it's, you know, I'm, I don't want to hire someone and then kind of bail on them because the, because we can't support that position.Um, if they're not a good fit, then they that, and we try to figure out a way to, to, uh, reverse that decision as quickly as possible.Um, and that has happened. We've we've made some poor hiring decisions. Uh, and, and that, that that's bad that's very destructiveto the culture. Um, butAngela: [00:18:59] Yeah.Jonathan: [00:19:00] so most of our hires, because they're not in, because we don't hire in a traditional sense, they tend to be, um, opportunistic hires.So we don't really have, like, there's nothing, we're not so overwhelmed with work that we absolutely need to hire. We're we anticipate there's going to be. Uh, some additional work or some additional need. We're always nurturing some relationships so that if we feel that inkling like this, this, this feels like a good fit like this, this person is an awesome fit.And we think, we think that we're in a place that this makes sense. And so then, then we do a hire, because we do it that way. It's always super stressful. Cause I'm like, I don't know if I should do this ornot like this. Yeah. This is maybe a poor business. Um, but in every case it's always, it's always worked out, uh,it always seems to unlock some new capabilities on the team where. Yeah. Where, when, when you look back at it, you're like, Oh my goodness, I, what was I thinking? Not to not do this? Like, it would just be, just be silliness to not, you know, to not hire this person. they're such a clear fit and are doing so many great things and are pushing us in these new, interesting,Angela: [00:20:13] cool. That's exactly. I mean, that's the, that's the Cinderella story of, of, of hires, right? Is that what you just described the fit and then the, not only just the fit, but the amplification for both the employee and the employer. That's so great. I love that. I mean, I experienced that, um, big time with Jackie.Um, she's been with us for a year and a half now, almost, which is so crazy to think. And, um, and the, the two new people that have just come on have only been, I mean, two a week now. Um, but already are jumping in The deep end, no problem picking up. And, um, so far so good. And I'm, I'm really excited about it, but at the same time, um, Brad said something to me this morning where I was like, Oh, that wasn't a truth bomb.This is the fun part [00:21:11]Brad says to me in a year from now, you're going to be less focused on building this brand new product and more focused on managing people. And that's going to be a huge shift for you.And I think that's when I was like, Oh, Right.And I don't know.No, if I'm ready, like, I mean, I'm obviously not ready for that. That can happen tomorrow. So thank goodness. But in one year, um, I mean, I really like where we're at right now. and I know it's not going to last. And there's so many people, so many successful people that talk about this exact moment that I am at being the most fun.And I am not taking that for granted right now because I am thinking, Oh, no, like. This is the most fun, like, just fun, like in the pure sense of fun. This is the most fun right now. And so building a team is so double-edged with. I want to have, like, I want to have fun. I want to keep doing this. I want to keep building to do that.I have to keep building my team, but in order to keep building my team, that means my time is shifted from like fully product focused to management focused. And I, um, As Nora would say, I'm not prepared for that.Jonathan: [00:22:43] Yeah. Well, the nice thing is no one's taking you to daycare and saying, here you go. Here's all these new kids in your pond to have to play with.Angela: [00:22:52] I know I do. Oh yeah. I do control who moves into the pond. It's totally true, but it's such a, it's so paradoxical in the way that, um, you build a product and you have to build the team at the same time. And in order to do that, you have your, your focus has to shift and, um, yeah, it's hard.Jonathan: [00:23:14] I think though, like, I think you will find, and you know, I suspect Jackie is already doing this for you, in some ways she's a clone of you, right? Like she canAngela: [00:23:24] No. Yeah,Jonathan: [00:23:27] right. Yeah. given some more experience in some more practice, she's probably going to out-think you in certain ways.And, um, that's like how much,how much better can itAngela: [00:23:40] That's the best. That is the best. And all I can hope is that that cycle continuesbut, Oh man, I guess this is the fun part now Oh, that's so amazing. And. Sad at the same time.Jonathan: [00:24:04] It's not the end. It's this isn't the end. It's just the beginning.beginning of along, long it is change. Going from two, well, going from one, you, to two is the biggest jump, but you kind of have been two for such a long time that you've gotten really used tothat. Uh, going, going to three and four is a huge job going to five is going to feel not nearly as scary.Angela: [00:24:32] What if it's like five, six, seven, eight, all at the same time though,because all of a sudden, like, Oh yeah, what was it?Jonathan: [00:24:41] just, just space it out a little bit more.Angela: [00:24:44] Put them all on the same day.Outro [00:24:48] Jonathan: [00:24:50] You've been listening to Fixing Faxes, building a digital health startup. I'm Jonathan Bowers and my cohost is Angela Hapke. Music by Andrew Codeman. Follow us on Twitter @FixingFaxes. You can find us wherever you listen to podcasts. We would love for you to do us a favor and tell a friend. Thanks for listening.how do you want to beep do you want to beep the plot, the last episode? Because you said **** twice. You said the **** a couple of times. Should I beep them outAngela: [00:25:16] Wait, you said **** also?No, you didn't. It's in, it's in the script. I heard **** from you. And then I said **** twice.Um,
30 minutes | 7 months ago
Remote Work During Covid
This episode delves into working remotely, and how Two Story Robot responded to the pandemic. Jonathan designed his company as a remote-first technology company and there was a lot of benefit to this when COVID hit. They found themselves in a unique position, ready for remote work but still had to deal with the pandemic. At the forefront of remote work they had a lot of knowledge to share, and we dig into this.Check out the blog post on this topic they published.Find Us OnlineAngela Hapke - @angelahapke - https://www.clinnect.caJonathan Bowers - @thejonotron - https://www.twostoryrobot.comCreditsProduced by Jonathan Bowers and Angela HapkeMusic by Andrew Codeman (CC BY 3.0)TranscriptJonathan: [00:00:00] Hey, just a heads up. This episode of fixing faxes does have a couple of swear words in it. They're not like the big swear words, just some of the lower order swear words. Um, but they're still swear words. Anyways, if that matters to you. Maybe skip this one.very few bongs last time that was better,uh,Angela: [00:00:20] was very, uh, trying very hard, not to whack anything on myJonathan: [00:00:26] I had, I had four more far more bongs, uh, in mine. I'm not sure. Cause I've moved my mic over here. I'm not used to it. I want a different boom. Uh, Justin Jackson posted a picture of him and I was like, what's that thing? It's cool. It doesn't have it's. It's like all the, all the mechanisms are inside the arm.It looks very, very cool. Um, it's not that expensive, but it doesn't, it's not going to help me cause it's not, it's not longer. I want something longer.Angela: [00:00:51] Oh, you want like a,like a professionalJonathan: [00:00:55] yeah. I want something to come down from the roof and maybe on like a track that I can just like shortslide it around and it can help me in and out of, in another of the bath. Um, that sounds awesome.Intro [00:01:09]You're listening to Fixing Faxes, a podcast on the journey of building a digital health startup with your host, Jonathan Bowers.Angela: [00:01:17] And myself Angela Hapke. So Nora got to sent home with a book on Friday.Jonathan: [00:01:25] I thought you were,Angela: [00:01:27] Just got sent home fromJonathan: [00:01:28] She got sent home with a cold.Angela: [00:01:30] Nope. She got sent home with this book on, on Friday and I found it in her, in her, her bag that she comes home with and I said, Oh Brad, I think Nora stole a book from daycare and he goes, Oh, Nope.Uh, actually her daycare, uh, teachers sent it home specifically for her. Uh, for us to read to her because of it's all about a froggy, but needs to share his pond.Jonathan: [00:01:58] subtle hint.Angela: [00:01:59] no. It was nothing subtle about it. She was very clear. So it's September there is, there's a big transition change in daycare. Lots of new kids starting Nora is one of the older kids now at the right, the old age of three. And, um, It's having a wee bit of trouble with the new children and sharing her, sharing her pond, uh, including friends and space. So Brad reads the book to Nora, uh, and I'm laying with her, she's going to sleep last night. And I say, Oh, did you know, did daddy read you a book tonight? Yeah. Nora is it about a froggy who share a pond. And I was like, Oh, well that sounds like a really good book. She's kind of silent. And she goes, there are a lot of new kids at daycare and I was like, yeah.And sh this is what she says. I'm not prepared for that. Yeah.Jonathan: [00:03:01] She's Oh, she's three. So she she has not only the self awareness to know that she's not prepared, but also understands that this book has been sent home to help her cope with that and create some strategies to share.Angela: [00:03:16] Oh, never underestimate your children.Jonathan: [00:03:23] That's so funny.Angela: [00:03:24] Anyway, I had to tell you that story because it was just too adorable.Jonathan: [00:03:28] I love that.Angela: [00:03:30] I not prepared for that.Okay.Jonathan: [00:03:34] that's a big word prepared.Angela: [00:03:36] I know she says "p-pared", but yeah. No. I know,Remote Work [00:03:46] Yeah. So today we wanted to talk a little bit about, um, working remotely. This is a huge topic right now, uh, with, uh, COVID and a lot people working remotely, a lot of people that have never worked remotely are now working remotely. A lot of people that have worked remotely or some, what worked remotely are now a hundred percent working remotely and just all the, the spectrum of, of working at home to working in the office.And Two Story Robot does a really. Um, a really cool way of, of handling remote work, um, because you guys have done it by design right from the get go almost. And I just, I thought it'd be really cool to talk about that.Jonathan: [00:04:31] Thank you. Yeah. Um, It is by design, but it doesn't account for a pandemic.Angela: [00:04:41] Fair enough.Jonathan: [00:04:42] Like we, we have been, we have been remote pretty much from the beginning. I mean, most of us actually do work out of, out of one office. Um, there was six of us that have one office and then a few sort of scattered about everywhere.Um, but we've always, we've always taken the stance that if you can do your work remotely, then the work in the office will just benefit from that. And that, that, that has proven true. Like, we were very good at documenting. We're very good at communicating digitally. Um, we don't have to have meetings and when we do have, uh, zoom calls, they tend to be, um, Better than the average zoom call that I've attended for other teams, just because we're used to it, we understand the process behind it and the empathize with everyone.part of it came from the MBA program, actually.Yeah. Cause I did what we did. We both did the MBA at Sauder and I was, uh, although we had to go down for the actual courses and the classwork. A lot of the project work happened remotely. And so, um, I got to experience both, uh, working with a team that was physically close to each other so they could meet.And then I was the remote one and then occasionally there was like, all the remote people were put on a team and we would work remotely. Those meetings always went way better.Angela: [00:05:58] Yes. I found the same thing. I usually got put on the PR on the team with all the remote people also. and let's also be clear that you didn't just finish your MBA. That is over it's over 10 years ago now, right?Jonathan: [00:06:12] uh, 2010, 2011. About 10 yearsAngela: [00:06:15] So about 10 years ago. So even then, so 10 years ago, remote work was kind of a thing, but not really a thing. And so, um, yeah, you PR you probably learned a ton. So let's unpack a little bit about what you were talking about. You talked about meetings remotely, but you also talked about the, um, tools that you guys use to manage work.Jonathan: [00:06:36] Yeah, so we are very heavily documentation first. so we, we have sometimes scared off some clients just by the pure volume of documentation that we can some occasionally create. Um, So we use a tool called Notion to basically write almost everything down, everything from meeting notes, um, planning, documents, um, some of our tasks go in there in any of our internal documentation.We do all of our blog writing in Notion first. yeah, it's just like documentation first. We, we don't use email.Angela: [00:07:13] Like at all,Jonathan: [00:07:14] I mean, we have email accounts, but we don't use them.Angela: [00:07:16] between each other, between team members, you don't use them atJonathan: [00:07:18] Nope. The only thing we would use email for is like for a legal, like for legal paper trail. Um, and, and most of the emails, most of the emails we send are to external people.Angela: [00:07:29] So as a, as a client of Two Story Robot, um, do you guys use Slack though for a lot of messages back and forth? Like, is that kind ofJonathan: [00:07:37] Yeah. The Slack, as a, as an instant messaging or messaging platform has replaced the more ephemeral conversations. Like if I were to walk up to your desk and say, Hey, what do you think about this? Um, we try not to do that. We do that in Slack, and we do that in a, in a way that allows everyone to be able to see it.So sometimes it can get a bit noisy because there's a lot of discussion going on and we divide all the conversations into different channels. So there's a channel there's actually two channels for Clinnect one internally, which you don't get to see.Angela: [00:08:12] seeJonathan: [00:08:13] yeah, we use the internal, the internal one, just talk about internal stuff and then, but most of the conversations happen on the external channel . Every one of our projects has their own channel and we have all the discussions in there and we try to discuss things in the open.So if you have a question, we just say, Hey, uh, does anybody have an answer to this? Or if you just happen to come up with a solution to something you might say, Oh, Hey, I was thinking about this and I've I've I, you know, I came up with this solution here and that's really handy because, um, Unlike when you come up to my desk and bother me one bother me, interrupt me and discuss something with me.All that discussion we have is, is lost.Like we don't no one else. Yeah. No one else gets to benefit from that. But if we have that discussion on Slack in the open one, although Slack, I don't think is a great tool for this. It's less interrupting. I need to have the discipline in order to like, resist that interruption, but it's also visibleforeveryone. to see.Angela: [00:09:06] Yep. Um, I can see why, if you come from an industry or you're a client that isn't maybe been exposed to this level of transparency and this level of, um, open discussion and things like that. Working with working with you guys, as you said, it might be a little bit like it might, it might feel a little vulnerable at first because everything is out in the open.And I know for me, when we started on, um, on, uh, an external Slack channel with you guys, uh, I wasn't overly comfortable with it. I was probably still messaged like, you know, texting you and things like that, or stopping by your desk. Uh, but since, since COVID, uh, that that's not really an option anymore is to just stop by your desk.So. I, uh, I've found more comfort in it and actually embraced it a little bit more too. Yeah. Just because I am able to go back and take a look at something or find something thing that we had, you know, talked about and what exactly did we say about that? Or what did we come up with the wording for that, or et cetera, et cetera.I have found it to be helpful.Jonathan: [00:10:14] Yay. That's. Some of w you know, why we want to talk about this a little bit is that we, we quickly realized at the beginning of the pandemic, cause we did, we did this workshop. Um, once we went remote and then a few days later, we saw lots of other teams starting to go remote, uh, just locally, um, We thought, Oh, maybe this is an opportunity to share some of our knowledge with some folks.And so we did a workshop that was well attended. We had like 70, I think, 75 people,Angela: [00:10:42] Wow. You guys had 75 people for that workshop. I didn't realizeJonathan: [00:10:45] I think I know 75 people registered. I don't think all 75 people showed up. Um, I think by the, I know at one point there was like 50 or 60 people there, um, watching or consuming it. And then, um, they sort of trailed off at that towards the end, cause it was an hour long.but I was surprised at the level at which a lot of teams were operating in terms of what remote meant for them.Angela: [00:11:09] Explain that, what do you mean by that?Remote is not the office but via Zoom [00:11:10]Jonathan: [00:11:10] Um, they were, a lot of teams were basically just trying to replicate the office via video. And it was, almost offensive that, that, yeah, like it was right. Like one team, um, there, they just expected you to open up a zoom callAngela: [00:11:32] Oh, justto, just to have a camera at you theJonathan: [00:11:37] well, who knows what the intent was behind it, but,uh, but certainly like certainly a feeling was like, why do you need to see me? And like this, that's not how that's not even how an office works. Like I don't sit face to face with all of my colleagues. And, um, we, we worked with another client, um, and they, they did remote work in us in this strange way where we all sat around a zoom call and watched somebody type into a document.And we all sort of took turns telling them what to typeandAngela: [00:12:08] in those meetings beforeJonathan: [00:12:09] yeah. And so they're awful. They're such a waste oftime. CausethereAngela: [00:12:14] doing?Jonathan: [00:12:15] Seven of us on the call. Like we don't all need to be telling one person how towrite word documents.Angela: [00:12:20] no.Jonathan: [00:12:21] Um, and you know, just after the pandemic, we did that workshop and we thought, Holy cow, there is a ton of teams that have no idea how to do any of this. Even some of the smaller things like, you know, maybe not using email in the way that people do. And, um, No even just introducing the idea of a, of a Slack channel to discuss things that don't need to happen in email.It just was kind of revolutionary let alone the idea that let's work through documentation and, or communicate through documentation and try to do as much asynchronously as possible. Um, whereas you know, this, this, some of these teams were. Where yeah, you, you, you start your day at nine, you finish at five and the whole thing's via zoom.IAngela: [00:13:05] Oh, and it's also, that's not a way to burn your burn, everyone out. I don't know what is, I think you guys, so, so what I have experienced, uh, working with your team, and there was one meeting in particular that really jumped out at me and I was like, Oh wow, this is it was very obvious as to how natural this remote work was for your team having.So we're having our weekly zoom call, um, that Chris leads with all the, like the different, uh, topics that,on the schedule. And we get to, uh, the topic of design and Lindsey, unfortunately couldn't make that meeting. She had let us all know ahead of time and we knew that she couldn't make the meeting.Um, and then it came to, you know, design, which is, which is, uh, Lindsay's almost line item. And, um, So what happened almost seamlessly was Chris goes, I'm going to start recording this zoom call. So Lindsey can see what we're talking about. And I have a few screenshots that I can share, and we can talk about those and we can at least give her a little bit of feedback.So that for the next week, you know, she, or when she, you know, is back on, she can, she can take a look. And it was just immediate that the, the recording started and what was really even more neat about the way that you guys did it was, um, we immediately started talking like, she was not like she was there, but she was going to be listening to this.So it was, um, okay. So Lindsey, when you see this, um, here's what I'm thinking about this and this and this, and over here, blah, blah, blah. And we would, we would talk through it. And then we kind of got through that, that line item and the schedule, and then we just kind of moved on and, but it happened so quickly and there wasn't , it didn't seem like there was a barrier to involving someone that couldn't make it. And, um, So that like almost goes like, in my opinion, that goes like levels up from just remote work to now working with people, um, that might be in different time zones that might be, you know, that don't have to be in person to get everything that they need to get out of that meeting, which shifts our thinking around, um, certainly in person meetings, but then.Even more so in person, virtual meetings too,Jonathan: [00:15:27] Yeah. I really think that most meetings don't need to happen. Period full stop. Like there's so there's so much that can be done. Um, asynchronously that the in person meeting needs to like, they need to be flipped in a way. So it needs not, they should definitely not be, um, like a broadcast style meeting where one person gets up and sort of talks to the whole,Angela: [00:15:51] Like a podcast,Jonathan: [00:15:52] Yeah. Yeah. Well, no, that's true. Like it, it could just be a podcast, like, just get the mic hit, record, record what you're going to say, send that out and then people can consume it whenever, whenever it makes sense to them, it doesn't have to interrupt their day and they don't have to schedule around it because what's the value in me attending the thing real time.Angela: [00:16:08] Exactly. And I can consume what I need to consume from that meeting at a time. That makes sense to me. Um, and maybe I'm ready for it.Jonathan: [00:16:17] Yeah. And, uh, Interesting side note. As, as you become better at listening to podcasts, you tend to start increasing the speed at which you consume them. Um, and when you can do that, then you actually. If, you know, if you had a 10 person meeting, instead of, instead of delivering a meeting for an hour, maybe that's a bit long, but you know, delivering content for an hour consuming 10 hours worth of people's time.If everyone is able to listen to it at two times, speed that's, You know,five hours, you cut that in half it's. And some of the tools allow for that. Like we have, um, design, is this. It feels like this, this harder, this harder piece to crack, like we've, we've got some aspects of design that we can do asynchronously. We've got tools that allow us to really seamlessly hand things back and forth, like being able to do, being able to do that meeting that you mentioned, um, kind of relies on the fact that we use the tools that we do, where everything is sort of shared in the open, um, when Lindsey finishes, what she's doing, the moment she's done.I mean, I can actually go in and watch her do it live. Like if I want to, I can watch her dragging elements around the screen, but when she's done, I can, I can go in and look at it and take, you know, take it to a client meeting or start giving some feedback right away. Um, that's, that's super necessary. Um, but then.You know, there's still some things about design that are pretty hard asynchronously, and it's really helpful to have this like realtime feedback. Um, but barring that we do lots of video recordings that we send back and forth to each other using Loom. Um, it's one of the tools that we use. Uh that's that can be really helpful.Um, yeah, it's just a, it's just a shift to how do you, be the least interrupting? The least interruptive is that the word is just, yeah. The least interrupted that you can be because there's so much, so much wasted timeby being interrupted on things.Angela: [00:18:01] and let's all be honest when, when we're at home and especially for those of us that are parents, we are being interrupted all the time. Anyway.Jonathan: [00:18:12] Yeah. And I think, I even think despite like, you know, the kids having kids, that's the whole other challenge. Um, but this pandemic on the stuff it's doing to our emotions and our mental health. if you can avoid like a one hour meeting a week, that's just so much better. Right. And if you can, if you can still still get the benefit of, of whatever needs to be discussed at that meeting at your own time.Um, I think that's, you know, just creates a, a more sustainable pace to this, to this weird life that we have right nowwhere, you know, I wake up and. Like the last, the last couple of days, I've been very, very tired. Uh, just exhausted and at night just uninterested in doing anything. So I'm not that I do when you work at night, but I can't, you know, if, if somebody were to schedule a meeting, I can't do it.I can't attend that. Um, but, uh, yeah, I've done this where, you know, Lindsay will have recorded, recorded some loom videos. I'm like, I can't, I can't look at this right now. Like I'm just exhausted, butAngela: [00:19:10] Yes exactly. That's what I'm talking about with consuming it at a time that you want to consume it. So if I'm going to enter a meeting where let's say I've just had. Uh, like, uh, a gong show of a morning, the kids have gone, like just all this stuff is happening and then I'm expected to jump on a call right away, be active, be, you know, interested, be giving, like giving feedback, et cetera.Um, it would be way better if that was all recorded. I could then say I can't do this right now, but I can do it in a couple hours after I have, you know, had a coffee. Sat down and maybe just did something for me for, you know, even 10 minutes for Pete sake. And then, and then I'm in a, in a, in a, in a frame of mind where I can consume, um, what is being put in front of me and have way more valuable feedback, be way more engaged, even though it's literally not engaged with the person at the time, but we more engaged in the content of what's being presented to me.The mental health impacts of the pandemic [00:20:10]so you touched a little bit on, you know, You're feeling exhausted right now, a lot of people are going through a ton. Um, I think, you know, mental health is, is kind of the second pandemic that is happening alongside this pandemic of COVID.do you want to talk a little bit about how that's, impacted the way that you guys work in and changes that you've made?Jonathan: [00:20:33] Yeah, I think, I think it's been, um, unexpectedly, I don't want to say unexpected. Cause I think we could have, we could have expected this if we had thought a little bit about it, but, um, it was more taxing emotionally than I think anyone would have thought. Um, we thought we really thought that because we were, uh, we were geared up for this.Like we, we switched to remote, like in less than an hour. That'sThat's how long it took. Like we just said, okay, the end of the day, that's it. We're not actually, it was, it was less than, less than an hour because no one had an opportunity to do it. Cause it was at the end of the day when we were, because I remember we were, planning on going to an event and I told Paige, I said, we need to be watching the news on this.And like, here's our plan. If, Bonnie Henry has any kind of indication of an escalated response from the province. That's our trigger. We're not going to any more events. Like we cancel everything we're going to, and we're not going to the office. And so we were watching that and it was like 45 minutes before we were supposed to go to the event and, uh, whatever, the, whatever.Yeah. That's what it was. And I messaged Paige, this was like, Ok that's it we're work from home now. She's like, okay. And so she said set off an email to the event organizers. And then I sent an email after the team saying we're working remote or work from home as of now. And then the next morning we were just working from home.So it took us no, no time.And so we were geared up for the mechanics of workingremotely. Oh yeah. We could just switch instantly. It was not a problem, but what we didn't maybe expect was there is no water cooler talk. There is no going up to your desk. Um, there is no how was your weekend banter that happens when you walk in, in the morning?Um, and that's, I think something that we all took for granted, um, We, you know, we've tried to replicate that because we have some, you know, we have some teammates that are remote. Um, and so we try to replicate some of that, but you can't replicate all of it. Like it's just, it's impossible. People just are social creatures.And so having that, that isolation, um, and not just from our team, but from everyone, like no one was no one was interacting with their family. No one was interacting with their friends.Angela: [00:22:35] Yeah, it was all shut down and it felt like overnightJonathan: [00:22:39] Yeah, it was. it was just me and Julia and Zach, andthat's enough.That is enough for me at the moment, but boy was it hard? Um, and it, and I think everyone, everyone was struggling in their own, in their own ways. And, and, and just sort of struggling with this idea of we all have jobs. We all can work remotely. We haven't been affected financially yet. Um, maybe we don't have the right to feel this way.Like maybe we don't, we don't have the right to feel like this sucks. And so that kind of weighs into it.Angela: [00:23:14] the comparative suffering.Jonathan: [00:23:16] yes.Angela: [00:23:16] this is what I kind of describe as not allowing you yourself to feel your feels because you feel like somebody else is having is getting it worse.And by not honoring your own feelings, um, can really be that ways again. On on, on not allowing yourself to, to feel like, to feel like shit about your scenario right now.Right. And, um, and you're allowed, like we're all allowed to feel like shit about our scenario and yes, there's, there's other people that do certainly they've lost their jobs and they have like, I mean, the list is endless of, you know, people that are struggling.Through this at a much more difficult pace than we are, but, uh, but also we can only help others once we allow ourselves to feel what we're feeling and be,Jonathan: [00:24:04] Yeah, I suppose so. I mean, I remember, I remember distinctly, um, you know, sort of prepping, like trying to try to motivate, I think by propping are propping ourselves up as saying like, like it could be wayworse for us. It could be so much worse. Like we are very fortunate in everything we have. And I don't know if I sort of helped create that, um, that, uh, You know that climate to allow for that, that feeling like, okay.I don't, I don't, I shouldn't be complaining.Angela: [00:24:35] Uh, there's no playbook for this. Uh, there's no playbook for the pandemic and there's no playbook for, uh, for those of us that are leading others through it too. Um, I think that what you're saying is, is true though. And you're allowed to, you're allowed to feel all those things, you know, I feel bad for this and not, uh, everything.And so, yeah, there's no playbook and there's no, Right way to kind of handle this is what I've, I've also seen, what a shift to happen? Oh, I think it felt like it happened overnight where all of a sudden, I remember packing up my, my bag that day and saying to Jackie, um, I'm at home now.And I don't know how long I'm going to be at home now. I now have to be at home. My kids are at home, my husband's at home.I have to be at home and I just remember packing up all my stuff. And I was like, like, you know, it did only take half an hour. I was literally like, okay, laptop, computer monitor. But then it was just, that was the end for, for, um, for four months. And then, you know, we've slowly, I mean, it's, we have a small team, but slowly getting back to kind of working together ish, but, uh, it was tough.It was a tough time. Still is you're right.Still trying to build a product [00:25:54]And in that time, so I guess maybe what I want to daylight from all of this too. Is March is when we kind of like pandemic hit, well, BC, for sure. In mid-March we shut her down and, uh, your team and my team continued to build Clinnect because you guys had these tools in place.These, um, I don't want to call them policies and protocols, but it was, it was very much like the culture of how you worked still allowed us to launch a product. You guys still built a product for it during a pandemic, all working remotely. And I think the lessons that you guys have learned has been amazing and tremendous.And so now I'm going to plug your blog posts is Jonathan wrote a blog post about this and, uh, even though like, I work with you guys all the time, there was still stuff in it that I was like, Ooh, that's a good nugget. So if anybody's looking for just like really good nuggets around working remotely, we'll link the podcast or the blog and in the show notes for the podcast.Jonathan: [00:27:09] Yeah. Thank you. We've we've gotten some really fun feedback from that.Uh, yeah. Yeah. Some people have specifically messaged me and saying like, thank you for sharing this. This is, this was really good. Um, it, it, we're pretty, I'm pretty proud of this. I mean, Kaileen wrote most of it.Uh, yeah. Uh, we did, we did collaborate on it. Um, but I'd say she's the one that made it have the, um, human, the deeply human feel to it. Not that it wasn't human to begin with, but, um, yeah. Uh, yeah, she, she brought just this extra piece, extra bit of heart to it that, uh, I'm really proud of her for doing,um, And yeah, but people like people have commented and said like this is really nice.Like, this has been really helpful. Um, and then some other folks, um, I wouldn't say who, but, um, so someone has someone has printed it off and it has it at their desk looks at it occasionally, which I find just so heartwarming.Um, and they, they want to implement some of these things. They kind of work in a, in a, an environment that.Might make this like really challenging, just cause they're notgeared up to work. Yeah.it's so wonderful to hear that. And um, yeah. It's like, we've got, this is just like scratching the surface. Like we've got so many more, tools at our disposal. This is, this is more around how do we, how do we just not lose ourselves too much?Um, and what are the things, what are some of the things that we've tried to do? Um, but every team is different and every team needs to kinda figure out what's gonna work.Angela: [00:28:40] exactly.Outro [00:28:44] Thanks for listening to Fixing Faxes, building a digital health startup. I'm Angela Hapke. And my cohost is Jonathan Bowers .Music by Andrew Codeman. Follow us on Twitter @FixingFaxes. You can find us wherever you like to listen to podcasts.And please do us a favor and tell a friend. Thanks for listening.Jonathan: [00:29:05] uh,Julie's mom made a pear pear, craisin crisp or cobbler. That was really nice.Angela: [00:29:12] it is cobbler time.Jonathan: [00:29:14] Oh, I love cobblers.I love cobblers. I don't love fall because it represents the switch from summer to winter. And I prefer summer. I like, I like the sun.Angela: [00:29:24] Oh, no, I don't think we can ha I don't think we can hang out anymore. Now.I am a hundred percent shoulder season.Jonathan: [00:29:32] Oh, no, no, no, no shoulder seasons. They can just curl up and die. Like, yeah. It's wet and useless time.Like there's the only thing that's great about it is all the food.Angela: [00:29:44] The fall food is like the best.Nope. Fall. Fall is the best.Jonathan: [00:29:53] Yeah.Angela: [00:29:53] I don't think we can. We can hang out anymore now.That's it. This is the end of fixing faxes. We are done. Jonathan is a summer person. I am a fall person. We can no longer be friends.
1 minutes | 8 months ago
Taking a break this week
September has been exceptionally busy and we need a week to catch our breaths. See you next week!
28 minutes | 8 months ago
Why Say No to Money and Bootstrap?
Show NotesTo fundraise or not, that is the question in this episode. Angela walks through the decision making process around whether Clinnect should go after institutional money or to bootstrap. Listen to find out what she decided.Find Us OnlineAngela Hapke - @angelahapke - https://www.clinnect.caJonathan Bowers - @thejonotron - https://www.twostoryrobot.comCreditsProduced by Jonathan Bowers and Angela HapkeMusic by Andrew Codeman (CC BY 3.0)Transcript[00:00:00]Angela: it's a cute chair. Not a ergonomic chair.[00:00:04] Jonathan: Oh, ergonomics. I, so I've come to the conclusion that money should not be spared on shoes, mattresses and chairs.[00:00:18] Angela: I'm with you on shoes and mattresses... chairs, I'm not sold.[00:00:26]Jonathan: we have, their, their retail is like $1,200. The chairs at the office. Yeah. They don't, I don't get them for retail. I[00:00:35] Angela: I would[00:00:37] Jonathan: know, but still they're like 400 bucks, $450 for the chairs.[00:00:41] Angela: expensive.[00:00:43] Jonathan: They're pretty pricey, but they are there. They're very, very comfortable.[00:00:47]I needed something where the, The, the arms could move up and down. Cause I like that that's important to me. And then it's just like a proper arrogance and you can pick and choose the color.[00:00:57] So I've got orange back[00:00:59] Angela: Oh, and a blue bottom[00:01:01] Jonathan: I believe seat and it works pretty good. And then, and then I have an in, at a furniture supply company and she said, no, don't those ones are good, but these ones are way better. And the[00:01:11] Angela: like $20 more.[00:01:13] Jonathan: Yeah, her price was a little bit more. And now we've got all sorts of colours.[00:01:15] So Paige's is yellow and gray and mine is red and gray. Yeah.[00:01:20] Angela: Okay, you guys[00:01:22] Jonathan: I like, I just, it here's a pet peeve of mine, corporate gear that is all black, like hoodies, all black hoodies, like, and then just, here's the standard chair. It's gotta be black. Why can't people have a little bit of expression. So we pick the chairs that are, uh, uh, uh, let us pick the fabric,[00:01:44]Angela: That's cool.Introduction[00:01:44] You're listening to Fixing Faxes a podcast on the journey of building a digital health startup with your host myself, Angela Hapke.[00:01:54] Jonathan: And I'm Jonathan Bowers and I've started Zach in daycare. Yeah.[00:02:03] Angela: How are you feeling? How's Julie feeling?[00:02:06] Jonathan: Uh, it's pretty scary. We were just doing transition. So every, every day, this week I'm going with him for an hour and being with[00:02:15] Angela: Yep.[00:02:16] Jonathan: week, just gets gradually, uh, longer. And I'm, I'm not[00:02:20] Angela: And then you[00:02:21] Jonathan: And then we start on the, the first, uh, that, uh, the eighth or whatever that first day in September is.[00:02:28] Oh, it's scary. It's scary. And, and then, then yesterday[00:02:37] we get a call. Okay. So one of the other, uh, families, has to self isolate. This may have been in contact with COVID and I was like, okay, well, this is the new reality, I[00:02:47] Angela: This is your new reality. This is a hard moment in life in an especially hard time. Oh,[00:02:55]Jonathan: He's doing quite well. He, we went the first day. He cried when we went in there. So one of the, one of the strange things that we've noticed about the pandemic and our, trying to follow the rules, so we don't go anywhere, but like, we don't go into buildings, we don't go places and we don't take Zach[00:03:13] Angela: of course. Yeah.[00:03:15] Jonathan: And so I can't remember where we went once and he was really afraid to go inside a door. He, he looked at this new space and he didn't want to go inside. And we thought, Oh, this is, this is cause he's deconditioned to going places. And then kind of the same thing at, at[00:03:29] Angela: Oh, sugar.[00:03:31] Jonathan: he was. Um, he was okay.[00:03:34] Kind of going in, but he didn't want to be inside the room and it was a little bit overwhelming and he cried a bit and, uh, he, he calmed down fairly quickly. Um, and then he cried again when one of the when, one of the girls that was there, kind of ran ran at him. He didn't like that very much. but he got used to it and yesterday we just spent the hour or outside[00:03:53] Angela: Yeah. Lovely.[00:03:54] Jonathan: that was, that was really fun. Um, yeah, I think, I think he's going to be okay. He's going to be okay. I know he's going to be, yeah. Okay. Um, but it's, it's hard.[00:04:04] Angela: It was about, um, two years ago, right around now is when we drop, started dropping off Nora for the first time. The first time that the actual drop-off happened , I wanted to be the one that did it, I'm going to drop off the girls.[00:04:22]and then I just sat out in my car and cried. Both times, like I was like, so adamant that I was going to be the one that did it. And then I sat out in my car and cried and cried and cried and then phoned Brad both times like, Oh,[00:04:39] Jonathan: it's hard. So I've been taking him because, um, cause I worked from home and I'm like, it's just. You know, five minute drive away. So it makes sense for me to be dropping him off and picking him up. And Julie works kind of across town, um, in our minds, she had planned on being the one to take them through transition[00:04:56] Angela: Of course. Yeah.[00:04:57] Jonathan: but they said like, no, it needs to be one parent for the whole, the whole two weeks. And so we decided it makes the most sense for me to get familiar with it because I'm going to be do to dropping things off. So it was, yeah, it was really hard.[00:05:10] Cause you know, she was kind of geared up to[00:05:13] Angela: she was ready. She was[00:05:14] Jonathan: to go and do it and now she doesn't get to and I'm, I'm the one doing it. So, um,[00:05:19]Angela: it's[00:05:19] okay. If you sit in your car and cry after,[00:05:23] Jonathan: I, yeah, I I'm, I am a more emotional about this than I expected to be[00:05:29] Angela: and it slaps you in the side of the face and you don't expect it and you're just like what?[00:05:33]And good for you for taking time off right now. I think for too often, we don't take time off in these. Um, times in our life where there's some like there's change. We always like, Oh, I'll, I'll take time off for vacations. And I must have vacations and holidays and things like that, but we kind of forget that we need space around big change times[00:05:55]Jonathan: I think I recognized it, but I didn't, I didn't realize it was going to be quite as necessary. Like I thought, Oh, you know, I can, I can do half days or something like, no, I'll do the full days. Cause I got lots of like projects. I want to do some reading and some other things that are like just sort of recharged, but.[00:06:11] Wow. I'm glad I have all morning to just think and stew about taking Zach to his daycare for an hour in the afternoon, and then it's over and done. And then we go play and, uh, it's a lot better.[00:06:24] Angela: Oh, that's amazing.[00:06:26] Oh, so fun. I love it. That's great. You guys are gonna do amazing.[00:06:32]Bootstrapping[00:06:32] Jonathan: I hope so. Funding bootstrapping. What does bootstrapping[00:06:39] Angela: Should one bootstrap. Um,[00:06:42] Jonathan: one bootstrap? I think I understand what the term bootstrapping means, but I, I feel a little fuzzy on it.[00:06:48]Angela: So bootstrapping to me may mean something different than it does to other people. I think bootstrapping, um, is like this broad term. And what I do feel like is it's more what it's not, and it's not venture capital. , it's not going out and fund raising.[00:07:08] Jonathan: right. Okay.[00:07:09]Angela: Um, it's finding a way to do it, uh, among your tight, small team. In a lot of cases. I think for founders, it's probably just themselves, family and friends, uh, things like that, but it's not going out and doing the flashy venture capital parade.[00:07:32] Jonathan: The parade, the pageantry.[00:07:35] Angela: Right. It is a little bit,[00:07:40] Jonathan: so this, so, so CRS and Clinnect is not, um, not venture venture backed, so there's no, there's no institutional money. There's no external money either. I don't[00:07:55] Angela: there's no external money. There's no institutional money. There's no venture money. There's no ink angel money. Um, outside of, you know, co-founders, there's, um, There's none of that, but it was a process to get there to decide that. And I think that's more, what I kind of wanted to talk about today was if somebody like understanding what bootstrapping versus investment looks like capital investment looks like, and then why we went the route that we did. I think it's an interesting process.[00:08:28] Jonathan: Well, I mean, walk me through that a little bit. Like the, so it's not venture funded. I mean, there, there, there certainly is I don't want to say pressure, but there is a bit of keeping up with the Joneses-ness to venture funding, where people celebrate how much[00:08:43] funding you've[00:08:44] Angela: moly. Right.[00:08:46] Jonathan: And, uh, I remember, I think it might have been like Steve again, Steve Wandler said, you know, you don't celebrate the fact that the chef went and acquired all the ingredients.[00:08:57] Angela: I like that a lot.[00:08:59] Jonathan: you don't celebrate that you celebrate the, the meal.[00:09:02] Angela: Yeah,[00:09:03] Jonathan: yeah, not the fact that he went shopping.[00:09:04] Angela: no, but way too often, we are celebrating this shopping. you see, so often all these people celebrating these, you know, seed funding series A, series B, closures of millions and millions or whatever it looks like. And it's attractive who doesn't want to go out and get millions of dollars and say that you did.[00:09:29]Um, but back to Steve's point is. But I also don't want to just celebrate the fact that I went out and got some ingredients who[00:09:38] Jonathan: you still have to, you still have to mix all that stuff together and[00:09:41] Angela: got to do it.[00:09:42] The Pressure to Raise MoneyJonathan: yeah. Still do it. Still make the business makes sense. So did you feel that, did you feel that pressure, that, um, peer pressure to go off and do some external funding.[00:09:52] Angela: it's industry pressure. I think it's peer pressure. I think it's Oh gosh. It even comes to like, it feels like a bit of a popularity pressure. Just like all these kinds of things. Yeah, absolutely. It got, I got caught up in that for a little bit. I figured we could. We had a good idea.[00:10:07]who is to say that we couldn't do that? there was a time when I wanted to go out and fundraise and go down that road. And then a couple of things happened that really changed the course and man Steve Wandler's going to get some shout outs in this episode, but he sat me down and said, um, okay, Angela, First off what's your TAM Tam is your total accessible market. We're dealing with primary care providers and specialists our customers. So it gave them the numbers, kind of Western Canada, Canada. And he just looked at me and he's like, you're not going to get any institutional money with that TAM.[00:10:53] And it was so embarrassing because I was like, yeah, you're absolutely right. How the hell did I figure that I was going to, like, it was just so obvious.[00:11:04] Jonathan: Right.[00:11:05]Angela: Um, So, I mean, that was the number one thing where I was like, well, this is like, why would I bother then? so then that was kind of like the fall of last year.[00:11:16] And I was like, okay.[00:11:19] Jonathan: Sorry, can we just, before we go onwards, so the, you looked at the numbers for, for your total addressable market for your TAM and it's, it's too small?[00:11:28] Angela: Too small. Yeah. For, for institutional money. So institutional money wants to see high growth, high numbers. They want to see millions of users. They want to see, um, the fact that you can be the horse that wins the race in like the money race. Right. And with a TAM, just at this point, focused on Canadian doctors is not a number large enough for institutional investors to be interested in you.[00:11:58]And it was a bit, like I said, it was a bit embarrassing because I probably should have figured that out, but it took somebody to kind of like, look back at me and hold the mirror up and go. How do you figure that this would you're right? It won't. So that w that was a big one. It was also becoming, Oh, how, how do I say that?[00:12:20] It was also becoming, not just a distraction, it was spending so much time trying to learn about institutional money, learn about, um, who was doing what out there, uh, how to do it, how to align, how to find an investor, how to find an investor that aligns with the principles and ethos of your company. And I mean, and that's, you know, we'll get to the kind of that part and the fact that we're a social enterprise and you need that alignment more so than ever.[00:12:55] I wanted smart money. meaning that I wanted an institutional investor that was, that knew about digital health and understood the product and the market and, and it was just becoming overwhelming, distracting and I was spending too much time.[00:13:14] Focusing on that rather than focusing on what the, what the hell did the product look like? What were, what were we building? What did the meal look like versus what ingredients did I want?[00:13:25] Jonathan: Yeah. And at that point you didn't have a sense of, um, yeah, there wasn't, there was no[00:13:31] Angela: There was no product. We had ideas. We had nothing, and that was the other thing we were going to go out. And what was I thinking? I was going to go out and sell, uh, an idea. Uh, with a small TAM to institutional investors, I would've got laughed out of rooms. that was the first reason that we were just like, no. Up until last year, around this time we had floated ourselves on government funding.[00:14:00] Uh, we did fine. Like we paid salaries. So that was like, well, some salaries and that was partially paid for people.[00:14:10] Jonathan: To be clear. You haven't, you don't owe people money.[00:14:14] Angela: Oh, no, no.[00:14:17] Jonathan: weren't drawing a salary is what you're[00:14:19] Angela: Yes, exactly.[00:14:21] Jonathan: Okay.[00:14:22] Angela: We also didn't have, like, it wasn't really employees at that point, they were all contractors. it was a project. If you very much look at like, you know, um, the idea of a project and that's what we were doing, then the next thing I thought was, well, we have to look for venture capital.[00:14:37] That's what people do in my position at this point. We're running out of money. So what do we do? Well, we go out and find money. Um, so then that, that reality check last fall was a harsh one, but an incredibly important one. And then that's when I decided, well, we need to make this work, um, by bootstrapping.[00:15:01] And so bootstrapping is in my, in my definition in Angela Hapke's definition of bootstrapping it is you find money. Among your, um, very close group of people. So in my case, it was, um, co founders and, uh, and I think it's typically they're founders co-founders or maybe a small friends and family. I don't even know if that's, is it friends and family round con I guess, would that be considered bootstrapping?[00:15:29] Jonathan: I mean, I would think so.[00:15:31] Angela: I feel like it's on the cusp,[00:15:32] Jonathan: your friends and family, certainly they don't have the sophistication to invest like an institutional investor would. I think it's more like, it's more like they're investing in you, not[00:15:45] the business. So I think that would be.[00:15:48]Finding Money When You're Running Out[00:15:48] Angela: So we got, yeah, so we got to the point where it was about January, February, we were running out of money. I think we had, you know, And I have no problem saying this because it is, it's kind of humorous and I think people need to hear the reality of all of this is I sat my shareholders down and I said, we have, um, one more payroll left in the bank account and that we're done.[00:16:13] I was like, so I don't know what to do next. I've done everything I can up until this point. And, and now, now I'm looking at you guys to help out. And, uh, that's when we bootstrapped, we got some people from the group that said, yep, we will help fund this, uh, for the next year. It was the best thing in so many ways.[00:16:36] What it did is it reengaged the group of people that I was, was working with, um, had skin in the game again, and I think for me, what it was too, is these are smart people. And they believed in me and the idea, and that was so empowering and just allowed me to, to kind of have the confidence to make the decisions again and like move forward.[00:17:04] So it was, it was honestly, the best thing that could have happened for us was to just say, No more going after institutional money. It's not going to be there. It's going to be a distraction. It's going to be overwhelming. You're probably not going to be successful. Your failure rate is high. Um, what else can you do?[00:17:22] And I was lucky enough to have a few people that were willing to say we can help.[00:17:27] Jonathan: Yeah, I think also, uh, it would be a very strange conversation with a venture capitalist to go in and say, um, our cofounders who are surgeons didn't put in any money of their own.[00:17:39] Angela: Now let's be clear. They like everybody had put in money at this point. Yep. Yep. But, um, to, to go to them and say, uh, they're not willing to put in anymore. Maybe, uh, it just would have been a really awkward comfort. Like there's so many reasons it would have been a bad conversation.[00:17:56]Jonathan: Like this so much money that you're a founders and co founders and friends and family can kick[00:18:01] in. So if you were successful at getting some institutional money that would be maybe multiples or orders of magnitude more money, perhaps. The founders and friends and family are writing much smaller checks than venture capitalists would. So does does not having that in place. What does that change for you and for the plans of the business?[00:18:21] Angela: I think for us, it made us focus on the business plan itself, focus on the cashflow models. I ended up having to build out a very detailed three-year cashflow model and understand it so well. And really, really focus on the, um, the minutiae of, of the, the product and the company and understanding that that has helped me make better decisions.[00:18:48]it's also helped us, hopefully, because we still know are not sustainable, but hopefully create a sustainable business model in the end is B because we are kind of penny pinching. it's forcing us to be really, uh, resilient and really kind of tight with our, with our money, like make really good decisions.[00:19:07] We're not going out and just hiring a bunch of people.[00:19:10]I think at the end of the day is the big question is, um, and I, you were alluding to it is, is, does this inhibit the growth of the company does not taking the big check mean that you're on a different trajectory than if you were to take that big check.[00:19:26] I think it's so individualized to the company, the founders and things like that that, you know, to answer that question, I think for us, I think it would have put us on, um, not a great path. I truly think that the one that we're on is the right one and the one that we should be on.[00:19:45] I think there's a lot of people out there that don't think you can grow without institutional based money. and I think that's wrong. I, I think, I think there's so many other reasons that you can grow, attracting the right talent, having a sustainable business plan that makes sense. And having a product that people want.[00:20:02] I mean, the list goes on. It does not have to do with how big, the size of the check that you got was.[00:20:08]Jonathan: we're not trying to be a Facebook or an Instagram where that growth, that growth is so expensive because it's yeah, like you acquire customers one like without even necessarily having a business model. the business model makes sense.[00:20:23] Right? You're the business model is you're getting money from customers, not, not from somewhere else or some imagined other place that you haven't figured out yet. So that seems pretty clear.[00:20:34]you're not going to get that hypergrowth, which I don't think you were going to get anyways.[00:20:39] Angela: Exactly. I don't think we, we had the model for hyper growth anyway. Why, which would have been another reason that I probably would've got laughed out of rooms. Right? Like it would have just been like, no, thank you very much, but carry on. we're not the pony that's gonna win the money race.[00:20:57] Right. And that's what, that's what institutional money is really geared towards. There's also a, like for us, we're a social enterprise. We have values and ethos at the epicenter of what we're doing and how hard it would have been to maintain those at the epicenter with, um, a really large check and an expectation with that large check to grow, grow, grow at all costs.[00:21:28]Jonathan: you wouldn't just be taking on money, you'd also be taking on some new bosses[00:21:32] Angela: Bingo. Yep. And that's another reason w uh, would have, um, been a really difficult path to find the right person. Um, we would've needed somebody that understood, uh, the industry understood the world that we were kind of in, that also had money that also was okay with us having, you know, security, privacy, and patients at the, at the center of our model.[00:21:58] Not, return on investment.[00:22:01]Finding Money In Kamloops[00:22:01]Jonathan: I think one of the other issues that might be interesting here is that like being in Kamloops, there's very few, there's very few people in Kamloops that are writing checks.[00:22:12]Um, I can. Count on my hands. The few that I know who might, but they also don't have the experience like, so, so who in Kamloops can one write a check to, has some understanding of operating a digital health company? And three is interested in some of the social side of things.[00:22:34]Angela: I don't even, I don't, I don't even know. So no one in Kamloops for sure. BC would be even a question mark. And then getting out of that, I mean, I'm. I haven't been in the tech industry for decades. I don't know all the names of all the people. And so just getting in front of people would have been absolutely hard.[00:22:53] High effort, low success.[00:22:56]Jonathan: because you're kind of the only founder, I mean, that's not true, like you have other founders, but you're the only one that is, um, operational. Right. So, yeah, you're, you're the one that is building the product, finding customers, managing the whole, the whole thing.[00:23:16] So then to free you to spend half or all of your time trying to find the, you know, that one or two individual investors who would make a difference, seems like, like a flat. Yeah, like you said, like an extreme amount[00:23:31] Angela: an extreme amount of effort. Yeah, exactly. Yeah. And I mean, when I put it, you know, and I put it back to my co founders to say, Hey, We're we're in a really tough spot right now, and this is what it's going to take to get us out of it. Um, and they said, yes, that might have been like, I mean, in this whole journey of Clinnect, that might've been one of the highlights for me the day that we launched the product was amazing also.[00:24:03] But when they like, literally came back and said, absolutely, we got you. Wow.[00:24:10]Um, and to be honest on it, then I was scared to ask because it was a big ask and these people, I consider friends and it was a really hard thing to ask, but then I also come back to, well, if I can't ask my co founders and they can't explain it to them , do I think I'm cocky enough to then go walk into a room of strangers and pitch it to them maybe, but like, probably shouldn't if I can't even pitch it to my own, you know, founder group. It's such a tough decision. Like even when you know, Steve was like, I don't even know why you're considering this.[00:24:50] I was a fit like. But maybe I could, like maybe I could come up with and why I can convince you, you know, but it's such a journey. All of this is such a journey, hoof. This one's been a really eyeopening.[00:25:11]Having a Startup Confident[00:25:11] I have a friend who's also like, so she's a co founder of a tech company in Regina and we are so similar in where we sit.[00:25:20] Like we are both the co founder the operational co-founder she's. She sits as the CEO also. we both are building a team. We launched our products within two months of each other. Uh, we both have little girls that are like roughly the same age. Like we're just, like I found, I found my, like my, my tech BFF and she went after, uh, institutional money.[00:25:49] So this has been a really interesting journey. And we like, we have FaceTime coffee every Tuesday and we talk about life and the products and just everything. Like we talked about everything and it's been so interesting to hear her journey around going after the big checks and going after, um, yeah.[00:26:10] The institutional money. And I tell you the amount of time that she spends doing that is her. Yeah,[00:26:20] Jonathan: Does she regret it?[00:26:21] Angela: no, no. She has a product that makes it makes a heck of a lot more sense. Um, uh, but it's been really interesting to like, have our like, compare worlds around that yeah, it's just, it's, it's an interesting world and I'm not, and I, I'm not saying that she shouldn't have gone for that money. I think, I think what the, what it's done is it's made a lot of sense for her. It's introduced her to a lot of people that have helped her too.[00:26:49] So even the introductions themselves have been amazing. it's so individual, but I think it's so attractive to go after institutional money that sometimes we have to just pause and really understand is this the right thing for the company is the right thing for, for you as the founder too, because it can change everything. Yeah. And I'm glad we I'm glad we didn't. I'm glad we are on the path that we chose.[00:27:21] Ask me in a year though. Maybe am I still happy with my decision?Outro[00:27:30]Jonathan: Thanks for listening to Fixing Faxes, building a digital health startup.[00:27:34] I am Jonathan Bowers. My cohost is Angela Hapke. Our music is by Andrew Codeman. Follow us on Twitter @FixingFaxes. You can find us wherever you like to listen to podcasts. We'd love for you to do us a favor and tell a friend. Thanks for listening. boop, boop, boop[00:27:56] Angela: We had Nora's birthday, third birthday.[00:28:00]She wanted for a cake.[00:28:02] it was, I would like a rainbow farm cake.[00:28:06] Jonathan: Yeah, of course like a farm that grows rainbows.[00:28:09] Angela: I have no idea.
27 minutes | 8 months ago
What's Keeping Angela Up At Night?
Show NotesAfter taking a few weeks off of recording Jonathan and Angela discuss everything from Star Wars to passwords to what keeps Angela up at night. There are some bloopers to keep it real and difficult conversations about balancing the users wants with the integrity of system. Angela and Jonathan deep dive into conversation to talk through a difficult product feature decision. In this episode listeners get a peek into real conversations behind the scenes of building a digital health product.Password hygiene is a topic that we discuss a lot in this episode, there are some great articles if listeners wanted to dive into that information. Here are some articles:Cisco MagF-Secure BlogPassword managers are a great way to use unique passwords as Jonathan mentions in this episode. Examples of password managers are 1Password and LastPass.Find Us OnlineAngela Hapke - @angelahapke - https://www.clinnect.caJonathan Bowers - @thejonotron - https://www.twostoryrobot.comCreditsProduced by Jonathan Bowers and Angela HapkeMusic by Andrew Codeman (CC BY 3.0)Transcript[00:00:00] Jonathan: oh yeah, we got change to not Thursday.[00:00:03] Angela: It's like perfect timing.[00:00:06] Jonathan: changed the lawnmower now it's a different kind of lawnmower.[00:00:08] Angela: louder.[00:00:11]Jonathan: Uh, hi, I'm Jonathan Bowers is wait, I'm doing the intro.[00:00:17] Angela: Oh, no. Okay. Okay. Okay. Okay. Okay.[00:00:20]Intro Jonathan: Hi, you're listening to fixing faxes. And I'm your host Jonathan Bowers[00:00:26] Angela: and I'm Angela Hapke. And so I haven't watched any of the Star Wars movies.[00:00:37] Jonathan: at all?[00:00:39] Angela: Ever at all. So I've watched bits. Like you, you always see clips of them or maybe bits and pieces, but I've never seen a full Star Wars movie.[00:00:50] Jonathan: At all? And you are, you are, you are a member of society?[00:00:56] Angela: Okay![00:01:01] Jonathan: Did, how does, how did you manage to avoid watching any Star Wars[00:01:05] Angela: I'm not even sure. To be honest. I, I I'm unsure of how this has all came about. And I'm one of those people that don't want to jump in in the middle. So I always felt like I had to watch the previous ones before I could watch the new ones. And because of that, I've just never put in the effort.[00:01:23] Jonathan: It is a lot. It's a,[00:01:24] Angela: It's and it's an effort,[00:01:26] Jonathan: it's a saga.[00:01:28] Angela: I've started watching the Mandalorian.[00:01:31] Jonathan: Oh, good for you. Do you like it?[00:01:34] Angela: I really like it.[00:01:36] Jonathan: It's really good.[00:01:37] Angela: is, only, I'm only on episode three, I think three or four. And, um, I really like it.[00:01:47] Jonathan: Why do you like it?[00:01:49] Angela: Oh my goodness. Well, it was. I don't know. I like it. It feels like an old, like, it feels like a Western,[00:01:58] Jonathan: It is, it is a[00:01:59] Angela: right yet to set in some time. And, um, I don't know. There's something charming about[00:02:13] wait, are you a big fan[00:02:16] Jonathan: I'm a big fan.[00:02:17] Angela: or a big fan? Okay.[00:02:19] Jonathan: I mean, I wouldn't say I'm a big fan. I would say.[00:02:22] I'm a pretty big fan. Yeah. I really like, I like star Wars. I like, uh, I've played some of the video games. Um, I have a board game, this like cool X-Wing game. That's that's quite fun. I bought just, just before COVID and now I have no one to play with. Um, Zach's too little and it's not Julie's kind of game.[00:02:35] Okay. Um, yeah, I'm a fan.[00:02:38] Angela: So I find fans always have an order that they suggest that other people watch the movies in.[00:02:47]Jonathan: I, I, my belief is to watch it and it's how I think I want to watch it with Zach when he's old enough is, uh, four or five, six. one two, three,[00:02:57]Rogue One, uh, then four, five, six, again. Yeah, that's seven, eight, nine. Then you can go back and watch Solo and whatever the other one was.[00:03:08] Angela: Okay. So I think I'll just watch them in release date order.[00:03:13] I think I might watch it with Alex. I think she's old enough to watch all of those.[00:03:18] Yeah.[00:03:19] Jonathan: You never, you never not old enough. Yeah. Yep, two.[00:03:25]Password Resets[00:03:25] Angela: But that's uh, what are we going to talk about[00:03:29] Jonathan: I have no idea. Honestly, I have no clue. Um, I would like to get to some community stuff at some point and some interviews or some guests, but, um, we can just talk about like, what's going on in product land. Uh, we can talk about password resets.[00:03:47] Angela: Password resets.[00:03:50]Jonathan: so , uh, it was hard to read your emotions in that meeting just now that we had, when we were talking about password resets. so I wasn't sure if you were upset, if you were disappointed, um, in like the way that product has been built, if you were disappointed in users,[00:04:03] Angela: God, you're going down a rabbit hole, Jonathan.[00:04:05] Jonathan: Yeah, no, it's just, it was very difficult to read you to read you on the video call. Like w there was very little, uh, body language to go off of. Um, and I was, I was watching, like, I flipped to, like, I often just flip to like see everyone mode so that I can, like, I just find that better.[00:04:20] Angela: Oh, I like the gallery view better on[00:04:21] Jonathan: yeah. Gallery view. Thank you. And, uh, yeah, you just, you were just seemed like maybe something was going on. I thought I'd check in.[00:04:30] Angela: this is so funny. my nonverbal can be quite loud sometimes.[00:04:34] Jonathan: Sometimes.[00:04:35] Angela: Yup. And I think when it's not, people tend to be like, What's up. What's going on,[00:04:43] Jonathan: The silence is just as[00:04:45] Angela: Okay. No, no. I think for me what it is is, um, Things have gone relatively smoothly with product development thus far. We have always kind of had this good, a flow of, of maybe not knowing exactly what our user needs next, but having a really good idea of what they need next.[00:05:12] And I feel like with this password reset, um, or lack of due to the the encryption, the end to end encryption that we have on this, on this product is I, not that I feel like we're letting our users down because I think there's massive pros to this and we have to communicate that somehow. But I also feel like this is like a bit of a disappointment factor with them that we can't just do a password reset.[00:05:41] Jonathan: Yeah, it seems like uneasy feature. Like it seems like something that everything does. I forgot my password. I'll just reset it.[00:05:48] Angela: Exactly. And maybe talk a little bit about why we can't just do that because I don't think I can talk that well about it.[00:05:56] Jonathan: That's fair. Um, yeah. So the previous episode, I think we talked about the fact that this Clinnect is encrypted end to end. We, we, as the builders of the product, can't see anything. There's, I mean, there's bits of stuff that we don't encrypt because we need to, like, we need to know who the referral goes to, that sort of thing, but we can't see any patient information.[00:06:16] So all of that information is completely hidden from us. The only way to unlock that is with the password from the user that unlocks that data. Right. So if they that's the key, that's literally the key. If they lose that or forget that they've lost the key. And so we can't go in and recover that data for them.[00:06:37] Angela: Exactly.[00:06:38] Jonathan: So it different than, uh, and the example that Chris was giving like Facebook, right? Like if you lose your password on Facebook, you just go in and request a password reset. Really, all they're doing is just verifying that you are who you claim to be. So they follow up with maybe a message on your phone or an email or something, and they give you a little link.[00:06:59] That's just proves that you still have access. Like you are. Still Angela. Um, the person requesting this password reset is Angela. So they go through something that they trust, like an email to send you a link, and then you click on that. And then that's like, okay, cool. We'll just throw away their old password, give them a new password, except that for us to do that, um, that would literally mean throwing away the key.[00:07:21] We don't have another key like that. That was the key. And so if you've forgotten the password or. Um, lose, you know, lose that password. You have lost the key to accessing the system. That's that's its strength. Um, but also the weakness from the perspective of the user, because now they can't access the data and we can't get it back for them.[00:07:43] Angela: And we, and that's the key right there too, is Facebook can give me back my password because they can see everything.[00:07:49] Jonathan: They see it all.[00:07:50] Angela: We don't see it all. We can't give you back your password. So we've had some users that have bumped into this, and we've had users that have reached out to me personally and gone we need this feature.[00:08:00] We need a password reset on, on, um, this application. And I think it's the first time that, you know, It seems like you say an easy fix. It's not an easy fix. It's not, it's not. Yeah. Um, it would compromise the integrity of the whole application if we just allowed a password reset. So we can't do that. Um, we've built this product, um, to be as secure and private as it is.[00:08:28] I mean, we just can't compromise that. So we're stuck in this really hard place where we have users that want to feature that they're used to seeing on many of them, their applications that they have without, you know, without even the need to understand why they, they don't have it here. Um, yet frustrated that they don't.[00:08:49] And so that was what you were seeing today in the call, I think was just my, my inner turmoil around really wanting to please the customer on this, but knowing, um, that pleasing the customer would, um, would degrade the integrity of the product. And I'm just not going to allow that.[00:09:05] Jonathan: Yeah. I think that's a good stance as uncomfortable as that can be sometimes, um, is to do what is right for the product. And in that, in that case, it's actually what's best for the patient.[00:09:17] Angela: exactly. And we do have to, we do have to go back to that. Um, and I think you often see that in our meetings is, you know, I'll kind of go, okay, well, hang on at the end of the day, what we're doing is we're ensuring a very safe product for our patients. We're ensuring that their information is being handled in the most appropriate way.[00:09:39] And, um, that's what it comes back to with this one again. Um, yeah, I'm just, I'm not compromising on the quality of the product on this one. But damn, it makes it hard to have that conversation with the users when it's, they don't understand it. They're not supposed to understand it. That's not for them to, I don't, I don't want to expect them to.[00:09:57] Jonathan: I don't think that they need to understand the technical details, but I think, I think there is an opportunity here to really show the users what good password hygiene looks like and why that's so important[00:10:10] um, we still, we need a way to allow them to recover because it's equally, it's equally bad for the patient. If,[00:10:17] if a specialist has received referrals and they can't get access to them[00:10:22] Angela: Exactly. Exactly. So, yeah, we, and I think that's why in the end, what we ended up talking about was, um, a multilayered approach to this in that we have like plan A, B and C around account recovery.[00:10:39] And how are we going to ensure that our users can get back into their account? Um, cause like you say, if you know. We can't just reset the password because that compromises it. But we also, can't not let them get back into it. Cause that compromises too.[00:10:57] Jonathan: Yeah, and it, it just brings up so many interesting problems in this space and it it's the, it's the intersection of sort of, of technology and security and, um, the users, um, you know, the ease, the ease of[00:11:10] Angela: Exactly and that's yeah, that was what was frustrated with is I'm like, Oh, we are the ease of use.[00:11:19] Jonathan: I do think though. I really do think that if you can somehow treat this as an opportunity to show our users why this is important, um, that will benefit them, not just for this product, but across all of like other,[00:11:35] Angela: Yup. Yeah.[00:11:36] Jonathan: if they're reusing the same password, um, that's not great if they're also using pastors that are just easy to[00:11:41] Angela: Too easy to forget.[00:11:43] Jonathan: Yeah. That's and that that's that hints at this like weird problem in, in, in security, which is you want passwords that are very secure. but you also want them to be usable,[00:11:54] Angela: but not too usable, but somebody could pick to guest them.[00:11:58] Jonathan: Yeah. So it's, it's very, very tricky, but there are, there are tools that exist to help you with this. So we require everyone on our team to use a password manager. And so, um, like no one, no one on our team knows any of their passwords.[00:12:13] Angela: Right.[00:12:14]Jonathan: It's, it's managed by a tool that generates this randomly long, like this random string. That's very long. It's very, very hard to guess. I have a high degree of confidence that, um, all my passwords are unique.[00:12:26] I don't even know what they are, and even if they were to, even if they were to, uh, find my password, you know, say, say my password for Facebook was compromised. Like somebody, all of Facebook's, um, the database and. Like let loose all of the passwords. And this has happened lots of times.[00:12:43] There's lots of examples of large sets of data being hacked. And you can go and look like, look up your passwords and see if they've been hacked. Um, but the only thing they'll be able to get into is that one account, they won't be able to then get into a bunch of what other things, um,[00:12:58]Angela: you're not using the same password for[00:12:59] Jonathan: not using the same password for everything.[00:13:01] Yeah.[00:13:01] Angela: So the, um, I think the interesting part here though, is you guys are a sophisticated tech company.[00:13:15] Our users are not sophisticated tech company or sophisticated technology users and, um, almost most cases too. Right. And so that's where yes, that's where the turmoil was that you were seeing on my face in their meeting today is just really trying to figure out what's the best thing for our users and how to manage.[00:13:33]And I think the solution that we came up with is a tailored solution to the users that we have. If we had some very sophisticated users, we would probably suggest something like you just mentioned that you guys use for them. It's not going to be the case. It would be more of a sophisticated account recovery,[00:13:56] Jonathan: Yeah,[00:13:57] Angela: but it can't be this time. Um, it'll work, it'll be secure, but it's tailored for our users to, yeah. And so, yeah, that was an interesting one though. Like I say, up to this point, we were. I think we've really, we've really like, kind of had like some bumps, but not, not too many bumps.[00:14:16] And I feel like this one was the first like bigger usability bump that we've had.[00:14:23]Jonathan: I'm going to come back to the, like the education piece here. I actually think that if, if, uh, if someone is relying on password reset, um, That like, that's not good practice regardless. Like you shouldn't be doing that. So, so, you know, if you sign up for a thing and you're like, wow, just whatever, I'll just put in a password cause they make me, um, and I'll rely on password reset. Um,[00:14:46]Doing a way with it passwords is, is actually a pretty good sss arguably that's an interesting take on security is you just don't have passwords every time you want to log in. We just send you a special thing in your email because we trust that your email hasn't been compromised.[00:15:03] So we just send you a thing, an email, and you just click on the thing and it opens up and that's, that works for certain types of applications. It doesn't work for us because, because everything's encrypted and we can't send you that thing, because we can't get in.[00:15:15] Angela: Yep. So you're, you're wondering, is this a really good education opportunity or an awareness opportunity for our users to say, Hey, what'd you call it? Password hygiene[00:15:28] Jonathan: Yeah. Good password[00:15:30] Angela: Yeah. Here's some ideas. So. Um, the only reason I hesitate and don't jump, I think that is, I just feel like, Oh my gosh, is it another thing that we're going to have to awareness, educate, et cetera, et cetera about, um, do we have the bandwidth to also do that[00:15:50]does it take a lot of bandwidth? I don't know, but I think when you're so heads down in a startup and then you realize your is bumping into something like this. And then someone like yourself is like, this is a great opportunity to teach them password hygiene. I just feel like, Oh my God, another thing really, um,[00:16:09] you're not wrong.[00:16:10] I'm just like, I feel like I've just fatigued a wee bit.[00:16:14] Jonathan: that's fair. That's fair. And it's a funny, it's a funny piece though. Like it's different if it was, you know, if, if, if users were, you know, boy, I wish it did this feature. Right. And we can, we can kind of talk about how, um, okay. I mean, we don't really see the value in that, at least not right now, but this talking about access to the whole thing.[00:16:34] Angela: Yeah, like this is integral[00:16:37] in into the application. Yeah, I know. Yeah.[00:16:44]What Keeps You Up at Night?Jonathan: what else keeps you up at night?[00:16:48] Angela: You know, so this was a, um, somebody said to me the other day, when I was explaining to them what Clinnect was and what we were doing. And he says to me, he's like, Oh my gosh, all that patient data. Doesn't that keep you up at night? And do you know, because of that, what we were just talking about with the systems that we've put in the fact that no, you know, it's very hard to get into an account.[00:17:16] And even if you're just to get an account, you get into one account know, that's it like, because we've put up, we've done privacy by design. That actually does keep me up at night. What keeps me up at night now is like, We got to get more users.[00:17:35] Jonathan: Okay.[00:17:36] Angela: what's keeping me up at night right now. I'm like, we've got to get more users and we're at a weird, um, balancing point because we have specialists and we have primary care providers.[00:17:47] So we have two sets of users. One type of user wants more of the other type of user on before they jump on both ways.[00:17:57] Jonathan: chicken and egg.[00:17:58] Angela: Chicken and egg. And so, so, you know, like, and I think that's why you just kind of use the double barrel approach and just kind of push both at the same time. And hopefully you get to that balancing point, but that's, what's keeping me up at night right now is everybody's just a little bit sitting back and waiting and I'm like, no, just do it.[00:18:25] Jonathan: And it's, it's funny, like back, we talked about this eons to go, how there is this, it is kind of a marketplace. in that you've got specialists who need to receive referrals from a primary care providers and primary care providers who want to send a specialist and you're right. They both want more of the other because it becomes more valuable. If there was all the specialists on the system, then all[00:18:48] Angela: All the primary[00:18:49] Jonathan: providers would be like, Oh, sweet.[00:18:50] This is, this[00:18:51] Angela: And if all the primary care providers were using there'd be specialists, clamoring to get on.[00:18:57]Jonathan: it does feel like a little bit more weighted towards one, like one way, like the primary care providers have no reason to sign on if there's no specialists. So, but the specialists can sign on, even if there are no primary care providers. Right.[00:19:16] Angela: Correct, but what would be the value for them if there's no primary care providers[00:19:20] Jonathan: No, I, yeah, I get that, but, but there's also no risk.[00:19:25] Angela: Correct? The idea is to get all the specialists and all the primary care providers from our area on. And if we can do that, we can accomplish a couple of different things we can accomplish. Um, I mean, I think eyebrows would be raised in other areas to go, Whoa, what, what are they doing in Kamloops?[00:19:43] They have all the referrals going through one portal. It's all tracked. It's all secure. What an amazing, um, system that they have happening there. Um, what it also starts to do is you start allowing your specialists and your primary care providers to accurately track the referral management and numbers.[00:20:07] So we actually start to see, um, an really interesting thing happening with specialists. They're able to look at it and as a group go, Oh my gosh, the demand for our service is here and it's even broken down by these categories. And what that arms them with is really interesting data if they ever want to sit at tables.[00:20:29]Um, you know, when they're talking about, uh, additional resources for their hospital or additional resources for their area, and, and when you have, I have a whole geographic region on one system where they can start actually pulling accurate data from that becomes really, really interesting. So that's our focus right now.[00:20:49] Our focus is to get the users on from both sides specialists and primary care provider from our area on and, and really, um, you know, that's why we call Kamloops our beta community is because we've, we do truly want, um, that, and I think it would be powerful.[00:21:06] Jonathan: Do you think that there's a feature that we could build that would entice the specialists? Even if there wasn't, there wasn't a primary care providers and possibly never going to be primary care providers[00:21:22]Angela: I've never thought about a system that didn't have both.[00:21:25] Jonathan: Well, I like the, what you just described, you know, being able to analyze some of that demand data. Um, and that's, I mean, that's kind of what you started doing in the way back in the beginning was looking at the demand[00:21:38] Angela: we still, we still do like the consulting arm of central referral solutions. We'll actually do deep dives into your offices and EMR, and actually pull out that demand data. It's hard, it's expensive and it's labor intensive. Um, Clinnect is a product that was introduced that would help you do that a whole lot easier and a whole lot cheaper.[00:22:04] Jonathan: Right, but it, but it relies on the data coming through from primary care providers. Could, could we build, is there something small that we could build that, that lets the specialists sort of retroactively start, like putting in some of this data, like, like it's not hard for them. Well, maybe, maybe it is, but, you know, could they take, could they take the referrals that they've had in the last month or quarter or whatever, and then just like, okay, I'm going to, I'm going to put these in and just see, you know, see where our demand is.[00:22:35] If that's, if that's valuable, then can we just, you know, type in all the referrals that came in and start to see some of that demand to data. And so use it as a bit of an, uh, a bit of an analytics tool, um, without, without actually getting any of the referrals coming through.[00:22:50] Angela: so Jackie has kind of built that. she has built programs that do the analytics around. So what it involves is, is us going into each individual office. And there's a reason for that to like, to actually physically go in their space is to understand how do they receive referrals?[00:23:09] Like as soon as you get a referral, is it put into your EMR right away? Is it not. Yeah. Like how do you manage those? And, um, with that tailored and customized approach, then you get true demand data. We've gone the, I like the extra hundred steps to actually analyzing wait time data along with that. So it's not just referral and demand data.[00:23:35] It's wait time data. But this is when we also get back into what we've talked about in a previous episode around categories. There's no categorization right now.[00:23:45] Jonathan: right.[00:23:45] Angela: Remember these, all these, all these referrals come in with no standard categories. So we do that in on top of, so like the, the, the consulting that we do is highly tailored and highly customized.[00:23:59] Um, it comes at a price, but it is very much worth it. judging from the results that we've we've had with giving that data back to the users themselves. So we're armed, we're literally just arming them with their own data. Jackie has built that, that tool. I'm not sure that it would be valuable in a, in a, like a smaller tool or a paired down tool.[00:24:27] Jonathan: Right.[00:24:28] Angela: I'm not sure how that would even look. And like I say, there's so many, so many things that we've learned through this, and this is why Clinnect came out of that. Mmm.[00:24:39] Starting this fall, we're going to do a big marketing push. Um, we, because we are focusing on the geographic area, we are literally going to go door knocking. Um, we're we have an intern that we've hired. Um, her whole job is, is to like, just go door knocking, have people understand what Clinnect is, why they want to sign up and then just literally help them sign up.[00:25:02] Just walk them through the process, which isn't a hard process, but it's, it's um, I think at first to get those numbers, so we talk about chicken and egg. We need one of those. We need the, we need one of those to tip. And I think to get us to the tipping point, we need to do a very tailored marketing approach where we go door to door[00:25:28] Jonathan: When you say one of those, you mean that like the primary care providers[00:25:31] Angela: or the specialist we[00:25:32] Jonathan: I th but I think it's, I think it's gotta be the specialist. Like what, like, there's no reason for, uh, like there's no use to it. As a primary care, but there's no use to anyone if neither one neither side is on that, but there's less use for the primary care provider to sign up because they can't, they can't do anything.[00:25:50] Angela: Correct. That being said, we already have one specialty on, so they are there and we do have two more specialties. Queued. If anybody knows anything about healthcare is that July and August are like classically slow down[00:26:08] times.[00:26:09] Jonathan: for everything like everyone's on vacation. No, one's responding to emails.[00:26:14] Angela: So then we're battling that right now, too. So yeah, I think that's why that's keeping me up at night right now. Password resets and user numbers.[00:26:26] Jonathan: Nah.[00:26:27] Angela: Yeah.Outro[00:26:30] Thanks for listening to Fixing Faxes, building a digital health startup. I'm Angela Hapke. My cohost is Jonathan Bowers music by Andrew Codeman. Follow us on Twitter @fixingfaxes. You can find us wherever you like to listen to podcasts. And please do us a favor and tell a friend. Thanks for listening.[00:26:47] Jonathan: It's it's almost as if you haven't, uh, been gone for three weeks, not practicing this.
34 minutes | 8 months ago
Privacy by Design w/ Chris Foster
Show NotesWe've deliberately chosen to design privacy into Clinnect. This means using cryptography to ensure that only the intended recipient is able to view patient data. In fact, as builders of the software, we can't even see the patient data.For the curious, Chris suggests these articles to better understand cryptography: Crypto101 is a great book for learning cryptography basics. It’s very long but thorough and free: https://www.crypto101.io/ The API we use to do this securely in the browser is the WebCrypto API: https://developer.mozilla.org/en-US/docs/Web/API/Web_Crypto_API Two of the models we based our cryptography on were the Firefox sync model and the Lastpass model. Breakdown on those here: https://hacks.mozilla.org/2018/11/firefox-sync-privacy/ & https://enterprise.lastpass.com/wp-content/uploads/LastPass-Technical-Whitepaper-3.pdf We highly recommend using a password manager like Last Pass to keep yourself safer on the internet. Many are free, including Last Pass.Fact CheckThe LifeLabs hack was one of the largest data breaches in Canadian history. An estimated 15 million Canadians were affected.Find Us OnlineAngela Hapke - @angelahapke - https://www.clinnect.caJonathan Bowers - @thejonotron - https://www.twostoryrobot.comChris Foster - @chrisfosterelli - https://fosterelli.co/CreditsProduced by Jonathan Bowers and Angela HapkeMusic by Andrew Codeman (CC BY 3.0)TranscriptJonathan: Check this out, Chris. So we've got these new pop filters. This is it. Without the pop filter, Peter Piper picked a Peck of pickled peppers.[00:00:09] And with the pop filter, Peter Piper picked a Peck of pickled peppers[00:00:15] Chris: So much better.[00:00:16] Angela: Isn't[00:00:17] Jonathan: then better.[00:00:17] Chris: I feel a little bit like the black sheep, because I am I'm that person who joins the podcasts and does not have a high quality bike. And I know as a listener, whenever I hear that, I'm like, Ugggg![00:00:30] Angela: Do you? Because I'm more like, Oh, thank God. Not everybody has everything in their house.[00:00:38] Chris: I usually just skip podcasts that, that are guests like me.[00:00:45]Introduction[00:00:45][00:00:45] Jonathan: Hi, I'm Jonathan Bowers[00:00:49]Angela: and I'm Angela Hapke. And I went camping for the first time with my family. Last weekend, we bought a[00:00:57] new tent trailer[00:00:58] Jonathan: the first time ever.[00:01:00] Angela: with all four of us. Yup.[00:01:02] Jonathan: Oh, wow.[00:01:03] Angela: Yeah.[00:01:04] Jonathan: anyone get any sleep?[00:01:05]Angela: So we bought it a popup trailer and Brad and Alex were on one side and Nora and I were on the other side. One half of the trailer got sleep. It was not my side.[00:01:19] Oh, I promptly when I got home ordered memory foam, like two inch memory foam toppers for the mattresses, because both Nora and I were like, Oh, heck no, we're not doing that.[00:01:34] we joke that our children are like drunk octopuses, trying to search for their keys when they're sleeping at night. Like that's a bit how Nora is. So yeah, it was a lot of like toe kicks to the kidneys and moving around and yeah, it was tough.[00:01:51] Today we have a guest, uh, the chief technology officer at Two Story Robot. Can you introduce yourself?[00:01:58]Chris: Hi, my name is Chris Foster. I'm like you said, the chief technology officer at Two Story Robot. I have been building web applications for about a decade now. Um, and before that I was into computer security, pretty heavily. I have a degree in computer science with a specialization in software engineering, as well as a graduate degree in computational neuroscience and artificial intelligence.[00:02:29] Angela: Oh my goodness. A lot of those words didn't make sense to me, but that's[00:02:36] okay.[00:02:36] Jonathan: you said, computational neuroscience, that's an obscure term that. So what, what does that mean?[00:02:41] Chris: yeah. We use machine learning models to better understand how language is processed in the human brain.[00:02:47]Jonathan: How did you do that?[00:02:48]Chris: We put some people in a very uncomfortable machine. It's called a EEG machine. So. They put a whole bunch of goop in your hair and sensors. And then we make you sit in a dark room or of what feels like a very long time staring at symbols on a screen, as you learn to map those to English words. Uh, we tried to replicate sort of replicate an experiment that was done with a much, much more expensive machine.[00:03:12] And then we showed that you don't necessarily need the $1.5 Million machine and said, you can do it. Uh, with something that's more in the range of $60,000. We did it while trying to learn kind of a language that we made up, which was something that was new too.[00:03:25]Jonathan: That's cool.[00:03:25] Angela: That is cool.[00:03:27] Chris: it was a fun project, but yeah, I definitely nothing like graduate studies to also make you feel like you have no idea about computational neuroscience, more questions than answers at the end of it, it often feels like.[00:03:39]Jonathan: You've expanded your knowledge a bit, but you've also expanded that surface area of things, you know, that you have no idea about. Um, which I like, I like that feeling. I like knowing that there's all this world of things that I don't know, uh, it feels like a better place than not knowing that that stuff exists.[00:03:55]Um, It's it's something that I talk. So I talk about this with the team every now and again. And I like my goal for our team is not to not to expand the circle of knowledge of things they know. It's to expand the circle of knowledge of things they know they don't know because that stuff you can go and learn.[00:04:18]you don't need to know all that, all that stuff. You need to know that it exists and that you can go and find it.[00:04:23] Angela: I think you're right. And I think that's probably a good segue into what we're talking about today. Ah,[00:04:29] Chris: It is because computer science follows a very similar learning curve. I think.[00:04:33]Angela: As the CEO of a digital health company. I know we're about to find out about how much I know about the topic of encryption and how it is more about knowing what you don't know and either finding the right people, uh, to do it or to understand what you don't have an idea of what you don't know.[00:04:58]What is Encryption as a High Level?[00:04:58] Jonathan: Yeah. And so, yeah, that's the topic of today is, well, we wanted to talk about encryption, um, because clinic is, um, what's called end to end encrypted. Which practically means that only the person who sent a referral and the person who receives a referral can read or see any of that data.[00:05:20] No one else can see that including, including us as the builders of this software. Chris, how would you characterize that encryption is discussed in terms of products and things that exist now?[00:05:30]Chris: encryption comes up all the time. And maybe from, from a layman's perspective, it can often seem like encryption is encryption, which I guess it's technically true, but how you're using that encryption really matters for how private your data is. Um, and it kind of fits into three broad categories.[00:05:52] Uh, the first type of category is the most popular of encryption. The, when that, um, whether knowing it or not, you use this all the time in your day to day life, which is communication encryption. So this isn't encrypting data between two end points that are talking to each other. So a good example of this is when you open up the Facebook application and Facebook goes and fetches your profile data, or your timeline data from facebook.com.[00:06:17] It's doing that in an encrypted way. So your internet service provider, for example, can't read that data, but Facebook can. So although there's encryption in place, there, it's not the same as other types of encryption that might protect your data from everyone, even including Facebook.[00:06:32]The second type is encryption at rest. So this is maybe if you have a file on your computer and you've decided to encrypt that file and you've used a password to do that. Or if you're using something like Mac's operating system's encryption feature. No one can actually open up your Mac and read all the data on it without your password. So if you're using that feature, then that's kind of encryption at rest while your Mac is actually unlocked, someone could certainly come over to your computer and access all the data.[00:07:00] But if you had your computer turned off and someone stole it and ran away, they wouldn't be able to read any of the data off the hard drive. So that's another way that is Christian has often used. And then the third way, which is. Probably the most privacy preserving, but is less common is end to end encryption.[00:07:19] An end to end encryption is similar to what, and you're using a tool like Facebook, but it's even if Facebook, as the person passing the data around, even if they couldn't read it. So for example, when you use Facebook messenger and I send a message to someone else on Facebook messenger, That person is receiving it.[00:07:38] And both of us are encrypted when we talk to Facebook, but Facebook in theory could read those messages. Um, Facebook does actually have an end to end encryption model. And if you were to turn that on, what it's then doing is the encryption is directly between me and whoever I'm messaging. So if I'm messaging Jonathan, that would mean that even Facebook can't read those messages because the encryption is directly between us and it's a little bit harder to set up and certainly more complicated and it makes building an application.[00:08:05] Have a lot of interesting limitations and technical challenges and all sorts of feature problems that can come up when you, as the company, can't read the data, but that's what we've tried to do with Clinnect to protect patient privacy. Um, just because it's so important, right? So that's what we've done here is when someone sends a referral to someone else, us a Two Story Robot or Clinnect, we can't actually see that data. It's directly encrypted between the members of the sending medical practice and the members of the receiving medical practice[00:08:35] like to be secure, like even, even like the baseline requirement is that the internet service providers should not be able to read your data. That is like the bare minimum for building a web application today.[00:08:45] But being end to end encrypted is definitely being a lot more forward thinking.[00:08:49]Jonathan: I have some questions. I don't think they're relevant.[00:08:51] Chris: I love irrelevant questions.[00:08:53]Jonathan: I was thinking like, are there, are there still cases of, of applications or services that aren't even hitting that baseline requirement[00:09:07] Chris: I mean, they're not, they're not right. Like the, the phone line provider could in theory, uh, re read your data. Um, I mean, there's, there's some advantages in some ways in that the phone line provider, isn't, isn't storing that fax but ultimately you have to trust them when they say they're not doing that.[00:09:23]Jonathan: one of the things about encryption is that it does it, it adds that layer of trust, or maybe, maybe the right word is you don't have to trust, right? Like a fax machine. You have to trust that the carrier, that telephone company is acting in a way that is not, um, privacy invading.[00:09:41] encrypting that communication. So it doesn't matter. Like we don't have to trust, like the fax operation could be run by bad person company.[00:09:50] Um, and they, they, you know, they can record all they want. It doesn't matter because they, they wouldn't be able to read it.[00:09:56] Angela: exactly, that's it? Yeah. And I think too, um, what we're also forgetting around the fax machine privacy issue is that. You could send it to the wrong fax number because there's no verification on the other end that they are who they are.[00:10:16] Right. So it could end up on any fax machine.[00:10:19] Chris: Yeah, I think that that's also has an interesting corollary to, to building a web application cause the internet works a fair bit different than the phone network and it say we had built this without that end to end encryption. There's lots of interesting problems that can happen. Um, now again, I've said that kinda like encryption to the server is the bare minimum, but it also becomes like even more important when you start talking about the internet, because with the phone line connection, if I was to call you Angela, it's probably pretty likely that like how that call is going to get routed is controlled by the phone network.[00:10:56] And it's pretty likely going to go to you where the internet doesn't quite work that way. Um, the way the internet works is through the system called BGP. Basically an ISP or an internet service provider or someone who's a big player on the internet. We'll sort of just say, Hey, I'm handling the traffic for all of these addresses.[00:11:14] And it's very brittle. There's actually been mistakes in the past where, uh, say something, I don't remember the exact countries, but, um, say someone, an internet service provider in Brazil has said, I own all of the google.com IPS. And then everyone starts sending all of their traffic to Brazil, even if maybe they were already right beside, at Google data center.[00:11:35] So it's also difficult to ensure how our traffic is even routed through the internet, which is why, like, of course there's people monitoring this and if you behave, you're, you're a bad player they're going to boot you out. But ultimately it's important to have that even that baseline encryption and end to encryption on top of that is even more helpful.[00:11:54] Um, Just because the internet works so much differently.[00:11:57]Jonathan: we've deliberately chosen to build Clinnect in an end to end encrypted way, which is kind of the, the most encrypted, the most encrypted way we could, we could build it or is there another, like, is there an even more encrypted way that we could build this?[00:12:13]Chris: I think everything is going to be a compromise. There's probably some things we could do that would have been more encrypted, but anything you do is going to come with a little bit of a sacrifice to user usability, right? So one, one thing we've done is when you send a referral, anyone at the receiving practice can access it.[00:12:34] That is the doctor or their MOAs as well. We could have made it more encrypted by sending it specifically to the doctor,[00:12:43] um, and never allowing you have to be sent to anyone else in the future ever again, and encoding it directly for the doctor's keys. If we had done that, that would arguably be more more encrypted because you're reducing the number of people with access to the unencrypted version of that file.[00:13:01] But that would obviously come with very large considerations for the user experience. So I think ultimately with these things, it's going to be a trade off between the level of thoroughness in your encryption architecture and the user experience. And I feel like for something as important as patient data, we still have to make some product compromises, but we're right on the balance and the sweet spot where it's an effective and a usable product, and also highly secure compared to alternate approaches.[00:13:31]An Analogy to Boxes and Locks[00:13:31]Jonathan: when thinking about it from the user's perspective, like we always have to. We have to explain this to them sometimes and help, help guide them to why this is better, why this does protect them, them like as, as, um, practitioners and patient data. Uh, and so we've, tried to come up with analogies to explain this.[00:13:55] So. Um, in explaining this in the past. So Chris kind of explained what we did in a very technical diagram. I tried to bake that into a different analogy and then Angela took that and also tried to explain that to some potential customers. So I'm curious to hear that replayed back to us.[00:14:14] Angela: Oh, my, okay. So what I tell people and let's go back to the primary care provider is putting together a package. This package is a referral. So this referral package contains like every thing about this person. So highly sensitive patient data. What I say is that when you take this package it gets put into a box that is locked. But depending on how many people can open it on the[00:14:52]Editors Note[00:14:52] Jonathan: Okay, Jonathan here. Uh, I'm editing this and listening to Angela and myself, trying to explain encryption through an analogy and we go on and on and on about boxes and locks and putting boxes inside of boxes with locks inside of locks and boxes and boxes and locks and boxes and locks. And it's very confusing.[00:15:13] Um, very hard to listen to it. So I'm going to save you all the trouble and we're just going to skip all that part and just suffice to say, we butchered an analogy for trying to explain encryption. It was terrible.[00:15:27]Back to the program[00:15:27] the receiving team gave us. And so that lock gets put on that box and that whole box gets put in another box with the key, uh, uh, damn.[00:15:39] Chris: built this and I'm not, I'm not following.[00:15:41]It's a good analogy. And you're, you're not. Wrong per se, but it's a struggle to use an analogy to explain the system because anytime you try and be even remotely, correct, the analogy starts to break down to the point that you might as well just teach someone cryptography.[00:16:03] Angela: don't[00:16:03] Jonathan: Okay. How does it work, Chris? What's this[00:16:08] Angela: And you really don't need to use.[00:16:10] Chris: Can I abandon the[00:16:12] Angela: Yes, please. Please do this, the analogy. So this all started from me saying to Jonathan, like the cryptography that we've built into Clinnect is sits in the background. As a user, you have no idea actually how secure it is, but it's privacy by design.[00:16:32] This is what we've done with Clinnect. And, um, but I wanted to showcase that I wanted a really easy analogy. Apparently there isn't one a really easy and okay. Okay. Well then, then go ahead. Yeah. I wanted to share with users, so they were like, Oh yeah. Cool.[00:16:50] Chris: There is an easy analogy. I think that the thing is, is you have to trade off being correct. Um, both of you, I think, are trying to be like, actually correct in the explanation, in which case you might as well just talk about the cryptography. I think if you don't mind quite a bit of oversimplification an analogy is actually not too bad.[00:17:11]Jonathan: So what's the oversimplified version of[00:17:14] Angela: Yes, please do.[00:17:15] Chris: The oversimplified version is I would say, imagine a lock that has two keys and one key can lock the lock and the other key can unlock the lock. Each key only turns one way, so you can only lock or unlock it. So the key that unlocks it is your secret key. It's the one that you just want to hold on. You don't want to give that to anyone else, but the one that locks it, that's fine because all it does is lock it. You can make as many copies of that, of, of that as you want and send that to as many people as you want. So when you send a referral. What you're doing is you're asking the Clinnect server, you're saying, Hey, can I have the public key and Clinnect server saying yep. Here you go. Here's what copy of that? And you use that to put all the referral data in this box and do you lock it, but you can't unlock it and neither can we, and then you give the box to us. And then when the receiving specialist logs in. We give them the box and they have the key that can unlock, which is derived from their password.[00:18:20] And we don't know their password. So we don't know the secret key. But they have that secret key and they can use that to unlock the box. That's the core. Now of course, the parts where that's over simplifying is there's actually multiple people that can unlock this box. Everyone at the receiving specialist can unlock it.[00:18:39] So that includes their MOAs, um, and that's, that's where things start to become complicated because what we actually do is we give keys to each user and then keys that represent the practice. And then we take the practices secret key. And we use each user's public key to then encrypt it for them so that they have their own kind of double wrapped copy of the practices key.[00:19:02] But now you can see that now it's starting to get complicated and you can see where it breaks down. So you don't that you, that's why you have to trade off the accuracy. We could talk about asymmetric versus symmetric encryption. And, and if you could explain it, um, it's actually not too hard, but maybe maybe a bit longer than, than 30 minutes.[00:19:20] Um, But it's honestly not quite that daunting, but I think, yeah, if you, if you want something for, for a nontechnical audience that is okay with a little bit of inaccuracy and simplification, then I like that analogy for it.[00:19:34] Angela: Okay, Chris, so people are going to be listening and then there, you're going to peak their interest. They're going to go. Huh, but this guy's talking about is really interesting. And maybe I do want to know a little bit more, where would you point someone who let's say is like me knows very little about this, but is really interested in learning a little bit more about it.[00:19:55] Chris: Google is a great resource. I think part of the, where the analogy breaks[00:20:00] Jonathan: it.[00:20:00] Angela: Just freaking Google it. God, I want to do something better that we, where we can like link in the show notes or[00:20:07] Chris: Oh, I can link in the show notes, but if you ask me offhand, I mean, I learned most of this a decade ago, so it's a little bit challenging to put yourself in the beginner's shoes, but I could find some resources. Um, yeah, I think part of it is that the analogy, the analogy, it skips the actual names of these things, right.[00:20:26] Which is asymmetric cryptography[00:20:29]Jonathan: it's it's hard to explain without explaining cryptography, how hard is it to implement? How hard is it to build this stuff?[00:20:38] Chris: It's simultaneously easier than you would expect and harder than it should be.[00:20:44] Angela: If that wasn't the classic Chris Foster answer, I don't know.[00:20:49] Jonathan: I'm going to sit firmly on the fence.[00:20:52] Chris: There's some parts, like the core concept of it feels quite simple when we approached it and we first started talking about the end to end encryption thought through some of the ideas and I thought, yeah, this, this feels pretty approachable. Um, but the devil's in the details with this thing, I think for sure.[00:21:07]it's easy in the sense that we've leaned on a lot of existing models. With cryptography the less you can do that looks like something new, the better. So the one rule of cryptography is kind of that you should never implement your own cryptography.[00:21:21]So we based this on a whole bunch of similar models, like the Firefox Sync architecture, as well as, um, Last Pass' security model. Basically anything we could find in existing systems that were established and have been around for years and had lots of people looking at them and were built by teams of experts.[00:21:38] We wanted to try and copy as much as we could from those architectures. Some of the complicated bits have been that, doing this in the browser was a little bit tricky. Some of the APIs are pretty new. We've been using what's called the web crypto APIs, um, which have just reached a stage where they are appropriate to be used, but they definitely differ quite a bit between each browser.[00:22:00] And it's pretty hard to get them to work for some things that you need in some situations. So, when we write out the whole plan feels very approachable, sensible. We're basically doing what everyone else has been doing. But then actually implementing it comes with lots of little gotchas that we had to work through. So. So I would say, yeah, I think like there's no other way to put it other than to say it is easy and hard.[00:22:24] Jonathan: I like that answer. I like that answer. what are some other reasons why we wanted to build end to end encryption into this product?[00:22:32]Angela: maybe I'll take you back to like when we were first talking about doing all of this, and I remember, I actually remember the day that I kind of dropped the bomb on you, Jonathan, where I said, I don't think I want Clinnect to see like anybody that works in Clinnect to see any of these actual referrals.[00:22:48] And I remember you kind of going. Oh, okay. That changes things, you know? There was a couple of different business reasons behind this. It seemed like the most appropriate way to handle patient data.[00:23:03] We don't need to see what's in those referrals. We don't want to see what's in those referrals. That is a hundred percent patient data that we should not be entitled to. Clinnect is a really small company right now.[00:23:16] I mean, there's only a few of us that work there. Uh, I trust everybody that works there. I think they're amazing. Um, what if Clinnect was to balloon into a team of hundred hundreds of people and I all of a sudden had an application where you could go in and see anybody's personal health data. That's not okay in my opinion at all.[00:23:41] It would've felt weird to add that in after the fact too. And I think a lot of the discussions that we had was, well, if this is the way that you want to do it, let's, let's build it right from the get, go that way, rather than trying to add that in later, which I think probably would have been a nightmare.[00:23:54] Chris: Borderline impossible.[00:23:56] Angela: Or borderline impossible. There you go. So glad we made that decision[00:24:02] We're a startup, we're a young company. We do not know where this company is going. We know who owns it right now, but what does it look like in 10 years? And would that have changed the direction that we went to?[00:24:15] If we had access to that data and to be honest from a social enterprise perspective, it is not the world that I want to get into with having access to personal health data and managing the risk around that.[00:24:31]Jonathan: We own it now. And what you're saying is that there's the potential that the Clinnect gets acquired and that acquirer could do something else with the data, even though our intention was, if we had an end to end encrypted it, like our intention was yet, we're not going to do anything nefarious with this data.[00:24:48] Um, but now we've protected against that from happening in the[00:24:51] Angela: in the future and I mean, that's not a protection for me or Clinnect. That's a protection for every user and every person that has their data going through us. It was a decision that I didn't make lightly that's for sure. But it also was something that it wasn't a hard decision to make either as soon as we kind of ran through a couple scenarios and I was like, Whoa, why, why are we even considering not doing this?[00:25:16] Chris: And also even as like technical lead, like I like that, like that feels a little bit of weight off my shoulders. Um, then knowing that, that we are creating this repository that is going to be such a massive target of personal data. Now I absolutely think, especially as we continue to grow, we should treat it as if it is personal data, put all of those safeguards in place, and operational policies and treat our security with the importance that we would as if we were holding patient data.[00:25:47] But it sure makes me feel a whole lot better knowing that, that we,[00:25:52] Angela: exactly. Yep.[00:25:53] Jonathan: And ultimately, like, what is the, what is the risk here? Like what is our exposure to, to somebody doing something bad? What's the worst that can be done?[00:26:03]Chris: if we're talking about absolute worst case scenario, is that someone could. Compromise our servers, or if there was a very malicious acquisition and replace the version of the application that comes out with one that has bad code in it, and it could wait for the user to enter their password and then start decrypting data and then push it somewhere else.[00:26:23] Un-encrypted that's a potential risk. It's. There's practical limits on that. So for example, you would only be able to compromise individual users and the rate at which you could extract data would be much slower than if you just had a giant database of say hundreds of gigs of private data. That's, that's just a database you can download that has all the private data where this must be a targeted attack against individual users.[00:26:46] Right. You have to set up a server to receive that data. And then you have to also store all of that data . So, so that is in theory, something that could happen, which is sometimes why end to end web applications kind of get some criticism, but is it a whole lot better than if we didn't have that stuff encrypted?[00:27:02] Absolutely. so I would say that there's still, there's maybe targeted attacks that could in theory be at risk, but. Again, that's why our responsibility should be to still treat the security of the application as if it was personal data. And I would say that certainly from a, hacker's perspective, I wouldn't say that that that's a, that's a small feat to pull off that sort of attack.[00:27:23] Um, it's definitely far more complex than, than some of the other than say, just like getting access to a database and downloading all of the data. Um, it's definitely quite a bit more complex, but.[00:27:35]Angela: when you talk about a targeted attack on Clinnect, it would be relatively unfruitful. Cause it would take a long time, whereas there's a lot of other low hanging fruit targets. And so even that alone, right. Is decreasing risk there too.[00:27:51] Jonathan: Yeah, we make, we make ourselves look less attractive than another[00:27:56] than another potential target. Like, I mean, and, and that, that has happened already in, in our world. Like the, the life LifeLabs was hacked and breached, and I don't know how many, how many patient records were exposed, but.[00:28:11] Angela: I can't remember. We can take a look and we'll put it in the show notes, um, link an article to it, but it was, it was a significant amount. I mean, I was one of the people that received, uh, a notification that. That my stuff had, had potentially been[00:28:31]Chris: ultimately nothing is a silver bullet, right? Um, I think also one of the other things is that cryptography is not a replacement for user education. Um, the users are certainly probably the more likely weak point, uh, would be someone attacking an individual user's machine or even trying to social engineer them.[00:28:49] Um, which is say, for example, calling them up and pretending to be Clinnect staff or emailing them and saying that they need their password. Um, those sorts of things that, that our user might fall for are probably the most likely risk[00:29:03] Angela: Yep. Yeah, a little PSA do not give your password over the phone to anybody[00:29:12] Jonathan: Ever ever[00:29:13] Angela: ever don't do it. People[00:29:17]Recommendations for building an End-to-End encrypted app[00:29:17]Jonathan: if someone wanted to build an end to end encrypted app, do you have any recommendations?[00:29:23]Chris: like we said, the core of it is pretty easy, but the hard bits are the hard bits. I think something that we already touched on, which is of course the first rule of cryptography is that make sure you, you feel confident in what you're doing and familiar and like, make sure you have some sort of expertise in these systems and don't ever create your own cryptography. Um, yeah, you want to, you want to always lean on, on what experts have done. So, so yeah, I would always say that like, if you are working with sensitive data and your goal is to build an end to end encrypted app and make sure that that you're not doing anything new.[00:30:03] Angela: I like that. I actually feel like you're demystifying. Um, the work that you're doing a little bit with the average, like. General population listening is I think we commonly think that you build everything from scratch, but that's not the case. And as you mentioned it's, and in this case, it shouldn't be the case.[00:30:25] Chris: Yeah. Yeah. There's absolutely some, some small adaptions. Like I said, that we've, we've kind of made like the Firefox Sync architecture or Last Pass are different products ultimately than Clinnect. So there's, there's some small adaptions, but ultimately, the architecture is basically really heavily leaning on what people have already done and then the encryption themselves, or the encryption itself, the act of actually encrypting the data.[00:30:47] Um, we wrote none of that code. That's all handled by the browsers through the web crypto API. So yeah, we, um, it's, it's not quite as simple, but in essence we say like, Hey encrypt this, and that's, that's the extent of what we've implemented for encryption. So the browsers handle all of that portion. Um, and if we had say implemented that ourselves, it just, it opens up so many doors for something potentially going wrong.[00:31:11] So, um, in some respect, it is, it is better to take the easier route.[00:31:17]Jonathan: A two story robot. We take the easy path.[00:31:23] Angela: It's all hard and simple at the same time.[00:31:27] Chris: and it's not the easy route in some respect, too, right? Like the easy route would be no end to end encryption that's easiest.[00:31:32] Angela: that's actually a really good point, Chris is that we could have done this , without any of this and law doesn't require us to do what we are doing. We are taking the extra, additional step and protecting patients and users. Been an interesting journey for me because I originally just thought, well, I just don't want to see any of it. And if we could build it like that, that would be great. And I[00:31:58] had no[00:31:59] Jonathan: an off the cuff[00:32:01] you just[00:32:02] Angela: off the cuff,[00:32:03] but it was a thought out decision, but it certainly wasn't thought out to the point of what does this mean from a development perspective at all?[00:32:13] I didn't know what I was getting our team into. So[00:32:15] Chris: Yeah, absolutely. That's and that's a fair point. The, uh, the non-encrypted end to end version of this application is a much smaller application. That is, would it have been much faster to put together? Um, but I mean, yeah, we, we also, we don't know of any other provider doing something like this for medical referrals.[00:32:34] So it's it's because patient privacy is so important that, that we wanted to ensure we took the time to think about the system and make sure we got it right. So.[00:32:42][00:32:42]Jonathan: taking the time to get things right. Uh, Chris, where can people find you and follow you? If they're interested in.[00:32:49] Chris: Um, I have a Twitter account and a blog with a mailing list. If you're interested in more technical details on stuff like cryptography or artificial intelligence, um, if you Google chrisfosterelli, it comes up with all of my profiles. Don't Google, just Chris Foster. I'm not the most popular Chris Foster, but.[00:33:07]Jonathan: how many more years until you're the most popular?[00:33:10] Chris: Oh, is that a goal? Do I have to commit to that?[00:33:13] Angela: Yeah, Yeah, you do.[00:33:14] Chris: Yeah. Decade 10 years.[00:33:17] OutroAngela: Thanks for listening to Fixing Faxes, building a digital health startup. I'm Angela Hapke and my cohost is Jonathan Bowers. Our guest today was Chris Foster. Our music is by Andrew Codeman. Follow us on Twitter @FixingFaxes. You can find us wherever you like to listen to podcasts. And please do us a favor and tell a friend. Thanks for listening.[00:33:41]Jonathan: I wonder, I wonder if the memory foam topper is like the pop filter[00:33:46] of camping.[00:33:47]Angela: Maybe takes that edge off[00:33:49]Chris: My camping tent barely has enough room to sit up. So I feel like I am the laptop mic of camping.
26 minutes | 9 months ago
Show NotesAt the beginning of the episode Jonathan talks about watching Hamilton, which was recently released on Disney+. Here is a link to the streaming service and the filmed version of the original broadway.This episode delves into the design sprint that Two Story Robot led Clinnect through, we talk about the ups and downs and how valuable it was. Check out the blog post about design sprints and the design sprint we did with Clinnect.Find Us OnlineAngela Hapke - @angelahapke - https://www.clinnect.caJonathan Bowers - @thejonotron - https://www.twostoryrobot.comCreditsProduced by Jonathan Bowers and Angela HapkeMusic by Andrew Codeman (CC BY 3.0)TranscriptJonathan: Can you do this? I can't do it just a second. I can get it.[00:00:04] Angela: sounded like a drip.[00:00:09]Jonathan: Yeah. It's, I'm not very, I'm not very good at.[00:00:12]Intro[00:00:12] Hi, I'm Jonathan Bowers.[00:00:17] Angela: And I'm Angela Hapke and you're listening to Fixing Faxes.[00:00:21]Jonathan: And I watched Hamilton this[00:00:24] Angela: was it?[00:00:26] Jonathan: so good.[00:00:27] Angela: watched it yet.[00:00:28] Jonathan: so good. It's it's so we've read a little bit about shaming for people who don't like it. Um, which I think is a little unfair. I mean, I enjoyed it a lot cause I like, I liked the style of music and it's really neat to see that in a musical also, we would never go see Hamilton.[00:00:49] Like, there's just no opportunity for us to go to Chicago or New York or London,[00:00:53] Angela: And especially right now.[00:00:55] Jonathan: Yeah. So it was really cool to watch. We had to watch it over two nights. Um, just cause it's, it's quite long, it's like two hours and 40 minutes. Um, but I didn't know. I didn't know that it was pretty much all rap and R and B and um, yeah, like it was really,[00:01:09] it was really cool.[00:01:10] Angela: well, I didn't know that either Brad will love it. I'm[00:01:14] Jonathan: It's so great. It's I really enjoyed it. It's very fast. It's hard to follow in ways because it's one it's like, it's just very quick. So you gotta, like, you have to be paying attention and it's a lot of American history, which I'm not, I don't, I don't know. I don't have any of the background knowledge for anyways[00:01:32] um, but it was still, it was, it was really cool. I really, I really enjoyed it.[00:01:35] Angela: Okay. I'm definitely going to check it out.[00:01:37]Jonathan: one of the YouTube videos I watched said that if, if it was paced the same as a, a regular Broadway musical, it would have taken six hours because of how many words they cram into two hours and 40 minutes.[00:01:51] Yeah. It's very[00:01:53] Angela: Wow.[00:01:54] That's very cool.[00:01:55]We Launched The Podcast[00:01:55] Jonathan: We launched the podcast too, that has come out. Um, I've listened to it. I've listened to it a bunch of times. Cause I edited it edited. I listened to it a bunch of times because I edited it and then I listened to it when it came out and I've since listened to episode five, which we recorded last week with our new mics.[00:02:16] And I hate, I hate the first four episodes. I don't like that. Uh, I don't like the way they[00:02:22] Angela: of course not. Well, of course not,[00:02:23] Jonathan: but we have four, I think four five star reviews. Yeah. There's well, one from your husband.[00:02:32] Angela: I was like beyond my husband.[00:02:34] Jonathan: Yeah, I think there's, I think there's some other ones, because if I look at the average yeah, we've got an average of four stars and then that one, one star review that they didn't leave.[00:02:45] Yeah. They didn't leave a comment, your husbands and then some other five star reviews. Um, but have you heard any, have you got any, any feedback from people.[00:02:51] Angela: Um, yeah, so I, I. Put it on my Facebook, like, just like, Hey, we're we're doing this. Wow. I, so heartwarmed by everybody. And people I haven't talked to in years, like sometimes decades that, um, have gone, like have saw the post gone and listened to it and then come back to the post to write me something.[00:03:19] Jonathan: That's[00:03:19] Angela: so lovely and[00:03:22] Jonathan: creeping on your Facebook a little bit. I was a little jealous of how many people were commenting on your, on your post about it. Cause no, one's no, one's commented on mine at all. Uh, that's fine.[00:03:34] Angela: it is like, honestly, there's a lot of my mom's friends that are going.[00:03:38] Jonathan: Oh,[00:03:41] Angela: Yay. Thank you. Friends of mum.[00:03:44] Jonathan: that's great. Everyone's everyone's dream is for their, uh, for their friend's daughter to become a podcast host. I think[00:03:52] Angela: Yeah, right.[00:03:53] Jonathan: it's just a proud, just a moment of pride. That's so great. I love it.[00:03:57] Angela: It's been really cool. And then like just the engagement factor around that has been really, really fun. Um, so it's, I mean, mostly the people that are listening, um, as of today are really just friends and family.[00:04:10] Jonathan: Yeah. It's not a lot of, not a huge audience at the[00:04:13] moment. Um,[00:04:15] Angela: so, thank you. If you're listening to this and you've made it to episode, whatever this is six[00:04:20] Jonathan: Episode six, if you're just joining us though now, because he couldn't deal with the poor audio quality. Uh, we get it.[00:04:30] Angela: I'm glad you rejoined us. Ah, yes. So we we've launched the podcast. We've got some reviews, some listens more, probably more downloads than I thought we would have.[00:04:43] Jonathan: Um,[00:04:45] Angela: Or did you, or[00:04:46] Jonathan: I was kind of hoping for a bit more. We have a, I went in this morning, we have a hundred total downloads across both the team, the teaser, and the first episode, I think there's, uh, like 30 or 40 downloads for episode two. And, um, yes, 60 or 70 downloads for the teaser. Um, but it's, it's interesting.[00:05:04] The pattern is different. The, the pattern is more stable for episode two, whereas a big spike on day one for the, for the teaser, and then it quickly, quickly dropped off. So, but it's only been out a couple of days, so we'll see. We'll see what today[00:05:18] Angela: And it's so much easier to listen to a three minute a teaser than it is to commit to a half an hour.[00:05:24]Design SprintsJonathan: uh, so we were thinking about talking today about, um, some design stuff.[00:05:29]Angela: before we started working with you, I had no idea what the design sprint was and I think that's, uh, it's super fun thing that we did. And I think we should talk about what that was and how we did it and why maybe what it was like from your perspective, my perspective and things like that.[00:05:51]do you want to talk about what the design sprint is to get us started?[00:05:57] Jonathan: Yeah. So a design well a sprint. There's this, there's this term that comes from agile product development and agile methods in, uh, software, but also other aspects of, of building things and this idea of a sprint. And it's this like short time window, sometimes two weeks, sometimes a week, sometimes a month.[00:06:19] It sort of depends on the project where you focus on a thing. And I don't love the term sprint. I think it, I think it connotes this idea that you are like constantly running the entire time. And then in, in the agile world, you sort of divide up your, your iteration cycles into sprints And so sprint one for focus on essence sprint two, we're focused on this and I've talked with people who kind of get the wrong idea and they think like, Oh, like, why isn't everyone just sprinting the entire time? All the time and I think, well, that's not sustainable. You can't, you can't, sprint every single day.[00:06:54]even sprinters, don't train by sprinting all the time.[00:06:56] Angela: exactly. Yeah, no, you're[00:06:58] Jonathan: So, um, anyway, so it's, it's a way of dividing up time. Um, and you kind of call it a sprint, but it's meant to be really focused on. You know, one thing or if there's a goal in mind. And so a design sprint, which I do like the term sprint for a design sprint, because it is it's short.[00:07:16]Um, it's a, it's a predefined time window. We don't do it like over and over and over again. We do one of them, maybe two of them. So our, our design sprint is. Basically three mornings. So usually Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday morning. It's very, very intense. It's very structured. We have a script that we follow and it leads us through a bunch of exercises. Um, some of which is just to like get the creative juices flowing. So we've got some sketching exercises that we do. Um, this fun thing called crazy eights, where you take a piece of paper and fold it in[00:07:53] Angela: I remember that.[00:07:54] Jonathan: Until you get eight pages and then every minute you have to draw something new on each one of those panels. Um, we don't share that stuff, but it's, uh, it's just to like get the creative juices flowing, but the goal is to, um, bring together, you know, the I'm the product expert. So yourself, um, the people that would be responsible for building, building the product, uh, like, uh, our team on Two Story Robot and it cramp them in together into this quote unquote room. Cause we don't do it in a room. We do it remotely and forces, through very short time windows, to like be creative and come up with things. And it's a really good way of getting information exchange happening, back and forth. Um, so we, we can quickly learn a lot about the domain in three days, we've become, um, we don't, we don't become like your level of understanding at it, but we get really close.[00:08:49] And then as an. And as an output to this entire process, as we collect collaboratively design, a bunch of features and screens that we think are the most priority, highest priority things to work on. Um, and then, and then at the end, we have a design that we can kind of start implementing with, which is, which is really cool.[00:09:07] Angela: From a Clinnect perspective. Um, when we started out with the design sprint, um, what we had was simply an idea. We knew the features that we wanted to add in, but we had no idea what this would, this product would look like. Um, Jackie and I had kind of sketched out some ideas cause we're super visual.[00:09:29] The both of us, um, just to kind of get on paper, what we thought we might want to see. And then we headed into this design sprint, which I knew nothing about. I w uh, I was like, okay. Yeah. And I think you sent me an email and you're like, Hey, do you want to try this? I'm like, sure. Let's, let's try this. And it was like, you know, three full mornings.[00:09:52] And, and so from what I would say is from where we were on the Monday at say eight or nine o'clock to where we got by end of day, Wednesday was mindblowing. The amount of work that we were able to push out in that sprint and get our heads around was unreal. It was super high value from our perspective.[00:10:21] So that was really, really cool.[00:10:24] Jonathan: Yeah, we've had, we've had that feedback, uh, cause we've run them a few times now and the feedback has always been yeah um, surprise at the end of how, how much, how much value came out of it and just how much understanding and how much tangible, like tangible design came out of it. I mean, it doesn't come out with fully fleshed out really high quality designs they're, they're pretty rough, but the, the, um, like they're really good bones on the skeleton, and then we can, then we can take that and start adding, adding all the flesh to it and it's um, but it's yeah, it's in three days, um, a lot gets done[00:11:01] in three days.[00:11:02] Angela: So when coming into it in February, we had like ideas and little sketches and it was cute to nice. And then by the end, I was like, Oh my gosh, we have all of this, which helped us push for the next thing too.[00:11:16] Because we were able to do that so quickly. And then we're kind of a bit on a roll that I was like, okay, like, let's get this going. So that outside of just getting the tangible designs and things like that done, it also helped just fuel the, the builds for the, the product too, which I found super valuable also.[00:11:34] Jonathan: I mean, another thing that it helps do is it, it really ruthlessly prioritizes what needs to get done because you can't, you can't, he can't address everything in three mornings. So there's a bunch of things that we really want it to do. But, um, you need to focus on the things that are most important or have maybe the most uncertainty.[00:11:52] Angela: I think, and I think the other thing I wanted to mention too, is it is. It's exhausting. Like, I was really tired after all that. Love it. I mean, I also being like the quote unquote customer in this, um, my brain was tapped a lot, like, okay, Angela, what do you think about this? Does this make sense? That, and so it was making like really, really quick decisions, which for anybody.[00:12:19] Can be really exhausting. And so I know, I remember after the three days, it was really, really tiring, um, highly valuable, but it goes back to what you said about a sprint. Shouldn't be like, you know, it's not sustainable. And it was like, mentally, it wasn't sustainable for me at all.[00:12:37] Jonathan: It's exhausting. It's exhausting. There, it's a lot of demand on you as the, as the expert. Um, because we, you have to download a bunch of information. You have to think and respond quickly to questions because you kind of facing a squad of everyone else on the, on the sprint. I think there was six of[00:12:56] Angela: Yes, there was[00:12:57] Jonathan: Um, and so everyone has questions. You say something and it triggers thoughts in other people's minds. And so they have questions now. So you've got to respond to that. So there's a lot on you. Um, there's a lot on, uh, so myself and my Maja a facilitated it it's, it's really it's. It has to be a tag team in order to facilitate the thing.[00:13:15]Um, cause there's a lot of this, a lot of stuff happening all at once. One of us is writing notes. One of us is sort of leading and facilitating the discussion and leading through some of the exercises. We, you know, it's a bit of a production too, is we've got music that we're playing and,[00:13:28]Angela: Oh my goodness. The music.[00:13:30]There was so many, there was so much commentary on the music. So Jonathan decided he was going to be the DJ. I don't know. And, uh, there was, you got so much flack for the, for the music that you were choosing.[00:13:44] I think it was mostly from Chris and I, but.[00:13:46] Jonathan: Yeah, we have some playlists that we use and I think one of them doesn't resonate very well with, uh, with everyone.[00:13:53] Angela: I was one of those people. It didn't resonate. Well,[00:13:55] Jonathan: It's it, but interestingly, so it's, that process has spurred me to, um, change, the experience I'm trying to create in all of my Zoom calls now. So having, having facilitated a few, a few design sprints, um, and getting some really good feedback about the experience, obviously I'm not going to put that much energy into , every zoom call that I'm on, but I've got a new camera now.[00:14:18] I've got a good sound. I've got to figure it out how I can, how I can quickly add music to the call. Um, so, um, I'm not a DJ by any means. No, I just like go hit, play on Spotify, but sometimes I can, I can find a song that actually reflects the meeting well, and then I play it. I play it out. I play us out and I've gotten some good feedback on that.[00:14:38]Uh, it's been fun.[00:14:40] Angela: Is that going to be like a job in the future[00:14:42] Jonathan: I think it could be a job now, I think.[00:14:45] Angela: But yeah, what I mean, I guess future being now, because we're all can, you know, meeting via virtually is that that becomes a new, a new skillset.[00:14:57] Jonathan: Yeah, at our all hands meetings, we have like a question that we ask. And it's just a fun question to just think about and discuss and just create something else to talk about. Um, One of them was what, what's a thing you'd like to learn. And mine, I decided was improv. Yeah, because I mean, I had just finished watching a, that long format improv on Netflix, uh Middleditch and Schwartz, which I highly recommend. It's really funny. I've always enjoyed improv. And so I was reflecting a little bit on what the design sprint is and sort of running, running, engaging meetings.[00:15:34] And I was like, this is it's improv. Like, how can I, how can I be, how can I, how could I improve that? I could be an improvization person, an improv comedian, or[00:15:45] like an[00:15:45] Angela: improv artist.[00:15:47] Jonathan: An improv artist. Right. I could be an improv artist. I haven't taken any efforts to like go and do that because I don't have any time, but it's something that I think about a lot.[00:15:55] And I w I really wish there was a maybe like a podcast I could listen to, to like, help me become a better at improv.[00:16:04] Angela: I love it. So anyone listening that has suggestions on how Jonathan can become an improv artist, please message us.[00:16:15] Jonathan: I think it would be a cool skill to have. It would be great for interviews on the podcast for, yeah. Anyways, I I'm, I'm excited about the idea of it. I don't know what I'm going to find time to go and do it.[00:16:26] Angela: Oh my goodness. I love that.[00:16:30] Jonathan: the other thing that I wanted to like share about the design sprint process that we have is that it, it kind of only works remotely.[00:16:38] Angela: You know what I would agree at first I was very, and this is pre COVID, so we could have met in a room and thought nothing of it. And we all. Mostly, except for Maja who was in Poland at the time, we all actually worked in the same building. So it would have been very easy to do this. And, and, um, the old school part of me that like, you know, has spent years in healthcare where meetings are, um, at first it was a bit like, Oh, No.[00:17:07] I want to, like, let's all get in a room and let's do this together. And you're like, no Angela, this is all virtual. And at first I was like a little bit disappointed, but then once we got into it, I probably didn't tell you that at the time. Um, but once we got into it, I totally got why we were doing it virtually and it made a lot of sense and it worked out really well.[00:17:34] Jonathan: Yeah, there's, there's so many things that you can do when you don't have the constraints of a physical world. Um, we use, we use some tools that allow us to very, very rapidly work on the same thing at the same time. And it gets really messy. Like we do this, um, we do this organization process where you're. You know, you're putting virtual sticky notes on a whiteboard and then somebody grabs it and moves it on you to somewhere else. And you're like, okay, whatever. And it's really fast. And so we can take seven minutes and, and categorize and organize a hundred sticky[00:18:08] notes and, and surface some meaning out of that.[00:18:11] Angela: And there was, um, there was a lot of getting used to that.[00:18:17] Jonathan: Oh, yeah. Yeah. The tool, the tool is we're used to the tool, um, others, uh, when people use it for the first time, uh, it, it, it can be a bit overwhelming and it[00:18:27] Angela: It was a bit. Yeah, but it was quick to learn. So it was overwhelming at first, but quick to learn, but I think it was more like my, my own control issues where I'm like, Nope, I put that sticky note there. Why is it moving? Somebody is moving it. And, but as soon as I kind of lost that need for understanding everything, because you can't during this design sprint, especially as a newcomer to it, as soon as I kind of lost that need to.[00:18:56] Understand and control, then it worked really well, but it was hard for me at first, but it didn't take, like, I like you adapt really quickly. I guess.[00:19:07] Jonathan: Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. It's, it's a, it's a really messy. It's a very messy process. It makes people feel uncomfortable, especially. I think, I think you sort of hinted that you were a bit of a controlling, um,[00:19:22] Angela: Oh,[00:19:22] Jonathan: freak. You're just someone who likes to have control over things. And I remember thinking, I don't think she's going to like this very much.[00:19:32] Um, but like it's, it has to work this way. Like you can't control it because it's so it's, it's quite organic. Um, and it, it needs to be[00:19:39] Angela: And I think it's that, um, you know, we're talking a lot about this these days about leaning into uncomfortableness and that's where, um, beautiful, messy, creative things come from. And that's exactly what this design sprint was at first. It was, it was, it was a bit. Um, chaotic messy, but from it, if you just allow yourself to be uncomfortable and okay with being uncomfortable in that moment, you can create some really beautiful things.[00:20:06] And, um, that's where I think we were able to get. And I was probably one of the bigger barriers at the beginning to doing that. If I'm going to be perfectly honest with myself, but it was good.[00:20:20] Yeah.[00:20:20] highly recommended design sprint. Um, like I say, didn't know what it was, went into it unknowing definitely, you know, was, was pushing back at first and then so proud of what we came up with out of it.[00:20:35] Jonathan: Would you say it was fun,[00:20:36] Angela: Yeah. some of the best things are, you know, like they just. They tire you right out, but there's, there's fun. Um, yes, it was fun.[00:20:45] Jonathan: Yeah, I really enjoy them. They're they're so exhausting, but there's so much fun.[00:20:51]Angela: Um, so our software, uh, developer, Jackie, that, uh, works at Clinnect. Um, I remember at first she had a real hard time with it because she is the kind of person that loves things to be beautiful and nice and organized. And you can see it from, you know, she's a photographer and her pictures are gorgeous. Um, you should see your notebook.[00:21:16] It's.[00:21:16] Jonathan: Our notebook is[00:21:17] Angela: It's amazing.[00:21:19] And so then when you're doing this design sprint, like, and you talked about this, like the eight square, is that, what am I calling it? The crazy eights or something? Yep. Uh, Oh, Jackie hated that. I remember. She was so frustrated because you have to draw something in a minute and then you flip it over and draw something else in a minute and you kind of keep iterating on what you had drawn last and you get, you know, and it's, it's just, as Jonathan said, an exercise to start opening up your mind.[00:21:46] Well, I remember the grumbles so funny. Yeah. But because she's also this person who thinks about things and it's very particular. I also feel like she, once we kinda zoned in on what we were, what we were looking at a little bit more, she was able to take it to like a next level, because then she was able to focus in on those details and things like that.[00:22:10] And that's why it's so great to have a super diverse team when doing it and allow everybody to go through their grumbles and bumps and. It'll come out the other side better for it. . I had actually liked to do it again with something[00:22:28] Jonathan: What we had planned on, we have plans to do another one. Um, we had discussed it.[00:22:33] Angela: Oh, right. I forgot about it.[00:22:38] Jonathan: I don't remember what about, but we had identified something that we thought needed some additional,[00:22:43] Angela: Well, it's probably our premium features. No.[00:22:47] Jonathan: and I thought there was something else.[00:22:49]We are always looking for other opportunities to do design sprints, because they are so effective. They're really hard to describe though. Like they're almost impossible to describe to someone cause we say like, Oh, it's really, it's really weird.[00:23:02] It's really uncomfortable. It's very messy. And it's, it works really well.[00:23:07] Angela: Yeah. And people like myself are like, no, thank you. But I trusted you. That's actually, maybe the, maybe the piece that we haven't talked about is that trust piece is I trusted you to guide us through that. And I think you need to find a team that you, that you ha you have to have that trust there, or else that does not work.[00:23:28] I don't know. Have you ever had a, have you ever had a client where. It's like it went a little bit sideways.[00:23:35] Oh, that's nice. You must be so trustworthy. Everybody's just like, okay, Jonathan.[00:23:41] Jonathan: it's, it's always produced very good results and, and it's always, it's always. Kind of the same experience. So maybe that's just, we've like we have really great customers, um, which, which is true, but, uh, yeah, I don't know how much of it is because it just works or that we have customers that are sort of willing to work, willing to take that chance a little bit.[00:24:02] Angela: Probably a mix of all of it. Um, what we'll likely do in the show notes is link to maybe a little bit more information about design sprints.[00:24:12] Jonathan: Yeah, so we're doing, um, we're going to do a blog post on design sprints that this can, this can relate to, . Anyway, so, so hopefully we get to do another design sprint, um, on Clinnect, on whatever, whatever feature we think[00:24:24] Angela: Oh Lord.[00:24:25] Jonathan: What else is, what else is coming up? What else is next?[00:24:28] Angela: what's coming up. Uh,[00:24:32] Jonathan: Hopefully, well, hopefully, hopefully on the next recording, we're going to have Chris come in guest and explain to us how all this encryption stuff[00:24:44] Angela: Yes. Chris is wildly smart.[00:24:49] Jonathan: I'm very excited to hear you describe it as well, because I've, I've given you a, um, a metaphor or an analogy or a way of describing it, which you took, and I think you change to give to someone else. So I'm, I'm curious to hear all of it, all of it, and then do it in front of Chris for him to shake his head at and say no, no,[00:25:11] Angela: you have it all wrong. Yeah. That is a hundred percent what is going to happen? And I'm[00:25:16] Jonathan: Yeah. So you've been listening to Fixing Faxes, building a digital health startup. I'm Jonathan Bowers. My cohost is Angela Hapke. Music by Andrew Codeman. Follow us on Twitter @fixingfaxes. You can find us wherever you listen to podcasts. And please do us a favor. Tell a friend. Thanks for listening.[00:25:33]Camping with the Family[00:25:33] Angela: I'm taking my children camping in our new trailer for the first[00:25:38] Jonathan: You[00:25:39] Angela: weekend we bought a popup trailer, like[00:25:42] a, a tent trailer.[00:25:44] Jonathan: yeah.[00:25:45] Can you fit a family of four in that?[00:25:48] Angela: yes, apparently we bought a very large one. Yeah. I didn't have a clue. We really, we didn't know what we were doing when we bought it, but we bought it and our children are so happy.[00:26:01] Um, but they're so excited to take it. So we're going to take it four on Friday night for the first time. Wish us luck.[00:26:07] Jonathan: Uh, good luck.[00:26:11]
26 minutes | 9 months ago
Financial Supports for Canadian Tech
Show NotesIn this episode we talk about different grants, contributions, tax incentives, and non-equity financing that there is available in Canada, specifically British Columbia and how it has helped our businesses. Here is a list of the grants/programs/incentives that we discuss and links to find out more information:NRC-IRAP - Industrial Research Assistance ProgramYouth employment grants through IRAP- Youth Employment, Venture for Canada, & New Ventures BC & Innovate BC.SRED (Scientific Research and Experimental Development) Tax program The company Angela mentions in the episode which specializes in SRED claims is Infinity SREDThere are many contests & competitions to apply for, if you are interested in more information we suggest starting to take a look at organizations that support the type of contest/competition you might be interested in.Incentives and contributions are great, we have used them along the way when they fit with work we were already undertaking. Just remember, it is better to focus on your product and less on distractions.Fact CheckJonathan mentions he is into a new marble league, if you are interested in checking it out it is in fact called Jelle's Marble Runs and can be found on YouTube.Find Us OnlineAngela Hapke - @angelahapke - https://www.clinnect.caJonathan Bowers - @thejonotron - https://www.twostoryrobot.comCreditsProduced by Jonathan Bowers and Angela HapkeMusic by Andrew Codeman (CC BY 3.0)TranscriptJonathan: When you move, when you move the arm, it makes this like sound like, check this out. Like when you hear that, Oh, whoops.[00:00:10] Angela: Totally.[00:00:10] IntroductionYou are listening to Fixing Faxes, a podcast on the journey of building a digital health startup with your hosts, myself. Angela Hapke[00:00:22] Jonathan: And I'm Jonathan Bowers and we have been infatuated with Marble League.[00:00:30] Angela: I don't know what this[00:00:30]Jonathan: it is the best sports to watch while there is no sports. Although the risk sports now, I actually discovered it last year, but I didn't watch it until, COVID times.[00:00:38] Cause I didn't think Julie would enjoy it, but she really likes it. So imagine, imagine, imagine the Olympics, but if if the athletes were marbles. Yeah. So they, they like set up these, these courses and they put marbles at the top and the marbles just there's a machine that like releases them at the same time and the marbles go racing down the track.[00:01:00] Angela: Okay.[00:01:01]Jonathan: but, but they have teams, so they have teams that are named.[00:01:04] So I'm a fan of the O'Rangers. They're the orange team. And Julie likes the Misty maniacs because they look like, or know the minty. minty maniacs. They're minty colored. Cause she likes mint and it is phenomenally exciting to watch and you get very emotionally involved in it.[00:01:22] If you pick a team it's so much fun. Yeah. And there's like there's drama[00:01:29] Angela: I'm so confused about like, given, okay. So, Oh, there's so many questions I have. Where do I start? Given the race? Like the track or the course?[00:01:44] Does a team pick a certain marble.[00:01:48] Jonathan: Yes. So some of them, some of them are, like there's some, some events that require the whole team. Like there's, um, there's a, a push event. Like it's a strength event and they all raced down and they have to push this thing along the track. And the further it goes the higher your rankings are.[00:02:03] Um, but then there's ones that are just, Like you're competing with all the other teams. And so there's just one marble and all the marbles have names. Yeah, they do. my favorite team names is team Momo and I don't understand marbles at all, but there's a team called team Momo.[00:02:16] And one of the, the team captain, his name is Momo. but then there's Mo Momo. There's another marble on team. Momo. It's super fun.[00:02:25] Angela: so captains are real people?[00:02:29]Jonathan: No everyone is marbles. they're all marbles. The referees are marbles. There's a whole like stadium of marbles, I that cheer and they hold up a little marble signs[00:02:36]Angela: And what, sorry, what is it called again?[00:02:40]Jonathan: It's it's called, Jelle Marble League. I think it's the name of the person who created Jelle's Marble League.[00:02:51] Angela: I want to say that I'm going to go check this out, but I'm really not sure that I'm going to[00:02:55] go check this out. Do you think my daughter would think this is funny too?[00:02:59] Jonathan: I think so. I think if you watched it with her[00:03:01] Angela: Like there's no bad words in it.[00:03:03] Jonathan: no, it's[00:03:04] Angela: Okay.[00:03:05] Jonathan: Um, You need to pick a team though, like go from the opening ceremonies. There's an opening ceremonies. Pick it. Yeah. There's an opening ceremonies. Pick a team, like decide on just some random team and that's the team you're going to[00:03:17] Angela: You got to stick with[00:03:18] Jonathan: It's awesome. Like, there'll be a, there'll be a moment where your team like comes back from the, from the back of the pack and overtakes, and you're going to cheer. I promise you you're going to cheer. So I think, I didn't think Julie would think this was funny or fun or anything, but she really likes it.[00:03:32] And, uh, we've been watching John Oliver and he he's sponsored the whole season. Yeah. So it's, it's a marble league presented by the, uh, Yeah, John Oliver, and every, every episode, a $5,000 donation gets made to a food bank in the name of one of the marble teams that wins[00:03:54] Angela: I love it. That's actually quite cute.[00:03:56]Grants and Goverment Funding[00:03:56] Jonathan: Yeah. It's super fun. Love to see how we transition out of marbles into something.[00:04:00] Angela: Oh, Lordy.[00:04:01] Well, so today's episode might put you to sleep. We're going to talk about grants, not equity, funding, and taxes incentives.[00:04:13] Jonathan: I mean it's okay. So it's not that[00:04:19] bad.[00:04:19] Angela: It's not[00:04:20] Jonathan: it's super boring, but it's an interesting, it's an interesting thing to talk about because, Canada, and in some ways, particularly BC is a very, is a really great place to start a technology company because of all of the government incentives.[00:04:36] Angela: exactly it. There's a lot of people saying that, Canada is going to be like the up and coming leader in tech, a lot of it has to do with the way that we welcome the way that we welcome tech firms, but also the way that we welcome tech talent too. Probably more importantly.[00:04:57] So that's, that's kind of cool. And I know for us, there's a there's, there was a couple of grants that we got that. It really got us over some super important bumps along the road. Like the only reason that Jackie's with us is because of the grant that helped, right from the get go[00:05:16]Jonathan: Tell me a little bit about the, about the grants that you received.[00:05:19]Angela: Backing up to about a year and a half ago now I was in contact with our local IRAP representative. So IRAP is the Industrial Research Assistance Program put on by the national research council in Canada here. And they have different types of pots of money. And maybe actually you should probably talk about, you know, kind of like more of the IRAP grant program, but what we accessed through them was a youth unemployment grant.[00:05:51]They had some certain qualifications that they had, and it was to be, like a relative recent grad from a post secondary institution. Um, so, and, and youth, so under 30, and I'm sure there was a couple other things like unemployed or underemployed. And right at the same time that I was talking to Kevin about that, I was also talking to Jackie who was still in university at the time about her honors thesis that she was doing, which was aligning beautifully with what we were doing. And then I was, I was thinking at the time, man, if I could afford to hire this young woman coming out of university, that would be great.[00:06:33] And right at that, But I think within that week or the next week, Kevin informed me that there was some, some money available around youth employment. And I was like, Oh, well, I have the perfect person and, uh, that's how we hired Jackie right away.[00:06:47] And I think they covered. I want to say it was 80% of her salary for like six months. And that was the only way I could have hired somebody. And I don't know what I would do without her. So thank goodness.[00:06:58]Jonathan: I don't think they're called grants.[00:07:01] Angela: am I calling it something wrong?[00:07:03] Jonathan: Well, I think, no, I think they call it a contribution. So[00:07:09] Angela: You're right. They did use that language a lot. Sorry,[00:07:15] Jonathan: yeah. There's a lot of, there's a lot of restrictions on[00:07:18] Angela: what we can call it. Yes. Thank you for, for clarifying that for me,[00:07:24] Jonathan: a lot of these funding opportunities, these government funding opportunities exist to help de-risk some of these investments, particularly that small companies might be making, like, you know, making a hire[00:07:37] Angela: is such a huge cost to, um, startups.[00:07:42] Jonathan: Well, it's the biggest cost usually. Yeah.[00:07:45]Angela: and in our case It would have been a harder road. Had I not. we found a perfect fit and, we had more momentum with that hire than we would have otherwise.[00:07:57] Jonathan: Yeah.[00:07:59] Yeah. And it, it, I liked those ones. They also incentivize you to hire, you know, take that chance on someone relatively new. So it's, it's also de-risking that, right? Like, you don't really know if a new graduate is going to perform at the level that you need them to, or want them to, or be able to grow into that.[00:08:18] But if, if, if you're taking some of that risk off the table and, you know, giving them a little bit more opportunity to grow into that role, that's I get, like, I really liked the grants for that.[00:08:29] Um, just, you know, just let's de-risk this opportunity, hire someone, hire someone new, give them their first job. and I think that aligns really well with, our, our culture a bit too. Like both of us, both you as CRS and us as Two Story Robot.[00:08:46]Angela: because you're more familiar with IRAP's other programs. Did you want to talk about that at all? Or.[00:08:53]Jonathan: So the one, the one contribution that we receive from IRAP was a, was a small project. So it's under $50,000 and same, same kind of deal. Like they cover 80% of salary costs. but it allows us to explore a product that we wanted to build, with very little risk and we still had to, we still had to sell it to show the ability to actually pay for the entire project without the grant, or sorry, without the contribution. Uh, but once you got the contribution, then you're just kind of on the hook for the 20% plus whatever overhead you'd have to pay to keep that, you know, keep the lights on and then you get to you just kind of just get to explore this product and try and build this product, without, without a lot of that risk and it may not have ever happened.[00:09:41]downside is we, you know, we ended up. It just didn't work. We didn't have market traction for that, for that product.[00:09:47] Angela: but it allowed you to try.[00:09:49] Jonathan: yeah. And yeah, it allowed us to try and we learned a ton about just the process of building, building products, which led to getting hired Fresh Grade and some other things.[00:10:01] Angela: I think the, the whole idea of, de-risking projects to allow the creative freedom, to really explore and research and, and develop new things, is the idea behind it. But I know for us it's, it has been exactly that. We should say that also the, the process to accessing these types of contribution is a bit as a competitive process. There's limited, contribution availability out there and that, uh, like we've, we've asked a couple times for projects to be considered and we haven't been approved.[00:10:39]But anybody that I've spoken to that has access to IRAP money has said very, very good things about it and what it's done for them.[00:10:48] Jonathan: It's a great, it's a great program. It's, it's not overly burdensome to[00:10:53] Angela: No.[00:10:54] Jonathan: it's actually pretty, it's pretty easy. Um, we, when we had our agreement, it was right at the right during the time that, NRC got hacked,[00:11:05] um, and then we had to do everything by mail or by fax and it was, Oh, it was, it was, it was unpleasant. Yeah. I remember at one point yeah. Fax. I remember, I remember cause we didn't have a fax machine cause why,[00:11:23] Angela: Well, no. Why would you,[00:11:25] Jonathan: and it took me all day to figure out how to send a fax.[00:11:29]Angela: so you should have just gone to your local doctor office.[00:11:33]Jonathan: Yeah. I tried like our copier, the copier in the building had the ability to fax that didn't work. I w went up to Staples and said, Hey, can I fax this? And they said, uh, yeah that's going to cost you a hundred and some odd dollars. So why? Cause we charge by the page differently for a long distance fax.[00:11:52] And this is, that doesn't make any sense, like[00:11:54] Angela: Oh my goodness. Yeah.[00:11:57] Jonathan: so. Ridiculous. and then I came back and like explored all these things. But by the time it was all said and done, I had spent an entire, I wasted the whole day.[00:12:06] Angela: day[00:12:07] Oh, my word. Oh, my word,[00:12:10] Jonathan: machines[00:12:11] Angela: fax machines. No.[00:12:14] Jonathan: know. So silly.[00:12:16]Tax Credits[00:12:16]Angela: the other thing I did want to talk about was recently we received, like SR&ED tax credits. And so it's our, our first year, because 2019 was our first tax year where we were, we would have had activities that would have qualified for SR&ED. And I wanted to talk about that a little bit because.[00:12:38]number one, I was so impressed with the whole, uh, like I, we had a company that helped us out and they were amazing. I hardly did anything and yes, I paid them to, you know, a commission to do this, but, um, I didn't even think we would have qualified until a friend of mine she owns a tech company and Regina had told me about how[00:13:03] she also did the same thing and she's like, how's it just, just contact this guy and see if, if, uh, you know, maybe, maybe CRS has some activities for, for last year in blah, blah, blah. And it was amazing. He was just like, got me started and filled out the application for me, submitted everything for me. And I was just like, I w I was amazed at how slick the process was and, um, what a great tax incentive.[00:13:31] So SR&ED is Scientific Research and Exploration and Development[00:13:36] Jonathan: Scientific Research and Experimental Development.[00:13:39] Angela: development, um, tax credit. So anybody that's doing, um, Just new, new specifically. It can be in the resource sector too. Right. So like mining and, and, you know, like engineering and things like that. But also for tech back it's, it's building something new, uh, which what we're, which is exactly what we're doing and as a majority of our time and effort.[00:14:01] And so, yeah, we did that through them and I mean, you have to. So when you have contributions through IRAP and then tax credits top of it, it just like, I was, I'm just so impressed with how, um, how well that all came together for us. And a couple of them were surprises too. And I was like, Oh, thank goodness.[00:14:21] Cause this year was. tight year, so it continues to be a tight year. So very like, and these are the kinds of things that help us go through these first few years as a tech company. I mean, you're really not profitable until typically year three. And so it makes it, uh, it makes the tough times a little easier.[00:14:41] So that[00:14:42][00:14:42]Jonathan: so one of the really interesting things about SR&ED is there. They're trying to incentivize technical uncertainty. And they, they don't care if it succeeds or not. Like that's not, that's not on the metric. So you don't have to do something that is successful. You just have to try to solve a problem that has never been solved before.[00:15:00] Angela: I think this is why I'm so impressed with these types of, incentives. Let's just call them incentives and blanketed. That way is so much of what we're trying to do. Has a low success rate. Yet there's so many spinoff benefits of it. Even if it does fail, we learn things. We can try new things. Um, like all, all of those, all of those spinoffs are amazing.[00:15:29] And we have, um, Um, incentive programs and, and either government or non-governmental bodies that are supportive of that, that at least trying, even if you fail, we know that there's going to be learnings from it. We know X, Y, and Z will come out of it. Um, and they love that. I love that because, so I'm such a big proponent of systemic change and how hard systemic change is and can be that the failure rate is so high when it comes to trying new things and trying to change things, um, that it's. So it's so nice to feel a bit supported in a way that is meaningful around that, like financially[00:16:17] Jonathan: Yeah. Yeah.[00:16:19] We did our own SR&ED claim in the first couple of years that don't rec I don't recommend doing that[00:16:24] at all. Um, But I, I did it. I sent it off and the, the person from Canada Revenue phoned me up and said, okay, you've done this kind of wrong in some spots.[00:16:36] Here's what you need to do. You need to fix this part here. And I need some other documentation here and send it to me whenever you can send it to me, send it to me here. And I sent it and they come back to me like, yep, this looks good. Um, I need you to change this piece here.[00:16:49] And I would change that and send it back. It took, it took a long time and it was really complicated and I was really frustrated with it because I waited too long. but they were so helpful[00:16:59] Angela: They were cold. They were collaborative.[00:17:01] Jonathan: Yeah. Yeah. I mean, he wasn't like, he wasn't helping me game it in any way. He would just like pointed out the fact that I probably filled this out wrong and I needed to clarify that, but gave me the opportunity to fix it. And didn't say like, why you did this wrong? That[00:17:14] Angela: wrong. Send it back[00:17:15] without help.[00:17:17] Jonathan: just reject it.[00:17:17] They just, like, I recognize that there was a problem[00:17:20] Angela: That's so lovely. So my first SR&ED claim was done and I'm going to plug this guy cause I think he's amazing. His name's Daniah and it's Infinity SR&ED. And, um, so he helped my friend Kristy. So Kristy connected me to him and literally with, I think. I don't know, three phone calls, quite a few emails, like, you know, a few emails back and forth.[00:17:43] She got all the information that he needed. He made our first shred claim. And, and literally like then Daniah emails me and he's like, okay, Angela.[00:17:53] So they've processed it. Um, you're expecting this much back. And then he like connected like my accountant, um, directly. And I was like, it did honestly very little and then just like money in my bank account. The company's been counting on mine[00:18:12] Jonathan: Yeah. Yeah. And it comes as a check. Like it's not like a rebate on future tax[00:18:19] Angela: Yeah. This is not, uh, a tax. Yeah. Uh, re is that what it's called a rebate or whatever? Yeah. Like it's not like a tax credit. Oh no. It's[00:18:27] called[00:18:28] Jonathan: is a tax credit, but you just get it as a[00:18:30] Angela: It's a check.[00:18:32] Jonathan: It's not deducted from your tax filing later on in the year. You just get it back right now and you can, you can like, there's no stipulations on what you spend it on. You're probably going to spend it on salaries, but, um,[00:18:43]Angela: yeah, I just, I thought that was really, really slick. It was a bit of a surprise to me that we were even going to be SR&ED-able last year. Um, now that we look back on it and I'm like, Oh, well of course we were, but just at the time, I had no idea. So it's always worth looking into, even if you don't think that you might qualify for it yet, because we didn't even have a product at that point.[00:19:02] Right. We were in the midst of building one[00:19:04] Jonathan: that's, that's good. Right? And There's some great programs like the Venture for Canada, which is a new program that I didn't know about. Um, they will back 50% of a, of, uh, uh, co-op student. So they have to be enrolled in co-op. Um, And they will pay for 50% of their salary up to like $5,000.[00:19:27] I think it is. Um, that's a super, super great program.[00:19:31] Um, but you can also stack that against another grant that BC has as in the, so Innovate BC has a, has their ISI grant. And then they have this other thing called co-op they're funny.[00:19:41] One is you must be corrupt students. The other is you[00:19:44] Angela: You must not be a CO-OP. Exactly. Yeah, we'll be hiring an intern for the fall semester with the, she is not a co op[00:19:54] Jonathan: The ISI that's the innovative innovation skills initiative[00:19:58] Angela: exactly. And it's a, it's a collaborative program between Innovate BC and New Ventures BC[00:20:04] Jonathan: Yeah. Yep.[00:20:06] Um, have you hired the person yet? Have you identified the[00:20:08] Angela: Yeah, we have, yeah, September 8th or ninth.[00:20:13] Just part time. So they, because, because they are in school right now also, so they're going to be going to school while they do this.[00:20:20] Jonathan: local or? Sweet, that's exciting.[00:20:24]Are Incentives All They Are Cracked Up To Be[00:20:24] I actually have a, kind of a, also like an opposite view to grants and tax incentives. Um, and it's, it's something that, a bit of a mentor of mine had sort of pointed out was that it may actually disincentivize companies to do the thing that they're supposed to do, which is get revenue from customers.[00:20:45] Angela: Oh, okay. I can see how that can be distracting.[00:20:50] Jonathan: you can get, yeah, you can get really distracted with pursuing grants and because there's all of these available incentives, it becomes a bit of a distraction to pursue them all and, um, you know, to go and, you know, try and get your IRAP grant.[00:21:03] And if you can't get it, then, well, you know, don't try. But really like if you just, if you took it, the approach to building your product a little differently, you might not need the grant in the first place. I still think there's lots of room for, for grants in certain applications. And obviously if they're there, you're going to go and try and take advantage of them.[00:21:19] But I think it creates a, a weird, um, I don't want to say like a lack of hustle, but like a little bit of a lack of a hustle in companies, because they just think that the government will just support them[00:21:31] Angela: Oh, that's and you know what? That is a, that is a totally fair perspective. As a company that has emerged from a government funded project, we could have gone down that rabbit hole or real easily. What I think helped us is focusing on the product that you want to build, focusing on what the users want.[00:21:55] And in our case, you know, the other stakeholders being the patients, what makes the most sense for that? And. Pairing that with, I have a bit of a background in grants and funding and kind of knowing what's out there. So that was more organic for me is that the focus was build this and then[00:22:15] is there anybody out there that has some incentives to help us build this? And if not, we're building it anyway. But anything and maybe that's the way I've approached it is everything is a bonus to me. The SR&ED was a total bonus. I mean, didn't, didn't expect that one at all.[00:22:33] The youth employment grant was probably more pivotal. Um, because I knew I did want her, I, I, I don't, I don't think I could have hired her without it. So that was huge. But when you're talking about IRAP money, that is an interesting one because you have to be very, very specific on what you're doing. So here's a really good example of we've been in talks with IRAP about potential projects and things like that.[00:23:01] Just as, as advisors through IRAP are supposed to have conversations with companies like us, about. And, um, there's been a couple of times where we've moved ahead quickly enough that the program wouldn't have caught up with us. Like we would have had to apply for a program, but by the time the money had come up, we would have already built it.[00:23:22] It would have already been done. Like we're like now we're beyond that. We're going on to the next thing. but that could have been a spot where we could have delayed it. Cause it was like, Oh, we'll just wait for that IRAP money. Yeah. Wait for the grant, wait for the incentive to come out and then yada, yada.[00:23:37] So I think you're absolutely right. As, um, specifically someone in like my seat, you can get so distracted and that was actually leading into the other thing I wanted to talk about too, was these contests. And these, um, purses and pockets of money were like these pitch contests[00:23:57] and I will tell you, especially as a female founder, there are so many that are targeted at me. Like in any given week, I am getting probably five to six emails about something that somebody would like us to apply for and be part of, and I'm that, that can be[00:24:22] Jonathan: Oh, yeah. Cause I mean the, yeah, it's the point of every business is to enter pitch competitions and.[00:24:29] Angela: I can't I can't I'm so, um, and last year he got caught up in that a little bit. I will say, like, there was a couple, I probably entered four or five, um, unsuccessfully in most cases, but. This year it was one thing I told myself. I was like, you're not doing that this year. You're not entering these competitions.[00:24:49] You're not entering these contests. Um, you're focusing on the work that you need to do. I believe that the success will naturally come if it's meant to be. Um, but by distracting me getting up on stage and giving pitches and trying to sell me and the company to a bunch of people is just.[00:25:09] Who are not, let's be very clear. These people are not my customers at all. Like not even close, um, just there was no value in it for me, or very little value, I should say, because there, there is, there is monetary value to it, but, and the chances of success are so low.[00:25:26] Jonathan: Yeah.[00:25:27] Angela: Yeah. So anyway, 2020 is the year where we focus on a product and we do not focus on contests.[00:25:34]The Oppression of Pants[00:25:35] Nora. my youngest went horseback riding for the first time when she was out in Saskatchewan[00:25:41] Nora doesn't like to wear pants a lot and she's potty training.[00:25:44] So she's in panties all the time. And so she, so she rode a horse for the very first time. Bear back in panties. It was so cute.[00:25:59] Jonathan: why should we have to live under the oppression of pants,[00:26:02]Angela: Nora's words,[00:26:05] I no like pants
27 minutes | 9 months ago
The product development journey of Clinnect
Show NotesWe talk about being a social enterprise, how long the journey can take for start-ups, and Angela reports back on the pricing exercise that she undertook to find the "right" price for Clinnect. Starting out initially as a government funded project, this company had a few roadblocks to overcome in becoming an incorporated for profit business; along with the typical issues to overcome like sustainability, scalability, and revenue.Healthcare issues are complex and Clinnect had to learn to focus on issues, we delve into the pros and cons of trying to find a niche product to address a narrow, but important, issue.Find Us OnlineAngela Hapke - @angelahapke - https://www.clinnect.caJonathan Bowers - @thejonotron - https://www.twostoryrobot.comCreditsProduced by Jonathan Bowers and Angela HapkeMusic by Andrew Codeman (CC BY 3.0)TranscriptJonathan: Wait, I want to get one of those. Um, I think, do you think in the audio world they use those, those clacker things like in the movies, those, um,[00:00:07] Angela: It's called the castanet.[00:00:09] Jonathan: it's called a castanet? You know the word for that?[00:00:12] Angela: Like the clackers like that.[00:00:14] Jonathan: No, no, no, no. The thing at the beginning of a movie where they go, you know, act one or scene four, take three.[00:00:19] And they[00:00:20] Angela: Oh, I don't know what those are.[00:00:21] Jonathan: Uh, I think[00:00:22] Angela: Sorry. I couldn't see you when you were, when you were saying it. And that's[00:00:27] Jonathan: a castanet are those tiny little symbols on your fingers, or that we should get one of those cat little castanets[00:00:35] Angela: I have. I have some, because my, um, my daughter uses them for music class.[00:00:42]Introduction[00:00:46] Hi, I'm Angela Hapke.[00:00:47]Jonathan: and I'm Jonathan Bowers and you're listening to Fixing Faxes, building a digital health startup[00:00:53] Angela: and we just got some new mics.[00:00:55] Jonathan: New Mics! Uh, This is episode five. We've recorded the first four episodes on our headphones. No, what are these called?[00:01:05] Angela: headphones[00:01:06] Jonathan: No, these aren't, these aren't[00:01:07] headphones.[00:01:08] Angela: like the standard headphones that you get with your Apple iPhone.[00:01:12]Jonathan: Right?[00:01:12]but now we've got these great new, uh, very cheap, the cheapest ones. We could find Audio-Technica 2005USBs as recommended by basically every podcast blog I could find. Um, but they were sold out.[00:01:27] Angela: Well, and I didn't do any research. You did all the research and you, I just said, tell me which ones to buy.[00:01:33] Jonathan: Yes, but you found where to buy them because they're sold out everywhere.[00:01:38] Angela: I know, I know the weird places to buy things.[00:01:43] Jonathan: So that was helpful because I was starting to panic that we were going to have to buy $300 microphones instead of a hundred dollar microphones.[00:01:50] Angela: well, the package was $200.[00:01:53] Jonathan: Yeah. Yeah. Well, it comes with the, it comes with the boom arm and the monitoring headphones. Um, the Princess Lea headphones. They, they hurt my, hurt my ears just a little bit. Cause I like, do you notice[00:02:07] Angela: The glasses. yeah, they dig into your head.[00:02:10]Jonathan: I've been wearing them a lot the[00:02:12] Angela: Oh, have you,[00:02:13] Jonathan: doing all my Zoom meetings like this with the microphone.[00:02:16] Angela: Is everybody commenting on the quality?[00:02:18] Jonathan: loves it. Uh, Yeah, everyone is saying Wow it sounds so good. And now Chris wants to get a microphone. He's he's got microphone envy.[00:02:27] Angela: That's definitely a thing in, in, and Zoom COVID days. Microphone and camera envy.[00:02:35] Jonathan: I, uh, we had a client meeting this morning and, uh, cause you can see the boom and the mic in the video call. And he says, Hey, what's that? I told them about the podcast and he holds up his really expensive microphone and say, well, let's. Let's compare. This is not, that's not[00:02:51] Angela: You're like, no. How about not?[00:02:54] Jonathan: he's got one of those pop filters and I think it's like a really cool condenser mic.[00:02:58] It is just sitting on his desk though. So he doesn't have the arm,[00:03:02] Angela: see, I don't know. This arm is like I'm that's most of what I love about this.[00:03:09] Pricing RevisitedJonathan: Uh, you know, what we need to talk about so speaking of the prices of things, so this being $200 and us thinking about, um, wanting to buy cheap. So this felt like the right amount of money to spend for where we are at in terms of our journey as podcasters. Um, but in the, in, uh, I think episode three,[00:03:29] Angela: I think it's episode three.[00:03:30] Jonathan: gave you some homework to go and use the Van Westendorp.[00:03:35] Pricing meter or price, price, sensitivity,[00:03:39] Angela: Price sensitivity meter.[00:03:41]Jonathan: Which is basically four questions that help you understand the pricing of a product. What are the results?[00:03:48] Angela: Okay. Uh, so, so we made the survey and I put it in linked it in an email, and then I just use my, my personal contact list and sent it out to a bunch of primary care providers and specialists that I know that I would hope that I could kind of ask a personal favor to[00:04:04] um, I sent it out to about 30 people, uh, nine or 10 of them got back to us. And there was some big trends showing up. So what you, what you have to understand is the four questions really kind of give you an idea of like the absolute basement. I wouldn't buy this because it's, it would be so cheap that it doesn't have any value all the way up to ,this is way too expensive for what I think the product is. So those are two questions and then the other two questions help kind of narrow in the, the, the sweet spot. So, um, just, , like what would you pay that's I, I think they use the word bargain and then what would you pay? And the, they use the word expensive.[00:04:44]And so what we did is we took all the responses, we plotted them on the sensitivity meter and before I say what the, it came out to be, I think last time, I guess, that it would be around $25.[00:05:02] Jonathan: Yes. I don't remember if that's recorded, but you guessed that it was going to be $25.[00:05:07] Angela: Well, and I I just figured it would be cheap enough that I could like, and I think maybe I was thinking that would be pretty, a pretty cheap price. So the price sensitivity meter put us in a large enough range of people, like on a, like a distribution graph. That would pay for Clinnect on a monthly subscription based model, between $50 and $75.[00:05:35] Jonathan: more than what you had thought.[00:05:37] Angela: A little bit more than what I thought now let's back that up. I think the original guesstimate that I gave, um, didn't have all the features that we were going to include in the basic model anyway. So we've upped the basic model to be kind of a basic plus model. And then what we did is we gave a really quick video on what we have in the product right now, and what features are coming within that basic model.[00:06:04]Then ask them to do, to answer the four questions. So we gave them a really good idea of what they're going to get for, for their money.[00:06:10] Jonathan: I love that you went out and talked with people[00:06:12] Angela: yeah,[00:06:13] Jonathan: feedback that was, uh, w would you say it was more encouraging to get those answers back the way you did?[00:06:20] Angela: I think when you build a product, your scared to price it, I think that's a scary thing to price it because now you're building a product, but now you're actually asking a very specific amount of money for it and asking people to take that out to their pocket and give it to you. So it was, it was a very, very vulnerable exercise for me.[00:06:42] And, um, yeah, I was nervous to do it. So happy I did though. Like, yeah, just so yeah, really, really good feedback really. And actually. Even since then it's caused a couple of people to come back at me and ask me like further questions and things like that, which is really great. Yeah. Like one of them was asking about, um, and not to get into the nitty gritty of it, but, well, how many users are you going to have per account?[00:07:09] And are you going to charge per users? Are you going to cut charge per account and with so many users and yada yada yada. So she had already started to get it into her head and was asking really good questions. And I said that I was like, Ooh, you've zeroed in on something that we've been talking about a lot.[00:07:23] And so I used that interaction then to ask her, I said, well, we're thinking about this. What do you think? And she was like, Oh yeah, that makes a lot of sense. And so just like stealing more information out of, out of everyone was yeah,[00:07:37] Jonathan: It's not stealing information.[00:07:39] Angela: not. It's it's asking your customer what they want. Yes.[00:07:44] Jonathan: Yeah. No, that's that's that's so cool. I think it's exciting that you have gone out talk to some folks, got some real feedback and got some additional feedback.[00:07:53] Angela: Yeah, highly recommend that anybody who's thinking and being scared about the pricing process, just ask.[00:08:00] Jonathan: I like that the, that price sensitivity model a van Westendorp is, is those questions. Cause you can just take it kind of copy and paste it, put it in there, remove some of the emotion a little bit, because it's not like you're on the phone talking with someone. You can just send this out somewhat anonymously.[00:08:15] It's not really anonymous, but you kind of send it out and it just removes that awkwardness and weirdness. And that anxiety, anxiety that you might feel.[00:08:23] Angela: Yeah. And I think that's exactly what I was feeling. So when I put it into a survey and I just, I think I threw it into Google forms or something like that and sent it out and just said, and I didn't ask for any identifying information. So, and actually said that right away, like, I'm not asking for your name.[00:08:38] Will you, you know that I know you were like participant number one, you can kind of anonymous anonymously do it. And I think that felt good for both myself and who I was asking to do it because these were for my personal contact list. So they know me quite well.[00:08:55]3 Years in the Making[00:08:55] Jonathan: what you want us to talk about today was the product development journey of Clinnect.[00:09:03] Angela: I want to talk about that today because. Up to this point, we've been talking a lot about like either current state or, um, like what we're doing right now. Hence the pricing thing and things like that. But I wanted to give a little bit of background about how we got to where we've got to and how long that journey took and how we've navigated along the way.[00:09:28] Um, just so maybe people listening can understand what that journey typically looks like, because so often we read, you know, success stories and you kind of get the story from the success on and not so much the really nitty gritty crap that led you up to that. And I'm not saying that our journey has had a lot of crap in it, but it's been a lot of, a lot of bumps along the way.[00:09:52] And I think talking about that, um, is hopefully good for people to hear. And, and maybe if they're in the middle of that keeps them, keeps them motivated to keep going.[00:10:05]Jonathan: how long of a journey has it been?[00:10:06] Angela: It has been three and a half years to now.[00:10:13] Jonathan: Till now, and we've[00:10:14] Angela: And we've just launched.[00:10:15] Jonathan: launched.[00:10:16] Angela: Yeah.[00:10:17] Jonathan: And we've only, we've only really been building, building the product, uh, for three[00:10:23] Angela: Three months. Yeah. Two or three months. Yup. Yup. Yeah. And we just launched three weeks ago.[00:10:30] Jonathan: you didn't have the goal of creating Clinnect[00:10:34] Angela: Nope. Nope, absolutely[00:10:36] Jonathan: w What was step one?[00:10:38] Angela: Uh, at the time I was working, um, at the hospital here in Kamloops as a project manager. And there was a, there was some government funding coming out for innovative projects that were led by physicians. And so there was a group of physicians in Kamloops, uh, the general surgeons that wanted to apply for this money.[00:11:01] But they needed to have a project manager attached to it. And at the time I was working four days a week, um, and was recommended to them too, that maybe I could take this project on for the fifth day.[00:11:15]Jonathan: This was a side hustle.[00:11:16]Angela: Total side hustle. And so what it started off as. Was the general surgeons in town really just wanted a place to centralize all of the referrals and pool them.[00:11:29] So equally distribute, distribute them or unequally distribute them purposefully, uh, among each of them. And so I thought, Ooh, that's kind of a cool project. I would love to try something like that. So that's where we started out. We got funding, um, in the beginning just to kind of do. Like analysis stuff, like typical government funding, you know, go out and do your, your SWOT analysis and your needs analysis and understand, you know, current state, blah, blah, blah.[00:11:58]We already kind of knew what we wanted and it seemed to fit with the analysis. So then we started to build a very manual process for centralizing referrals from primary care providers in the Kamloops catchment area, um, for general surgery. So we started that in August of 2017.[00:12:20] So that's coming up on three years ago. It was by December that year that we realized that we were, we might be onto something. The process that we were building along with the data that we were grabbing was becoming talked about a lot, not necessarily our data, but, um, in the, in the way of like wait time, data and referrals and centralized processes and things like that.[00:12:44]We also thought that maybe it would get absorbed by like a health authority or ministry or something like that. So we built it in that way that we thought, well, somebody else will take this on in the end.[00:12:55]Jonathan: As in, like, just take over, take over whatever process you've defined?[00:12:59] Angela: And there was a lot of advisors even advising us down that road was that if you build a good enough process, the, the health authority of the ministry will, will likely, um, grab that and integrate it into some kind of workflow that they already have. So we got pushed back on that.[00:13:18]Jonathan: From the health authorities?[00:13:21] Angela: So what ended up happening in about the same time that we were doing all of this, we incorporated Central Referral Solutions. So when a government funded project gets incorporated, some eyebrows get raised sometimes, and it wasn't an overly popular thing to do. Um, but we needed to do it for ourselves.[00:13:45] Like we were, there was a lot of us that were, that were, you know, shareholders in it or like stakeholders at the time and shareholders now. And we, yeah, we just kind of thought that we were onto something. So we incorporated, and so then we were seen as this, like this corporate entity that, you know, and there was just this push pull.[00:14:06] We were also starting to talk about wait times in a way that wasn't overly palatable at the time, because we wanted to talk about the whole wait time journey. And I think we'll probably do we'll deep dive into that at another time. Yeah. Yeah, because there's, that's a whole episode in and of itself, I think right[00:14:28] Jonathan: Well then we'll save that for another[00:14:30] Angela: Yeah. and then at the end, you know, when we started to bump into things, people weren't really overly welcoming to take this on from a health authority or a ministry, um, perspective. Uh, we decided to monetize it because that made the most sense. Um, and in a way that we knew we were a social enterprise, uh, we still incorporated and things like that.[00:14:52]A For Profit Social Enterprise[00:14:52]Jonathan: So you're a for profit[00:14:54] Angela: Yup.[00:14:55] Jonathan: company, right. Your company. So that by definition is for profit, but a social enterprise[00:15:00] Angela: but a social enterprise. So a social enterprise has not investors and making money at its core ethos, but rather, um, a social good at its core ethos and its core philosophy. And for us that we're not out to make a ton of money to make a change in a system.[00:15:22] And so that's why we call ourselves a social enterprise, but we are for profit. And I think that's another reason that it's been so hard to try and explain who we are and what we are. And especially in the beginning, because we weren't maybe even comfortable in her own skin in saying that. And I'm, now that I'm like saying it, I'm like, I don't even know if I still am.[00:15:41]Um, but. We knew that we knew that we were onto something, but we also knew that we could make a lot of good with it and do a lot of good with it.[00:15:48] Jonathan: Um, I mean, I, I agree with you, like I've, I've, I, I've done a bit of mentoring with social enterprises, mostly in the non profit side of things. And one of the things that they often struggle with is how to be sustainable, how to, how to do what they're doing. And, um, yeah, I guess scale that up. Right? So there's, so they're often so dependent on grants and they spend so much time just applying for grant money and not revenue from some product or service that they're offering that can, that can sustain the growth of this social thing that they're trying to do. Some, some organizations are very, very good at this. Most struggle. So you're describing, uh, an organization that is almost engineered in a way too, to be sustainable. There's the profit side, which sustains itself and sustains its growth activities. And then the the impact of the, um, of the activities you do have, have a social good. But you do have to monetize that, which you talked about, uh, just a second ago, you said you're trying to monetize it.[00:16:55] walk me through that a little bit. at a basic level, I think people can understand, like we're charging for the service,[00:17:00] Angela: Yes. So maybe what I'll do is I'll talk about a little bit about how we got there and I, what you just summed up doesn't happen easily and quickly, um, it's not as, as, as pretty as the summary that you just gave. Uh, it's usually ugly and bumpy along the way. And it has been a little bit ugly and bumpy for us along the way.[00:17:22] So what we started with was general surgery in town and I call it kind of like our R & D department is, um, we've created the central intake and the central referrals, um, to go and then be pooled among the groups of surgeons. And so in doing this, we were able to trial like a whole bunch of different types of workflows.[00:17:41] We were able to even trial, like the way we say things, which in healthcare can be the, be all and end all of things. Yeah.[00:17:48] Jonathan: Say things to, to patients or[00:17:50] Angela: okay. Well even just like literally the wording that would be on a referral form. Yeah. The impression that that word gives when you read it versus what you, the intended meaning versus what maybe the reader means.[00:18:04] And we've actually had a couple bumps along that way. Also the development of categories, referral categories. And we've talked a little bit about this in the past, but like Clinnect itself has started to create the idea that we should have a very strict set of categories that referrals come in. And like, even that we trialed with general surgery. Just really help in helping us understand what does a wait time mean? And then we've also done a little bit of consulting to help us gain even further insight. And we always say that. You know that this further insight will just help us develop the product even more. So in doing all of this with general surgery, kind of being our R & D department, we were able to go, okay, we have this, we were able to get a really nice workflow going, except.[00:18:53] It wasn't scalable. It wasn't sustainable. We were hitting we're bumping into exactly what you're talking about with, you know, the social enterprises and not being able to maybe get over that hump. We were able to get over that hump with Clinnect. And so that's where we were able to say, you know what, now we are, we are an incorporated company.[00:19:12] We are a social enterprise and we are going to be charging for a product. And that is Clinnect. And we were able to kind of take all of the learnings. Through doing this with general surgery over the past three years and finally build something.[00:19:25]Jonathan: When you say it was not scalable. I imagine that means, uh, it's very dependent on manual labor?[00:19:32] Angela: Yeah. Almost entirely dependent on manual labor. So when the workflows were, um, disjointed, so it required somebody to do one thing in this one software, take it over here and do another thing in this other software and then take it over here and do X, Y, and Z with it from there. nothing was automated, nothing was overly efficient.[00:19:55] There's room for error when you have a human doing all of this. So, it was way too expensive to have somebody doing this. So learning all of that is why we built Clinnect. Because we knew we were onto something and then just taking all those learnings and then automating them.[00:20:10] And it took a long, took really long time to figure that out and what that should look like.[00:20:15] Jonathan: I think, I mean, I think it's interesting to tie that back to the pricing a little bit like the, um, what Clinnect can do for 50 or $75 a month, how much work would that take a person to do?[00:20:27]Angela: So we priced that out because we were looking at doing exactly that and it sits around the 400 to $450 a month.[00:20:34] Jonathan: Right. So, so the, I mean, ultimately the value that's being created here is around $300 a month.[00:20:45] Angela: Which is pretty neat.[00:20:46]Jonathan: okay. Think back to my economics. What does that piece, when you draw the, when you draw the diagram and in that difference there that's the[00:20:55] Angela: I know exactly what you're talking about, but I cannot remember[00:20:59] Jonathan: We've forgotten so much of our MBA,[00:21:01]Angela: I think you learn about that in first year, business degrees.[00:21:06] Jonathan: I know my MBA was a lot of first year business stuff cause I didn't take business.[00:21:11] Angela: neither. Oh, my goodness. I love it.[00:21:15]Lessons Learned in 3 Years[00:21:15]Jonathan: So this has been a three year journey. We've we've really just started it's. Um, but it has been three years. So what, what are some of the other, um, some of the other lessons that you maybe have picked up in those three years, besides, you know, besides some of the domain specific stuff around the problem that you're solving.[00:21:37]Angela: I think what we learned big time as there's no quick fixes in healthcare. I was a little bit naive and we first did the project that I was like, Oh, we're going to do this and we'll fix this right away.[00:21:48] And there's just, yeah, there's just no quick fixes. good fixes take a long time in healthcare. They require a lot of thought and a lot of understanding because the, the problems can be so complex. Um, and it's hard to narrow in on problems because. In healthcare, there's so many other problems gleaming around that problem.[00:22:13]So that was kind of another thing that we learned is, you know, laser focus on the one thing that you want to change and go for it. And there was a few times, even you, would I be sitting in a meeting with you and I would have another idea for something else. And you would say, okay, you need to be laser-focused, Angela. I was like, right, right. I need to do that. So that was, that was.[00:22:36]Jonathan: Clinnect does feel very focused. even in some of the, planning meetings, it, we start talking about some features and some things that start to start to lose some of the focus, but yeah, it starts to broaden, broaden that scope of it. But at its core, it's a very focused product.[00:22:51] Angela: And I like that. And I think that that's a really hard thing when you're getting into healthcare solutions. It is really hard not to go for a bunch of things at the same time, but I think you're going to have a better success rate. If you really laser focus on, on kind of one solution, one problem, one solution, and then go from there and you can always build out afterwards, but, you know, try and try and focus on that first.[00:23:17]Um, there's also this thing around solving problems in healthcare that can be really distracting. And especially when you're maybe working with government bodies and things like that is solutions tend to be. Um, system centric versus versus like a patient or provider centric. And you can go down kind of rabbit holes.[00:23:41] Um, That maybe at the time seemed like you're solving a solution, but you might be talking to the wrong people about what that solution should be looking like. And I think this, once again, goes back to talking to your users and talking to the real stakeholders in this meaning, patients, providers, people that are going to actually be using this stuff.[00:24:03]For us at Clinnect we definitely had the opportunity to go down that system centric solution road. It would not have felt nearly as good as what this does, because what we're doing right now is we're really working with a solution that's going to benefit, um, the broader, good, not just the system.[00:24:25] So, so there's that.[00:24:27]Ruffling Feathers in Healthcare[00:24:27] Jonathan: does that ruffle some feathers a bit?[00:24:30] Angela: Of course it does. Yes. Yeah. Um, it can be hard because healthcare is so riddled with what we've always done it that way, which can be a real big barrier to systemic change. But then it's also layered on what I found a little bit with. Um, not just, we've always done it that way, but a pride in that way that maybe they've done it.[00:24:58] And so when you're asking people to start changing workflows and changing the way that they look at it, it's a, it feels personal when it's really, it's not it's, it is systemic change, not personal change, but, um, in something like healthcare, Right. I just feel like there's so much passion in their jobs and their work and their, and, and things like that, that people can get really defensive very quickly.[00:25:24] Um, when you're suggesting maybe bigger changes. Yeah. I think also for me, it has been surrounding myself with people that know way more than me.[00:25:38] In multiple facets. I think of, you know, even my, my, so my cofounders are general surgeons and, obviously they know way more than me when it comes to medical stuff. Then, , I partnered with, uh, with you guys at Two Story Robot and you guys know way more than me when it comes to tech stuff and yeah, just surrounding yourself with people that, that are amazing experts in their different domains really helps.[00:26:07] And it also like it doesn't put the pressure on, you know, the founder or the CEO to come up with all the solutions, but rather just, if you surround yourself with people who know better than you, then it, it helps also surrounding yourself with really good people because you will get beat up and you will fail and you will have to get yourself back up and you might sometimes need a need, a hand to get back up and[00:26:30] Jonathan: Yeah, I need a little reminder that, uh, why you're in this in the first place.[00:26:34] Angela: Yeah, yeah, for sure.[00:26:38]We Have Great Reviews![00:26:38]Thanks for listening to Fixing Faxes, building a digital health startup. I'm Angela Hapke. And my cohost is Jonathan Bowers. Music by Andrew Codeman. Follow us on Twitter at @FixingFaxes. You can find us wherever you like to listen to podcasts. And please do us a favor tell a friend. Thanks for listening.[00:26:55]Jonathan: Did you see the other review that we have?[00:26:58] Angela: My husband.[00:26:59] Jonathan: it came up.[00:27:06] Angela: He is, he's like her biggest fan .[00:27:08] Jonathan: I'm going to steal a joke from Bronwyn, uh, he's such a fan, he married one of the hosts.
29 minutes | 9 months ago
Who is Angela and Jonathan?
Show NotesThis episode finally delves into who Jonathan and Angela are, a bit of our backgrounds and how we both took very different paths to get to where we are. We give shout outs to our team, mentors, friends, and family.We talk in this episode about non-medical fabric masks and we wanted to give a shout out to Sew the Curve Kamloops. We also mention a local company Desert Lily Clothing that made the custom masks for Two Story Robot.Find Us OnlineAngela Hapke - @angelahapke - https://www.clinnect.caJonathan Bowers - @thejonotron - https://www.twostoryrobot.comCreditsProduced by Jonathan Bowers and Angela HapkeMusic by Andrew Codeman (CC BY 3.0)Transcript[00:00:00] Angela: Just buy a mic.[00:00:00] Jonathan: You're just going to buy a mic anyways.[00:00:03] Angela: Why not?[00:00:03] Jonathan: Okay. Well tell me if you do, and then I will also buy the mic and[00:00:06] Angela: Well, okay. I don't want to make you buy a mic,[00:00:09] Jonathan: Well, no, no, no. Cause I, I will, um, I kind of want to[00:00:12] Angela: Let's just buy my mics then[00:00:15]Intro[00:00:15] Jonathan: Hi, I'm Jonathan Bowers. I'm the CEO of Two Story Robot and we're helping Angela build a digital health startup. And we had a bunch of masks, custom made masks that I delivered to my team yesterday. Yeah, it was super fun.[00:00:34] Angela: do people like them.[00:00:35] Jonathan: Yes. Uh, Lindsey posted a picture of her wearing our branded mask, the branded hat, some chainmail, and a sword to vanquish COVID[00:00:50]Angela: that's awesome.[00:00:52] Jonathan: I'm excited We made a, I think there's like 35 or so. Um, so we're distributing everyone on the team gets one, it's the Olsen[00:01:01] Angela: The Olsen mask[00:01:02] Jonathan: got. Uh, I had her use some scrap fabric, whatever scraps she had for[00:01:07] Angela: well, that one has hello,[00:01:08] Jonathan: This one is Hello Kitty.[00:01:10] Angela: That's cute. That's perfect.[00:01:12] That's super fun.[00:01:13] Jonathan: Yeah, it's super fun. We're going to sell them, sell the extras, mark them up a whole bunch and give a, give the profits to charity.[00:01:21] Angela: That's great. Awesome.[00:01:23] Hi, my name is Angela Hapke and I am the CEO of Central Referral Solutions. The company that has launched Clinnect the digital health product, um, that Two Story Robot is helping us with. And speaking of masks I made masks for. Sew the Curve Kamloops, which is a grassroots organization that made over 10,000 masks for, our geographic area around Kamloops and, um, not just mass, they made scrub caps and, um, bags.[00:01:58] So like healthcare workers could put their, their scrubs in their clothes, in a bag that had like a drawstring. So they could just dump them in the washer when they got home and things like that. But it was really, really cool in the beginning of COVID to be part of something that was, um, that was really.[00:02:14] Making an impact like that. So I think I ended up making about, I want to say about 40 scrub caps and about 25 masks.[00:02:26] Jonathan: Yeah, the, uh, we hired a business out of the Sew the Curve to make our masks, somebody new who is just starting a business for the first time. Um, and she, you know, she wanted a Desert Lily Clothing.[00:02:39]She is going to make children's clothing, but then became really active on the Sew The Curve. And so we reached out to her and she was super excited about it. So yeah. Yeah, that's fine.[00:02:49] Angela: Hence the Hello Kitty uh, scrap fabric[00:02:51]yup. There we go. Somebody we can talk about today.[00:02:57]Getting to Know Each Other[00:02:57] Jonathan: Well, I wanted to, I wanted to get to know Angela. I already know Angela.[00:03:03] Angela: But do we like, so this is an interesting part is so we've known each other for a few years now. and I feel like, um, we know each other from like the last five years of our career, but I don't actually know the Jonathan pre.[00:03:20] Pre age 30 or something like that.[00:03:23] Jonathan: How old do you think I am?[00:03:24] Angela: I know exactly how old you are, because you're the same age as me.[00:03:27] Jonathan: Oh, am I?[00:03:28] Angela: Well, you're a few months older[00:03:30] Jonathan: Oh, okay. When's your birthday? What? In December. Oh, so you haven't,[00:03:35] Angela: I[00:03:36] Jonathan: you haven't[00:03:36] Angela: the big four. Oh[00:03:38] yeah, but I mean, you turned 40 during COVID.[00:03:43] Jonathan: Yeah, it was, uh, not the birthday I wanted, but it was still, it was still enjoyable. It was still fun.[00:03:49]Angela: Brad and I will be married 10 years. This December, I will turn 40 this December Yeah, we had plans to go to France. I really lovely trip. And none of that's going to happen now. So no I'm adjusting expectations as is everyone right now with life.[00:04:11] So, yeah. So, so how do we segue into the, who are we?[00:04:17] Jonathan: talk about it. Who, who, who is Angela?[00:04:20] Angela: how far do you want me to go back?[00:04:21]Jonathan: well, I was thinking about this. We met, um, when I was working at FreshGrade. Um, I was, one of the first employees and I can't remember how big the team was at that point, but you, knew one of the founders, Steve, Steve Wandler, or you knew Steve from some other thing and you were doing some kind of project through your MBA.[00:04:44] And I remember that, but I don't remember much about it. I just remember that. That's what you were there doing. And then, I dunno, you went and finished the MBA. I went and did some stuff. And then, and then you were back in Kamloops and you came, I think you came through, um, the innovation center. And I think that's how we got reintroduced.[00:05:04] Angela: I think that was I actually, I think it was Steve again. So Clinnect is, is a long journey. Forget about overnight successes. Long journey has been about three years in the making. We started off as a government project. Um, and we thought we kind of landed on something really interesting.[00:05:24] And I wondered if we couldn't make it some kind of digital health product of some kind. And so I sought out Steve, um, Just because previously I lived in Kelowna, I worked for what at the time was the Okanagan Science and Technology Council, which is now morphed and grown up into Accelerate Okanagan and I, so I knew Steve through that and we remained in contact.[00:05:51]Uh, I helped him, um, with his very first Metabridge events. Metabridge is at its root , um, uh, a series of events that would connect, um, BC and the Okanagan to the Silicon Valley. So I was helping him with that. Uh, we moved to Kamloops, um, because Brad got offered a job up here in Kamloops. It was a great one. We need, we were looking at a transition at the time. Anyway. I started working at the hospital as a project manager at Royal Inland hospital, first in the emergency department and then for the hospital itself.[00:06:25] And that's how I got introduced to a group of surgeons that wanted to do a pooled referral. Um, what we soon found to be unscalable and unsustainable way? And we thought, you know, I think there's a better way to do this.[00:06:38] Hence Clinnect was born. And at that point I reached out to Steve to say, I need a technical team um to do this and I actually I actually bounced the idea that we were bouncing around the ideas of whether I build it in house or um find someone[00:06:58] Jonathan: to do that and right away he mentioned you he said um[00:06:59] oh really? Oh, that's cool. I don't, I don't recall that, but, okay. Yeah.[00:07:03] Angela: And so, and I think that's how we met. And then it just kind of morphed organically from there is I realized like, Oh my gosh, trying as a nontechnical founder to build a technical team would be a little unruly.[00:07:19] And so then you came along and we're like, perfect. You guys can build it. And then I hired a software developer anyway, because she's brilliant.[00:07:28] And,[00:07:28] Jonathan: Oh, she's awesome. Jackie's the, Jackie's the best?[00:07:31]Angela: yeah, so she's been working with you guys straight out, straight out of university.[00:07:36]MBAs[00:07:36]Jonathan: you did the MBA at both the university of British Columbia and Thompson Rivers University[00:07:41] Angela: Correct. So I did my core MBA through UBC Sauder School of Business.[00:07:46] And so you had to, like, I was flying in every other weekend for three days. And it was just getting too much on my relationship with Brad and I just, I couldn't do your number two right away. And then they changed it so that you couldn't take off, you had to start all over again. And I was like, Oh, that's not going to happen.[00:08:06] And the price had gone up in the time that I had started to when I wanted to go back and do my second year. So we went to TRU or Thompson Rivers University, and they were like, Oh yeah, Come well, we'll give you all these credits for your core MBA classes and you can finish here.[00:08:24] Jonathan: Yeah, I did. So I did the same. I did the same MBA program at UBC a few years before you, I think, um, and we had the reason why I chose it was because they had a, they had one that had a part time program.[00:08:39] And then, and they said, Oh, and you can, you can do this from Kelowna. I was like, Oh, that's, that's an easier drive. But when you get into it, it was just, no, you've got to come down for pretty much everything. But I remember those, those, it was like every other weekend I would, you know, leave, leave work at lunchtime ish on Friday[00:08:59] Angela: and wouldn't get home until,[00:09:01] Jonathan: Yeah, like a late Sunday night and just the whole, the whole weekend in that basement. Just[00:09:08] Angela: in the basement. No, I don't think I even remember windows in that[00:09:11] Jonathan: no, but I remember I enjoyed it. I loved it. I[00:09:14] Angela: to say the programming was unreal. It was very, very good.[00:09:20] Jonathan: And my, yeah, the classmates, like I still am in touch with, uh, not as in touch as I should be or wants to be, but I'm still, still in touch with a lot of my cohort. Um, Just, yeah, I had a much better experience in my MBA program than I did in my undergraduate, um, computing science program. It was just so much better just could have done with the driving and, um, yeah, it was also a pretty heavy strain on the relationship.[00:09:46]Undergraduate Degrees[00:09:46] Angela: Um, where did you do your undergrad?[00:09:47]Jonathan: I went to SFU, Simon Fraser University in Burnaby. So I did my undergraduate in computing science.[00:09:53] Angela: Did you go straight from high school to university or did you take some time off?[00:09:57] Jonathan: No. Well, I went, I, not exactly. Like I there's a university college in Salmon Arm. So I did my first year there. Cause it was cheap and they actually had a very, very good science program and, and computing science instructors,[00:10:11] the physics, the math and the computing science instructors at Salmon Arm were just very, very good. Like I remember, I remember in one of our first year computing science programs, doing stuff that. We never even came close to doing in the four years at, at SFU.[00:10:28] Angela: Wow.[00:10:29] Jonathan: Uh, I really liked it. And then yeah, I went to SFU for the remaining six years, six years of my degree.[00:10:38] Angela: Sorry.[00:10:39] Jonathan: six Yeah. I took like seven years to do my undergraduate degree. Yeah. Yeah. I took a year off, not quite a year off. I took basically a year off. I took her a couple of semesters where I only took three or four courses.[00:10:53]Working Through University[00:10:53]Um, I also worked through through university. I had a, I had a very, it wasn't a, it wasn't a hard job, but it was, um, it was very relevant.[00:11:02]Somebody referred me to this, to this person in Hawaii who, uh, was like, who needed help doing, doing some work on websites and stuff?[00:11:11] I was like, okay, well, I'll sure and, uh, he just employed me through through university and it was. No, not a lot of work. It was maybe maybe 10 or 20 hours of work a week if that, but it was in US dollars and pretty good, pretty good wage.[00:11:27] So yeah, I was, and the stuff that I got to do was kind of, um, wouldn't say over my head, but the clients were not the clients I should have been interacting with.[00:11:38] Angela: Right. You're a little bit out of your[00:11:41] Jonathan: they were big.[00:11:43] Angela: That's awesome.[00:11:44] Jonathan: I worked on a pharmaceutical for a large pharmaceutical company helping with some of their, some of their website.[00:11:50] I worked, uh, at one point we had a client that was, um, going to be featured on Oprah. And so they said, yeah, we're going to get an onslaught of orders to our eCommerce site. So we just want to make sure that things are like tickety, boo. And so.[00:12:09] Yeah, he phones me. He's like, Hey, can you, can you spend the next couple of weeks getting ready?[00:12:13] I'm like, okay, sure. And I go in there, I'm like, Oh man, there's a whole bunch of stuff that needs fixing. And I would fix a bunch of things and report back. And then, uh, yeah, it was, it was a neat, it was a neat, like, very, very odd job for me to have as a university student. But, um,[00:12:28] Angela: That sounds like a perfect odd job to have.[00:12:31] Jonathan: it was, it was, uh, I could one work remotely, which in 2000 whatever. um, was a strange thing, right. Working, remote and working on the types of things that I was doing, which I was very excited about. Um, yeah, it was a good, it was a good job.[00:12:47] Angela: Did you, so, okay. So like 15 year old, Jonathan. Did he know what he wanted? Like, did he know that he was going to be doing what 40 year old Jonathan is doing right now?[00:13:01]Jonathan: Um, maybe not exactly, but, uh, pretty close. I think I was doing lots of programming classes and I was doing stuff like that on my own time. Um, it wasn't really though, until I got into maybe grade 12 that I was really doing, like taking it more seriously. And I had, I mean, I, I had basically started this, not this company, but this version of version of this, when I was in grade 12, I had made friends with this, um, with someone in a game who lived in New York, who happened to be a really good graphics designer. Uh, and then one of my other friends from high school and we started building, management information systems for people, for other companies.[00:13:41] They were like, it was really, really small potatoes. Like they were, we built the theaters, um, the, uh, like a system for the theater to update their what's what's playing.[00:13:50] Um, and so we built that and we like learned all sorts of technology and ideas. And then, so yeah, it was, it was great.[00:13:56] Uh,[00:13:57] Angela: is so cool.[00:13:59]Linear paths vs Z-shaped paths[00:13:59] I like your linear process.[00:14:03]Uh, well, if you want to, I have what we call it, like the, the, the Zed. Uh, path[00:14:08] Jonathan: Okay. Your, Oh your Oh, my path was linear. Oh yeah.[00:14:11] No, my path was very,[00:14:13] Angela: Yes. Yes. Sorry. I meant your path. Not your, yeah. Your path. Like, I feel like 15 year old Jonathan, you could potentially see, okay. Where[00:14:23] Jonathan: Oh, yeah. Yeah, it was, it was pretty clear from when I was fairly young and that, I mean, that comes from some pretty significant privilege, right? Like I've got a computer when I was quite young and then never, um, I didn't feel like I was missing anything.[00:14:39] I mean, I also, I also had to like save up and buy some, buy some things, but I, you know, I had some jobs, which again was some privileged cause my dad helped me get those.[00:14:49] and uh, yeah, and then I just got like a lot of experience, very, very young and very relevant experience. But yours was a Z yours wasn't straight like an arrow like mine was?[00:15:02] Angela: Oh, Oh boy, uh, grew up on a ranch in Saskatchewan. Um, and then I left for university when I was 17,[00:15:12] Jonathan: Oh,[00:15:12] Angela: because, well, because I'm a December baby. So I was actually, uh, 17, my whole first semester of university. I moved four or five hours away. Um, Lived in an apartment with two friends and had just way too much fun, um, applied to university, got in, uh, for a kinesiology degree.[00:15:31] actually, sorry, I applied and got in under a business degree. So a marketing degree is what I was going for. And then I went to one economics class and one statistics class and hated it. And so I went down to the student counselor and said, I don't think this is for me.[00:15:51] Like, I don't even like where was my resiliency? No idea. Um, went down to that basement. Said to her. I can't like I can't do this. And she goes, well, what are your interests? And it was like, I really liked sports when I was in like in high school. Like, that was my thing. I loved sports. And she goes, well, have you looked at her kinesiology program?[00:16:10] I looked at it and it involved a lot of, a lot of classes that were like, I took fencing,[00:16:18] Jonathan: Yeah. As a class.[00:16:24] Angela: Oh, Tai Chi. Ooh. I took Tai Chi, like just random. And I looked at this and 17 year old[00:16:30] Jonathan: You went through the like parks and recreation catalog and thought that,[00:16:35] Angela: Yeah. She could have handed me the parks and recreation catalog. I was like, yep.[00:16:39] That's for me. Um, yeah. Seventeen-year-old Angela was, was. Going to do that and pair it with an education degree. So now I went from marketing and I was going to, because Lethbridge was the university of Lethbridge was well known for its education degree. And you could get a dual degree in five years.[00:16:58] And I thought, well, that just makes a lot of sense. And so I was on the path to be a phys ed teacher[00:17:06] Jonathan: I don't imagine you being a phys ed[00:17:08] teacher at[00:17:08] Angela: no, I would have been an awful teacher period. so third year I've now decided I just want to go do something different for the summer. So I decided to move up to Lake Louise and worked for whitewater rafting company, which I did. four months turned it into eight months and then they decided that I had to go back and finish.[00:17:29] I had 15 classes to finish and I had a goal of finishing the by September. So January to September, I was going to finish 15 classes.[00:17:39] Jonathan: that's that's ambitious.[00:17:40] Angela: So I went and I told somebody this, and she goes, Angela, you can do this.[00:17:46] but you cannot go below B in any of your classes. Well, 21 year old Angela was up for the challenge and I did it. So I finished by September and they phoned me and they were like, Angela, we're really impressed with your work ethic and how you came back and you really upped your grades and you kept the up blah, blah, blah. We'd like to invite you to do your master's program with us. And then all of this, I'd never got into the education program because I didn't have a 4.0 GPA.[00:18:19] And like four kinesiology students get into the ed program, they forgot to mention that to me when I was like, this is what I want to do. Uh, so then, uh, I got this phone call and I said, thank you very much. Um, but I have a job in Banff and I'm just going to go be a, like a, uh, gonna go be a ski bum for the winter.[00:18:39] And she just laughed and she goes, okay, have fun? So that's what I did. And what was only supposed to be eight months in Banff, turned into four years.[00:18:47] Jonathan: Cool. You ski bummed for four years.[00:18:53] Angela: In a way. Yeah, but I actually got like a pretty grownup job at a pretty young age there. So I was, I was a project coordinator for a destination management company. So it was managing these big corporate events and vacations and things like that. That's where I learned, like everything I kind of needed to learn for project management in the future, because I worked for this amazing woman named Laurie who had this really cool company, but she was like, she was really tough on , on, um, internal workflows and what must be done so that you could hand over projects really easily.[00:19:30] So she kind of trained us all to, and that set the stage for, so for me, kind of in the future. So then we met, I met Brad, we moved to Kelowna. I started working for the Okanagan Science and Technology Council, as I mentioned. Um, got into tech, which I like, then I was like, Ooh, this is fun. Um, in all of this, I've like, I've done wedding planning.[00:19:52] I've I've, I've worked like you talk about what you worked during university. I worked at the Nikka Yuka Japanese gardens. Like as a tour guide wearing a, um, a yukata. So it's not a con kimono, but it's a yukata. And like, it was just like Zed path. And then, um, moved to Kamloops, got into health care. And then I blended those two passions of healthcare and technology.[00:20:20] And here we are,[00:20:23] Jonathan: That's so funny. It is a Zed path, but I like that, like I like.[00:20:27] Angela: the ridiculous it's Zed path.[00:20:29] Jonathan: No, I feel, I feel like my path is a little restrictive. Like it's, it's good. It's focused, but I don't have a ton of breadth of experience.[00:20:40] I mean, I have, I have different experiences, obviously. I'm not totally, uni-dimensional, but where you, you know, you've got these other things that you can draw on that are okay.[00:20:52] Roll your eyes.[00:20:53] Angela: I rolled my eyes because it's like, yeah, I guess I can, you know, you're, you're right there at different experiences. That's for sure. But, Oh man, I also feel like I delayed. My career by at least four years by sidetracking and going to, you know. Like Brad always jokes that my time in Banff was my never, like, it was never, never land.[00:21:17] So it didn't age or gain[00:21:20] Jonathan: Gain anything. You're stunted by four years,[00:21:24] Angela: I'm stunted by four years. So we would joke about when, how old I'm turning. We minus four, because[00:21:29] Jonathan: you have the emotional maturity of a 30 something year old, not a, not a nearly40 year old.What Do You Want To Do When You Grow Up?[00:21:38] Angela: Yeah. And Brad, so Brad has a similar path to you and I just find it so fascinating when I meet these people that are like, okay, they were in high school and they could see themselves doing what they do now.[00:21:50] Jonathan: Yeah, I don't, I don't see that a lot. Like I've I talked with not a lot of high school students, but a fair number of high school students and, and they, you know, some, some of them are like just clearly like, yep, I want to program.[00:22:03] I want to be, I want to do this, but most, most just have no clue.[00:22:09] And it's hard, like, and the pressure to the pressure to have made all those decisions in grade nine, you know, what do you want to do when you're in your late twenties? When you're in grade nine? I don't[00:22:20] Angela: I don't have a clue. Why should I know that?[00:22:24] Jonathan: it seems unfair[00:22:26] Angela: I think I, I even think like at 17 or 18, when you're heading into university, even then, like the 30 year old Angela was dreaming of what I'm doing now, but it wasn't ever really sure if that's even like, and that was just a decade ago.[00:22:44] Jonathan: yeah. I think, I think my, I was fortunate in that I I understood what I wanted to do, maybe. Well, not, not specifically, but I understood the direction that I wanted to go in. And always, I mean, I always felt this desire to, to start a company or to start and start a business. Um, and eventually got there.[00:23:07] I had rose colored glasses though, when I was 18 or 19 thinking, thinking it would be a lot easier and a lot, like a lot more financially successful than I would that I am.[00:23:20]It's Mostly Luck[00:23:20] Um, but I think we both, and I think we both need to check that for a minute though, because you and I graduated, maybe you less. So just, it took a little bit longer to graduate from university. But when I graduated from university, it was, um, so it was 2002 and I was in Alberta. Everything the world was my freaking oyster.[00:23:43] Angela: I could, I could have got a job in five minutes there, anything, and, and, and now, so I look at, you know, the environment and the work environment that we graduated into versus these kids that better. I shouldn't call them kids. These young, young people are graduating into right now. And I'm, I, I can't even[00:24:04] Jonathan: So, yeah, I can't, I mean, yeah, like I did, I did school right when the tech crash happened and, um, it was a great time to be in school and, uh, a very, very fortunate time to have a job that was. I'm paying for it. Like, I, I came out of, came out of university with very little debt.[00:24:26] Angela: awesome.[00:24:28] Jonathan: like, yeah. And then, and then also managed to get, uh, get a job in public sector, um, which paid quite well.[00:24:35] Uh, yeah, as my first job, I, as my first job out of university, I, within three months was a manager of an IT department. I mean, I had, like, I had nobody to actually manage. It was just a title. I didn't have any, I didn't have any experience managing anyone, but they needed to put me in excluded staff.[00:24:55] Angela: This is what us as we, because we sit on the cusp of gen X and millennial. Um, wow. What an amazing time to be born.[00:25:04] Jonathan: Yeah. Yep. Super lucky. I think I it's, I've reflected on this a little bit and I mean, there's, there's a ton of luck that is unearned completely, you know? My dad introduces me to some folks and says, Hey, you should hire my son and go and do the, you know, go and hire it. Do a good job. Like I'm not, I'm not saying like I didn't deserve to work there, but I probably didn't deserve the introduction.[00:25:32] Um, I didn't earn that, but earned my keep once I got there. And then, and, but everything, everything up until up until now feels like it's just luck. Like, I've just, I've just been lucky. Right? Like meeting, meeting Steve at FreshGrade was pure luck. It it, you know, there wasn't there wasn't, I didn't go off looking for it.[00:25:53] I just happened to be in the right place at the right time and was doing, doing the right kind of thing. And he said, Hey, we should, we should chat. Uh, okay, sure. Let's let's chat. And then, um, you know, everything's, everything's like all the clients that we have is luck. It's just people, people show up and we happened to be there and.[00:26:14] It happens. I think the skill is maybe recognize not, not squandering that luck, not, not,[00:26:20] um, not letting that opportunity pass because I do see that happen a lot where people, people, people are in the right place at the right time. And, you know, I've taught with mentored these people and. And they just don't have the, they don't, they don't, they don't see it either.[00:26:34] They don't see the opportunity or they're missing some, some skill to actually, uh, be able to take advantage of that opportunity and then they miss it. And so I think that's some, one of the skills that I've managed to figure out is that I can recognize that luck is happening. Try to increase my surface area of luck and, uh, hopefully, um, hopefully turn that into, into[00:27:00] Angela: I like that. Um, I also love where we're at right now in the fact that we're now at the experience level and the age and the, um, just time in life where we can start handing the opportunities down like to, to others that are like, you know. When I take a look at, um, hiring Jackie was pure luck, I found Jackie by pure luck, that being said.[00:27:28] when I, you know, kind of got to meet her and understand, you know, where her passion was and, and her interests and things like that, I was like, Oh my gosh. Like if you got to come work for us, like, I can't afford somebody to be hired yet, but like, I gotta, I gotta find a way to get you on board. And just being able to give that.[00:27:47] You know, to be able to give her her first job out of university, what it felt so amazing. And, and those kinds of things, where we get to give the opportunity now to those that are exiting and graduating at a time, that is just crap. And now we're in the positions where we can give those, you know, um, help them out in, in some ways just feels.[00:28:11] So amazing.[00:28:12] Our Families are Our Best Fans!Alex and I were listening to Spotify. And I don't pay for the premium. and of course the ads pop up it was an ad for a podcast that was, that was being released on Spotify.[00:28:27] Comes running into my room and she's like, Mama, somebody else is releasing a podcast too. She's like you, I thought that was pretty cute.[00:28:43] Jonathan: Oh, she's so proud of her mom. That's so cool.[00:28:48] Angela: like, Aw, warms my heart. She was so excited for me
28 minutes | 9 months ago
How do we price a digital health product?
Show NotesPricing a new product is hard to do and requires that you step outside your comfort zone. We talk about freemium and why we don't want to build a free product. How we might figure out a good price. And the 4 Ps of marketing.Warning. We say "pee" and "poop".Fact CheckWe discuss the"P's of Marketing", despite both having an MBA we cannot remember which they are. The term we are discussing is Marketing Mix, which is the 4 P's of marketing: Product, Price, Place, and Promotion. Developed by E. Jerome McCarthy in the 1960's, and has been a staple of any University Marketing class.The term "Freemium" is used a lot in this episode, a good introductory read on the topic done by the Harvard Business Review. It is a concept introduced in the 1980's but gained popularity around 2010. Clinnect briefly considered this route with the product until we realized the product was too valuable with the minimum feature set to be a free product.In this episode we delve into definitions around patient referral intakes, such as central intake vs pooled referrals vs directories, etc. The Canadian Medical Association uses a policy statement to define the use, however it does not take into account the use of algorithms, which Clinnect has now introduced this into landscape.The pricing strategy exercise that we discuss at the end is the Van Westendorp Pricing Model. The exercise includes surveying potential customers to see where the "sweet spot" for pricing is, the questions are worded well to incite the right responses, yet you have the flexibility to tailor to your product. The final results are in as of the time this episode airs, but you will have to wait a couple episodes to find out!Find Us OnlineAngela Hapke - @angelahapke - https://www.clinnect.caJonathan Bowers - @thejonotron - https://www.twostoryrobot.comCreditsProduced by Jonathan Bowers and Angela HapkeMusic by Andrew Codeman (CC BY 3.0)Transcript[00:00:00] Jonathan: So I'm wearing, um, Hokas. I don't know if you're familiar with the brand of shoe.[00:00:05] Angela: Nope, but they look very nice Jonathan.[00:00:07] Jonathan: They have, they have these really thick, thick sole, I just don't wear them running very much. So they're just kind of sitting around and I thought, Oh, these shoes are good. Like they're good shoes.[00:00:17] Angela: are good podcasting shoes.[00:00:18] Jonathan: Yeah. So they're my podcasting shoes, I put them on before we record a podcast in case I need to stand. Hi, my name is Jonathan Bowers. I am the CEO of Two Story Robot, a software development company, helping Angela and CRS built a product. And my son just pooped in a potty for the first time.[00:00:37] Angela: That's amazing.[00:00:40] Jonathan: willingly. Well, so not willingly.[00:00:43] He. Just before bath uh bath time is like my routine with him. So we go in the tub and he's bathing and he's kind of squatting in the tub playing around and he's pooped in the tub, three or four times. And I try not to make a big deal out of it, but when I do, I often like just kind of yell and it scares them a bit. So I tried not to do that when he started to grunt, as he was squatting down in the toilet, like, Oh, okay, let's get out, do a quick, dry off.[00:01:10] And then we put him, put him on the potty and he sits there and plays with his toes and plays with the handle and and out comes, a poop.[00:01:17] Angela: And Jonathan, how old is Zack?[00:01:19] Jonathan: He's 17 months old now.[00:01:22]it's pretty fun.[00:01:22] Angela: so happy for you.[00:01:27] I am.[00:01:27]Hi, I'm Angela Hapke and I am the CEO of Central Referral Solutions. The company that has launched Clinnect and I cleaned poop out of my almost three year olds pants, five times in the last few days.[00:01:46] Jonathan: Oh my goodness. Is this a regression? Is this some kind of anxiety induced thing because of some change in school or is it[00:01:55] Angela: yeah, you don't, you don't know my daughter is pure, "I don't give an F. I am way too busy. Digging for worms and playing and in the sandbox to worry about the poop I've just had in my pants. " But then she's upset with herself afterwards. So we do have progress. The shame is there. Oh yeah. So we just want her to not feel that and just go poo on the potty[00:02:31] Jonathan: So tell me, tell me, uh, how can I, how can I segue[00:02:36] Angela: are we segueing from peeing[00:02:38] Jonathan: and pooing pants?[00:02:40] Into pricing. the three P's pee, poo, and pricing.[00:02:45] Angela: I'm very sure I learned that in my MBA.[00:02:47]Jonathan: I think it's product, um, product pricing and position no, position pricing and p-p-p-p . So tell me about pricing. So you originally originally Clinnect, maybe not originally, but one of the ideas was that Clinnect was going to, there was going to be some free aspect of, of Clinnect[00:03:09]Pricing[00:03:09] Angela: Definitely! We were about, um, just over a year ago. We were discussing this. And at that time, the whole freemium idea was, um, I don't want to say it was hot because it was a little bit old by then, but it was definitely something that was well understood and well used in the, in the, in the tech industry was the whole freemium idea.[00:03:35] So we wanted to take that idea and shifted over to, um, healthcare software, which isn't really done except in more like the, the consumer, um, models.[00:03:46]Then I had a few conversations with a few people about this. And while, you know, we had floated it by the, the users, the future potential users and they were all for it. but I had like a conversation with a, a bit of a mentor of mine and he had very strong opinions about freemium products and, um, he kind of just said to me, Angela, Why would you ever give anything away for free?[00:04:13] Like, could you at least just charge 30 bucks a month for it? Why would you ever just give it away for free? I just think that model's so ridiculous. I kind of hit me a little hard because I was like, wow. Geez, everybody's doing it. That's what I thought we would do too. But it got me thinking in and about the users that I, that I have. And, um, it did make a lot of sense. I was like, yeah, honestly, to my customers, what is 20 bucks a month to them? You know, it's a few Starbucks coffees.[00:04:46] Jonathan: Well, and I think, I think also if they're not, if they don't see the value in it enough to give up the 20 bucks. Or 30 bucks or whatever it is, then either the value isn't enough or, you know, maybe it's, you know, maybe the customers are just not great customers[00:05:03] for us. and[00:05:04] we don't, you know, we don't want those.[00:05:06] We don't want the people that don't recognize that it's valuable.[00:05:09] Angela: exactly. Exactly. And, and it was. I don't want to say it was a bit insulting to our customer to give it away for free, and then just give them like the bare, bare, bare minimum. Um, but I felt like it kind of was because we do have a bit of a sophisticated customer. So, uh, so that's when I decided that I would launch with a free trial period.[00:05:37] And especially for our first users, because they're just there, they're our beta customers that were there working with us and figuring a lot of this out.[00:05:45] Jonathan: The value in that first, those first few customers is heavily slanted towards us and less so towards them[00:05:52] because we're[00:05:52] Angela: why, that's why the original groups are getting along free trial period with us. And then, um, that'll shorten as we get, uh, kind of just different tweaks and things smoothed out. so I figured when we launched, we would go with a, like a, a low cost model basic model first and then have premium, uh, features that we would add on for an additional premium price.[00:06:18] And so that's actually how I went out and sold it to groups is I said, I said to them, we're going to give you, , like six months a free. Free for you guys to use for six months. , and then, you know, right away through like, well, how much is it going to cost us when the free trial is over?[00:06:36] And I haven't never given, a stuck price on it. I haven't given a firm price on it at all. I've said it'll be anywhere between kind of that 10 to $25 a month, which nobody has batted an eye at. 10 to $25 a month for the basic product.[00:06:54][00:06:54] Jonathan: The market size for this at the moment doesn't appear to be super huge. So, you know, to have, uh, Even a hundred dollars a month as the base plan. That's not that doesn't, that doesn't make a very sustainable business.[00:07:08] Angela: No, I mean, it's one, it's one product and it's um, yeah, it's not going to make us millions and millions of dollars, I think that's when it gets interesting as to, yeah, it might, it might, it might anchor us to low. I'm willing to take that risk at this point right now, given, the forward momentum by a lot of companies to do the type of thing that we're doing.[00:07:37]Central Intake[00:07:37] Everybody's running towards central intakes, but not really knowing how to do them or how to create a sustainable model around them. What we're doing is central intake in a really easy to use fashion. Um, While others are trying to figure out how to be, how to do it, how to do a central intake and how to be sustainable.[00:08:01] Jonathan: Who were you talking about as the others? Like, do you mean like competitors or,[00:08:05] Angela: some competitors. So like some EMRs are looking at to creating what they call a central intake. But when you do a deep dive into what they're calling a central intake, it's not really a central intake and it certainly isn't a pooled referral.[00:08:21] Jonathan: Right. Yeah. what would be the differentiator between Clinnect and some of these other attempts at central intake? So you mentioned, you mentioned like, um, pooled referral. Yes. But like in what other ways are they not really central intake?[00:08:37] Angela: Okay, so let's back up and we'll talk about define these. So central, what is the central intake? It's one place for patient referrals to a particular specialty to go.[00:08:50]If you need to send your patient for a knee like a knee consult, you would send it to a central intake would be considered one fax number that all the ortho surgeons use to get all their, um, referrals in one spot. That's a central intake.[00:09:11] So that's handy-ish for a lot of groups. Who are just trying to track some wait time data, understand what the referral demand is, blah, blah, blah.[00:09:22] A pooled referral is typically paired with a central intake. So it's kind of like central intake's, like baseline and pooled referral's like the next step that you take. And that's where I, as a primary care provider want to send him my patient referral for a knee. I can send it in on typically a standardized form.[00:09:44] That has like a choose for me button or box that I check off where I don't have to choose the surgeon. I don't have to know all the surgeons in the region. And it goes into a pooled referral of which somebody assigns, um, a surgeon to that referral. So Clinnects differentiator, is it as both a central intake, a pooled referral.[00:10:11] But we do not rely on someone and their potential biases and things like that to assign it, or even just like kind of a picking like next, next, next. But we have a specific algorithm that runs in the background that can be, um, controlled by like tweaks of the dial to ensure that that referral goes to the right surgeon.[00:10:42] And has a way to balance or purposefully imbalance those referrals to each surgeon. The the other, the other one is the confirmation that the primary care provider receives. Some competitors or are starting to do that a little bit, that kind of that back and forth.[00:11:00] Um, but with ours, it's central intake, pooled referrals, and confirmations back. And then plus hopefully a whole set of other features in the future.[00:11:12]Jonathan: So the, on the topic of pricing though,[00:11:14] Angela: The basic plan includes the ability to send a referral to a specialist in a pooled way. So you have a choose for me option. So you don't have to know who's who So we're doing a Clinnect is sending referrals in, um, a far more secure way than we've seen in the past.[00:11:36] Um, certainly over fax machines, but even more so over some, um, the way that, uh, some competitors are using it. so it's a secure way to send a referral. You don't have to choose a specific surgeon and you receive a confirmation back with the surgeon's name or a specialist's name.[00:11:55]and then on the specialists end they have the ability actually, sorry, on both ends, you have the ability to historically track those referrals as to when it was sent, who it was sent to. And all that data is incredibly important when you're looking at wait times and things like that, because it captures that go date and that go time.[00:12:16] And then on the surgeon is, um, specialist's end you have a dashboard that shows you all your referrals that you have received. They're categorized their urgency coded. Um, and in our basic product, we are allowing the ability to re categorize and re urgency code or switch urgency codes on those referrals to ensure once again, because we have an algorithm running in the background that everything is copacetic on the, on, on the backend too.[00:12:52]Meaning if a a primary care provider sent through a whole bunch of hernias and only like two of them were hernias, they're going to initially get allocated as hernias in a balanced way. Um, but they weren't hernias. So when we recategorized, then it can, can change that.[00:13:10] Jonathan: And that I know, I know we try not to use the word triage, but is, is that what you would have considered triage, where they're coming in and, and you're sort of re categorizing things that were mistakenly categorized and, and adjusting the urgency.[00:13:27]It's not Triage[00:13:27] Angela: So , we are careful with using the word triage because triage assumes that there's been medical eyes on it. So meaning that the, the surgeon has taken a look at it, or the specialist has taken a look at it and actually done their categorization and their urgency. So we don't know for sure that that's being done so we don't call it triaging. We call it categorization.[00:13:46] Um, so the baseline product includes your, um, your login to our secure system that has dashboards with historical referral tracking an algorithm that runs in the background and ability to choose a surgeon or have the, the, um, system choose for you. And on the specialist end the ability to accept or reject that referral. So, that's huge because in the past, Uh, in kind of like old workflows is that acceptance or rejection of referrals was a long antiquated process of either getting something, on your computer or your fax machine.[00:14:29] And you're looking at it and you're like, Oh, this doesn't apply to us. We need to send it back and having a phone call and that re faxing and yada, yada, yada. So[00:14:39]Jonathan: So what's the plan for some of the things that we know will be in the premium? Cause I think, I think a lot of the premium features are yet to be discovered because people aren't using a system like this yet, which is exciting.[00:14:50] Right. We get to, we get to be at the front of this and see, you know, you know, moving to a more digital process. Um, A more secure process and a lot of, you know, a lot more efficient process. We get to understand what some of the, some of the new pains that, uh, MOAs and specialists will start to encounter and primary care providers.[00:15:10] But what are some of the things that we know are going to be part of that more premium[00:15:17] Premium Feature SetAngela: I think number one is, is, um, a communication method or a messaging system back and forth because of the, the reason that I just exp or the example that I just gave to you about, maybe you receive a referral. And it's inappropriate or it's missing pieces, or it's not a complete referral and you're, you're trying to put it together and you just need to do a quick message back to the primary care provider.[00:15:43] So instead of picking up the phone wasting, you know, maybe a few more minutes of your time interrupting the very busy person on the other end of the line, you can just send a quick message within the system back and forth. And, uh, potentially allowing attachments with that messaging system. We haven't talked about that as to whether that'll be included in this, in the next premium release or not, but doing something along that line.[00:16:12] Um, and then, so that's a big one. That's huge. That would be, um, I think something that people would find incredibly valuable[00:16:22]Jonathan: and at one point we were talking about the, pooled referral and being able to be deliberate in balancing or imbalancing, those referrals is that and giving the specialists the ability to tweak the dial, so to speak.[00:16:36]Angela: And that's the one that I'm waiting to hear feedback from the specialists on after using our product for a little bit is what does that exactly look like? So I can think of lots of examples where you'd want to tweak the dials. Um, I'm going to go off on mat leave. I am, slowing down my practice. I'm on the verge of retirement. we have, we have a specialist right now that goes away for a few months, um, per year on, he does like doctors without borders for.[00:17:07] I think it's three months, every year. And so he wants to turn off all urgents and then turn them back on. Um, there's just a whole bunch of examples. And then, and then once we get into being able to tweak the dials, then we get into some interesting conversations around wait times and how groups can work together.[00:17:30] To start balancing their wait times based on the categories that they've already defined. And those referrals are already coming in at. So they have that tracked data and they know their demand for each category of referrals and starting to get some balance around wait times they can't do that right now because number one, it's, um, referrals don't come in categorized. When a referral comes into a specialist office, it's not given a category,[00:18:00]Jonathan: the category comes in with the referral. That's something that the primary care provider needs to specify[00:18:06] Angela: correct. There would be, um, a reason for referral.[00:18:13]So a lot of EMRs, would kind of autofill a, um, an initial diagnosis for them. But EMRs, are different. Doctors are different and sometimes you wouldn't put the same wording in as your counterpart.[00:18:31]And so it's kind of all over the map. It helps the specialists because they, they understand it, they see it and they go, Oh, okay. Then, you know, that looks like it's urgent, we should get them in right away. Or, ah, you know, I think that's a bit of something that could wait a few weeks and, and whatnot, but there was no standardized categories for referrals.[00:18:52] This is, what's what we're starting.[00:18:55] Jonathan: So we've got a standardized list that the primary care provider picks from, but it's still, it's still on them to make that initial categorization, which they could get wrong.[00:19:04] Angela: Oh yeah. That's why this is why it's important for us to have the feature in for the specialist to re category something, categorize something. So something comes in. this, um, kind of all encompassing category that because they're not really a hundred percent sure. So they're going to put it as, you know, abdominal pain. Um, whereas, you know, specialist's going to look at it and be able to even quickly look at what's happening in the history and go, Oh, that's, we're specifically this, um, which is important because then that helps define their journey and.[00:19:42] You know, helps us get better with, predictions and wait times down the road. it's actually something that I kind of, I guess, now that you've, you've brought it to light, I kind of took it for granted that we were doing this referral categorization.[00:19:57] Jonathan: I just assumed that was happening. Like the way, the way we built it, I assumed that was just mimicking an existing practice,[00:20:04] Angela: No. The first beta users that we have coming on from specialty groups are building their own.[00:20:11]There are Two Customer Groups[00:20:11]Jonathan: Um, I want to, so one of the things that we've talked about, which I think might be important to highlight is, is we have two customer groups on, in this product. And so there's the, there's the specialists where that premium feature set makes sense for right. We're charging the specialists to have access to these features.[00:20:33] there's another user. There's the primary care providers who are primarily sending, sending referrals to the specialists. How does it work for them?[00:20:42]do they pay for it?[00:20:43] Angela: Yup. Um, and this is why I've been wavering on what the price is and that's kind of why I've given it a range. Is it, may, it may happen. Likely happened that the primary care providers are a different cost than the specialist. So if you look at it from a primary care provider perspective, they get great value right off the get go.[00:21:09] They don't have to know all the surgeons in town and who's who they just have that choose for me option. They know that their, their patient referrals getting through it's confirmed. Yay. It's kind of done after that. From a referral perspective, which is the piece that we're focused on. Specialists get a little bit longer term value from that, the ability to look back at the historical, um, the algorithm that we talked extensively about, the category, the urgency, the, just the ability to almost wait list manager referral , is a longer term value. So there might be a higher cost for the, uh, specialists versus the primary care providers. We'll see. I haven't figured that out yet.[00:22:00]Jonathan: Yeah, it will be. I'm excited to, I'm excited to gather some feedback from both sides of that from both sides of that exchange. And just see, you know, see how valuable it is to have that list just there. So you don't have to think about it or look it up. Yeah. I'm hoping that there's some value in it being easier as well.[00:22:25] And it's not, I mean, I think sending a fax is probably pretty easy[00:22:29]and the confirmation, the confirmation is, that feels like an obvious value,[00:22:33] Angela: Exactly. The way that fax machines work typically with EMR right now is a lot of it is e-faxing. So there isn't a ton of, you know, the physical paper paper shuffling around and it is, they have you EMRs have made it very easy to fax it. Let's really just kind of hit the fax button.[00:22:54]I think, and that's why from a primary care provider perspective, it is very patient centric because yes, it's maybe easy to send to the general surgeon that you send to every single time, every single patient and hope that they do all the things that you're sending them, because you don't, you have built a relationship with them and you don't really know who else is in town.[00:23:18]But that could mean a very long wait list. Whereas this takes away all that guessing[00:23:26] and all that, um, kind of pigeonholing and, and things that have happened in the past around that. So it is very patient centric from the primary care provider perspective. Uh, the confirmation back is huge because then that's like time not wasted. In the future so that there is, there is the value proposition there for them.[00:23:50] Jonathan: We talked a lot about pricing.[00:23:51] Angela: we talked a lot about pricing.[00:23:53]Jonathan: I'm excited that you have decided to not do a freemium model.[00:23:58] Uh, I just, I think it's, I think your mentor friend is correct.[00:24:04] Is it Steve? Okay. I think this is more valuable than to just give it away. We can give other stuff away. We can give away the podcast we can give away, you know, things that, that are valuable, but the day to day value that you would get out of using the software is significant.[00:24:25] And so that. You know why we need to be able to keep the lights on . We need to be able to be motivated, to continue to provide that value and to innovate on innovate even more on the value that's being provided.[00:24:41] If it's free, then what's the reason like. What's the reason to keep it's just a cost. Like it's not, it's not, it's maybe free to them, but it's not free to us.[00:24:48] Angela: Exactly. What's the motivation for us to make it better.[00:24:51] Jonathan: Yeah. It's just costing time and money or time and resources to continue. Mmm. To continue supporting free users. So I'm, I'm excited by that. I think, I think that's a much more sustainable way of building a business. I mean, there's, I think, I think one of the, one of the interesting things to come out of COVID is a bit of a rejection of that old way of doing things, which is growth at all costs[00:25:19] Angela: Oh, are we seeing that? Isn't that interesting? The shift in forget about unicorns[00:25:27] Jonathan: yeah,[00:25:28] Angela: enough. Yeah.[00:25:31][00:25:31] And so then when we did finally launch and I was doing, you know, demos, one of the first thing people ask is how much is it going to be? And to be honest, we haven't priced it yet. So come up with a guesstimate at the moment. Not that I hadn't thought about it before, because they certainly had, but I hadn't come up with anything firm.[00:25:56] Pricing ExerciseJonathan: So there's this, there's this pricing exercise that I really like[00:26:00] Angela: I don't think I like anything with a word exercise in it, but[00:26:03] Jonathan: it's not an exercise, it's just like a method.[00:26:06] Angela: You're just rebranding it.[00:26:09]Jonathan: I don't know how to pronounce this person's name, Van Westendorp's price sensitivity meter.[00:26:15] And it's it's, um, four questions that you can ask that kind of help you gauge what the price might be. So you ask at what price would you consider the product to be so expensive that you would not consider buying it? So that's the, that's the high side. That's too expensive. At what price would you consider the product to be so low that you would feel the quality could not be very good. So that's the too cheap price. and then at what price would you consider the product starting to get expensive so that it's not out of the question, but you'd have to give it some thought before buying it.[00:26:54] And that's the, uh, on the expensive for the high side. And then at what price would you consider to be the product, to be a bargain, a great buy for the money? And that's the, the sort of cheaper or the good, the good value, the good value side. And I think if you ask those questions and we've done it, we've done it on a couple of, uh, on a couple of projects and have been surprised by the results in a good way.[00:27:17] Like surprised that the, the pricing that we had maybe come up with in our minds was a little low.[00:27:25]Angela: should I try it? Should I like try a few customers and then report back?[00:27:30] Jonathan: I would love to hear that[00:27:31] Angela: okay. I'll report back.[00:27:34]3 Ps Jonathan: wait, just wait. I'm going to look up the three Ps. Is it three Ps,[00:27:38]Angela: I'm going to go product placement and price.[00:27:40] Jonathan: you think product placement and price?[00:27:41] I think. I don't know. Uh, it is, uh, product place, price and promotion. There's four Ps. So the four Ps pee and poo was not one of the four Ps of marketing, so, Oh, MBA.[00:28:00] Sorry.
24 minutes | 10 months ago
Launching with Silly Bugs
Show NotesIn the intro Jonathan discusses the fall detection used in his Apple watch, if you are interested in learning more about this feature or how to turn it on then check out this link:https://support.apple.com/en-ca/guide/watch/apd34c409704/watchosSince recording this episode Angela has actually achieved the 10,000 step mark many times according to her Suunto 3 watch. She is still trying to get evening walks in.Fact CheckSurprisingly Angela does not spew random statistics this episode, so there was not much to fact check.Find Us OnlineAngela Hapke - @angelahapke - https://www.clinnect.caJonathan Bowers - @thejonotron - https://www.twostoryrobot.comCreditsProduced by Jonathan Bowers and Angela HapkeMusic by Andrew Codeman (CC BY 3.0)Transcript[00:00:00] Angela: This is fun.[00:00:03] Jonathan: That's how you that's. I think that's, um, like journalist broadcaster thing. Like you just put your face right in the mic and just click your tongue.[00:00:14] Angela: You have no idea.[00:00:16]Jonathan: I honestly have no idea.[00:00:17] Angela: Yeah, I know. You can tell[00:00:20]Introduction[00:00:20]Jonathan: Hi, I'm Jonathan Bowers. I am a software developer and uh, Oh, I, uh, I fell down the stairs.[00:00:28]I had Zach in my hand and it scared me[00:00:30] Angela: He's okay?[00:00:31] Jonathan: He's okay. Everyone's okay. I have a little bit of rug burn on my, uh, on my elbow, but I'm fine. Just a little bit of a bruised ego. And I don't understand how I've slipped down the stairs. Like I'm pretty cautious, not cautious, but like I don't, I don't fall down the stairs ever.[00:00:46] Like the first time I've done that.[00:00:48] Angela: That's why it's called an accident.[00:00:50] Jonathan: Yeah, I guess. So anyways, I was impressed with the Apple Watch's ability to detect the fall and it suggested that I call 911[00:00:57] Angela: I love that. why don't we have Apple watches on all our old people?[00:01:01] Jonathan: I don't know.[00:01:02] Super cool.[00:01:03] Angela: That is cool.[00:01:05]So my name is Angela Hapke, and I am the CEO of Central Referral Solutions and speaking about smartwatches, I got Suunto Watch for Mother's Day and I am yet to hit 10,000 steps a day[00:01:24]You have to go for walks in the evening. You have to deliberately go and get steps.[00:01:29] Jonathan, I do. I go for freaking walks in the evening. It just, it adds about like three or 4,000 steps, but I'm just still not getting enough.[00:01:44]Jonathan: I had one day when I was legitimately less than 500 steps for the entire day. I think I was sick.[00:01:53] Angela: I was going to say, were you in bed all day?[00:01:55] Jonathan: I was in bed all day.[00:01:56] Angela: Yeah. That's why he was sick.[00:01:59] Jonathan: I thought, for sure, just casual, like just ambient walking. I would have picked up some extras more than 500 steps, but Nope.[00:02:08] Angela: that's. That's amazing.[00:02:11] Jonathan: Ambient walking.[00:02:12] Angela: Ambient walking.[00:02:14]Clinnect is launched[00:02:14] Jonathan: Okay so we've launched Clinnect uh how do you spell how do you spell that how do you spell Clinnect ?[00:02:21] Angela: C L I nope[00:02:25] Jonathan: That's right.[00:02:26] Angela: it is sorry. I'm like my brain somewhere else. And I thought, uh,[00:02:31] C L I N N E C T[00:02:35] Jonathan: Clinnect it's like clinic and connect smushed together.[00:02:39] Angela: You got it.[00:02:40]We launched it last week.[00:02:43] Jonathan: Not a full launch, a soft launch.[00:02:46] Angela: Sure a product like ours, I'm not sure launches largely easily. It's it is more of a, it is more of an iterative launch. So we just, we brought on her first umm users on Friday so many, many years ago, I I've, I've dreamed about this.[00:03:09] Like I have dreamed about this for many years. I've dreamt about being the CEO of a startup, launching a product. And when I dreamed about this, the images that were in my mind were. We, you know, we would, I would be in an office with a team and there would be high fives that day champagne, and we would be celebrating.[00:03:40] And I launched on Friday sitting alone in my basement.[00:03:49] And there was nobody, but we need high five because way too early in the day to drink shopping by myself. So,[00:04:00] Jonathan: That sounds like that makes me sad.[00:04:04] Angela: but it's actually, so. It didn't make me sad because at the end of the day is still like, the dream is still there. Like the idea, we still did something incredible and amazing, but I think it's also indicative of many things I've been reflecting on recently. Around this, this dream and what I thought that it looked like 10 years ago and what it actually looks like in reality now is I always thought I would have time to lean into these amazing pieces of the business, uh, and take my time and be thoughtful and meaningful around all these decisions and put effort and just all this additional time.[00:04:54] Leading up to the launch. I had my kids home 24 seven. There was no additional extra time or energy because I was exhausted to lean into these things. Like I was sure I was going to have this beautiful marketing website up to showcase the product and launch it. And I thought, Oh, I'm going to be so meaningful.[00:05:20] And the people that I reach out to and talk about this with, and it just, there was, there's just no time. And, and COVID like, talk about a time to launch a product. This is crazy. And so all those things. And so as soon as I let go of that ridiculous dream that I had 10 years ago and went well, that was nice.[00:05:42] That was cute. That you had that dream and that was a fun thing to focus on and it allowed you to get here. Reality looks very different and that's okay because at the end of the day, we're still doing what we said that we would do. And it's still important.[00:05:57]What does Clinnect Actually Do?[00:05:57]Jonathan: What's the thing that we're doing. What does Clinnect do? It's in healthcare, but what is ultimately boil it down to a couple of sentences or a short paragraph? What is Clinnect?[00:06:12]Angela: Clinnect was built out of a need for patient referrals from your family doctor through to a specialist to be tracked and confirmed in a way that they hadn't been before.[00:06:31] Because far too often, we rely on fax machines to do those referrals, sending and receiving. And we figured that we could create, uh, an easy, simple solution that was far more secure that allowed, um, that patient referral to be sent to the most appropriate provider. Oh, while in the background building meaningful data for your community and in demand around a specific specialties and things like that. But at it's very bare bones. It is a very simple, easy way to send a referral from a primary care provider through to a specialist for patients needing to see any type of specialist that is not sent through a fax machine.[00:07:31] Jonathan: And so how so? How has the lunch gone? So it's, it's a soft, I wouldn't even say it's a soft launch. It's a private launch.[00:07:39] Angela: Yeah, actually, that's a good way of putting it because we only allowed the users on that we wanted to start with.[00:07:46] Jonathan: But we did launch like we did, we do have, we do have users in they're using, are they using the software or have they just created accounts?[00:07:56] Angela: They've just created accounts and are taking a poke around right now. Today, I'm connecting with, uh, the first person that will be creating referrals to be sent through and received. So that's exciting.[00:08:11] Jonathan: That is exciting. And how has it gone? so? It wasn't as, uh, as exciting or as, high fives and Champaign, as you might've thought we didn't have a, we didn't have a chocolate fountain.[00:08:22] Angela: I can do those are so weird and gross.[00:08:26] Jonathan: Especially now, could you imagine having a chocolate fountain.[00:08:29] Angela: Everybody there would be caution tape around it now.[00:08:33] Because it was a private launch, it went, it went pretty good. We were able to handle the users. There was a couple of bugs that came up, but we were able to, and your team was able to address them pretty quickly. We did have a couple, uh, things happen that we thought. Well, that probably won't happen. And we kind of pushed in design and development till later that we've now had to say, Oh, wait a minute.[00:09:00] We got to put a priority around that, which has been, which was just kind of humbling in the hilarious,[00:09:07] Jonathan: It's always, it always goes that way. We plan for the things we think, okay, these are the errors that users are going to encounter. Like, these are the kinds of things that users are gonna stumble on. So we need to fix those things and then they never do. But then the things that we think, Oh, no, one's going to do this, and if they do, there's only 10 users so far, so it's not going to be that bad. But then the first user, the first time hits the one thing or the two things that we deliberately pushed to the bottom of the pile.[00:09:33]Launching with a Few Small Bugs[00:09:33] Angela: That's exactly what happened. It was our first user and she, she, she, uh, yeah, she did something that we were like, it probably won't happen. Oops. It did.[00:09:45] We can, I mean, we can talk about what that was like. We.[00:09:48] can we,[00:09:49] okay.[00:09:49] Jonathan: sure. I mean, there's nothing as long as we're not disclosing who it is. I think that's[00:09:53] Angela: so our first user, we thought, well, they won't go into the same web page and register themselves more than once. So, and correct, correct my language around this, Jonathan, but, uh, what we, what we did, what we didn't do was like a system check to see if that user already exists in the system, because we just thought they would go in once register once and then, and then just log in after that was the very first use that we got on registered herself four[00:10:24] Jonathan: Oh, I know. And it's an easy, it's such an easy thing. It's such an easy thing to fix. I don't even sure why we didn't fix it to be honest.[00:10:33] Angela: Well, isn't that the hilarious part is, yeah. Like as soon as I talked to your team about it, they were like, Oh, okay. So let's just fix that. And then it was fixed right away. But our poor first user was like, I don't see everything that I'm supposed to be seeing. And I'm like, huh, well, let's take a look into that.[00:10:51] And then we discovered it was like, well, she's actually registered four times.[00:10:54] Yeah, so that was kind of a funny one. And then we, and then, yeah, we had some funny things around, um, case sensitivity for emails and which is one of those things that we probably should have.[00:11:07] Jonathan: Yup. Yup. Often all things that should have been done, because they're really easy to do.[00:11:14] Angela: Yeah. Yeah. So.[00:11:16] Jonathan: But, it's, it's a little bit of, uh, of competing priorities. Like there's, there's so much other things to do that are just so important, right? Like we need to have encryption working. We need to have all of these features that the people need to be able to use.[00:11:32] Um, and so. These things are up there. Easy. We can just do that last minute, but then we never get to them and they creep their way in. And then we think, okay, well we didn't fix those things. It's live. No one's going to hit those. We'll fix them in a bit. Um, but[00:11:47] Angela: they did my first users, the, Oh well, and I think, and I am not sure how to, how to say this, but Clinnect is an easy platform to use. What we've created is a digital health application that is so easily, integrated into their, their systems.[00:12:11] Like you literally take two minutes to sign up, whereas like most doctor's offices in MOAs are used to software that takes like massive, like many days to onboard. Like, so for example, like your, your EMR or your emergency, your electronic medical records, there's a team that comes out.[00:12:34] Jonathan: Oh, wow.[00:12:35] Angela: I mean, okay. Maybe, maybe just one person, but there's a person that comes out that is like an implementation specialist usually.[00:12:43] And they will onboard your office, like in person. And they'll be there testing things for usually like a day or two.[00:12:52] Jonathan: Oh, wow.[00:12:53] Angela: Yeah. And I mean, EMR is, are big and heavy and, um, but any kind of software that I think about that, you know, a doctor's office uses is typically pretty robust with a complicated ish sign-on process or registration process.[00:13:16] So it's a lot more handholding Clinnect is like, I sent you a link you signed on in two minutes and then you can send a referral. Like it's that simple. And because it's that simple, I think we were just like, well, it's that simple? what I love about clinic is, um, I'm able to say because literally just two minutes to sign on and you can send a referral it's that easy. And that is a very cool value that we offer.[00:13:50] Jonathan: It's the, the, the value is that it takes two minutes to sign off.[00:13:56]Angela: No, it's, it's a, what is it? A lack of barrier, I guess.[00:14:03] Jonathan: so, okay. So we've launched, we've launched, we've had a few users sign up, um, some, some, uh, a few, a few bumps, a few stumbling blocks. and then soon I think today, some of the users are going to start. You're going to walk a user through sending, sending the first referral[00:14:22] Angela: Yeah. I'm hoping it's today, if not tomorrow. Yeah. Yeah. It's exciting. I think,[00:14:30]Jonathan: Why is it exciting? I mean, I get, I get why it's exciting for you,[00:14:33] Angela: yeah,[00:14:34] Jonathan: it's, it's, it's the dream realized, right? There's no champagne, there's no fountain of chocolate, but there's still, there's still software that's out there that a real human customer is using. There is, is going to use today. Um, why is that exciting beyond, beyond just the fact that that, you know, exists.[00:14:57] Angela: So if I take off my founder hat and I put on my like Joe public hat, is that what you[00:15:01]Digital Health is Pretty Boring[00:15:01] Jonathan: I guess, so, I mean, why, like, I mean, there's, there's all sorts of reasons why you got into this and wanted to build this. Um, and it's. It's not finished, but, but something is built and that's exciting for sure. That's, that's always exciting when it's full of anxiety of, you know, things going wrong and things have gone wrong, uh, small bumps, but, but it works, um, it's out there.[00:15:25] So, but what's the, like, what's the, what's the exciting bit now? What are you excited about now? And maybe this is from the point of view of the public.[00:15:34][00:15:34] Angela: It's so hard to answer. I think because healthcare isn't, especially digital health stuff really isn't that exciting.[00:15:46] Um, typically healthcare, digital health applications, aren't super exciting. They're not really sexy stuff that comes out and it's not, like rock your world stuff. It's usually fixing something, a systemic issue that we've had for a long time in a really obvious way. And I think that's what this is. The fact that, you know, as a, as a patient, I would go into my doctor and have a, have a referral faxed over to my specialist's office and never hear back as to where I was on a wait list if they ever received it.[00:16:26] Or if, if, if, if all of these variables Mmm we're fixing all of those, it seems obvious. And I've had this interaction with people. When I tell them about connecting what we're doing, the reaction I get almost all the time is, well, why doesn't this exist yet? So maybe it's not that exciting for the general public.[00:16:54] And rather it is more well about time[00:16:59] Cause I'm not sure that I could. I am not sure. I could go out and explain to people what Clinnect is and they'd be like, yes, that is so exciting. It is not exciting for people. It is more of a statement of, well, that just makes a lot of sense. Why the hell haven't we been doing this for a really long time?[00:17:19]Jonathan: It's a strange, um, that's a strange feeling. I experienced that every now and again, where I think back, like, how do I, how do I excite, um, 16 year old me about the kinds of things that I do now. And I don't, I'm not sure that I could, like, I'm not sure that I could say, Oh, you're going to be spending hours.[00:17:37] Um, leading a team that is building software to replace fax machines and it's going to be so awesome. 16 year old me is that sounds so[00:17:49] Angela: So boring.[00:17:50] Jonathan: boring, but it's, it is exciting because, every day, people are doing, you know, doing their job, trying to go about their day, get, get the things that they need to get done, done, and are stuck using whatever antiquated system or antiquated piece of software that they've inherited through, you know, whatever chain of decision making that led to that. And they're stuck with it and they're just trying to do the best they can. And I'm excited that, even if there's a little bit of joy, even if it's just once, even if it's just, Oh, this is, nice. And then that's it. But now, now they just go about their job.[00:18:29] Um, much, much more efficiently being able to focus on the things that matter. Um, you know, not spending their time sorting piles of paper.[00:18:39] Angela: The way that I describe it sometimes too, which some helps people a little bit. And let's be very clear that some of these features do not exist yet in Clinnect, but they are in the pipeline. Um, imagine going to your family physician with an issue he or she says, I think you need to see a specialist. And upon walking out of that office, you receive a text or an email that says.[00:19:07] Your referral to specialist so, and so has been received. The estimated waiting time is four weeks. We will be in touch with you. Um, and just, just that, just that simple, at least I know I am being taken care of because right now, when we walk out of our physician's offices with our kids that have just been referred to a specialist, We have no idea if that referral was ever received or not.[00:19:41] And I know a lot of people are terrified to pick up the phone to find out for fear of bothering someone or maybe being put at the bottom of an arbitrary list for bothering someone. Um, but this is like real time trackable referrals. Which yes, we maybe should have been doing for a long time, but haven't, so now, now it's time to, uh, but that's usually when people go, Oh, that would be really cool.[00:20:10] So maybe, so maybe if we could just insight that little bit of joy once in a while, where you literally get the text that says, Hey, and maybe even further to that, it's now been accepted by specialists. So, and so here it, you know, or even better click here to book an appointment, Things like that. Like, this is not, this is not undoable.[00:20:35] This is totally doable. I guess what I'm saying.[00:20:38] Jonathan: and it's not, um, it's not rocket surgery.[00:20:42]Angela: It's not, it really isn't, but we've been very complacent with, um, the lack of technology and in the healthcare space for a very long time. And that's what that's. I mean, I go back to why I'm excited about this is at the end of the day, we are, we are providing a service that didn't, it didn't exist in this way before I finally get to make an impact for far too long when I was in the system, um, I would be.[00:21:21] You know, writing, writing decision briefs, um, that were really exciting ideas and projects, and that would just get shelved for years. And there was no sense of change. There was no sense of making that impact. I finally decided that I couldn't sit around and do that anymore.[00:21:45] And when a group of surgeons came to me and said, we have this really cool idea, I saw a much bigger application for it. Whereas they were just like, this is how it all started. General surgeons and Kamloops just, just wanted one place where all their referrals could come into and they could pull it. This is how this all started.[00:22:06] That's all they wanted. Could you help us do that? Yeah, I can definitely help you do that. And my guess is you're not the only ones that need that.[00:22:13]What is Coming Next with Clinnect?[00:22:13]Jonathan: What are the next steps? Like, what are we, what are we working on next? So you're going to get some referrals happening. What else is happening?[00:22:19] Angela: So we're going to test the system for referrals just to make sure that everything works. Um, and then we start onboarding, referring providers. So meaning your, primary care providers that refer patients through, that's going to be, that's going to be a, Oh, that's a long process. Um, but we're gonna focus on, um, kind of blasting to them that we're up for functional.[00:22:48] We're going, please sign up once again. Low barrier to use two minute sign up and you can send your first referral. That's the exciting part. And then we have other specialty groups that are interested in joining two already, which is awesome. So I'm actually thinking we might even have to queue them, which I.[00:23:12] Never thought that we were actually going to have to have a queue. I always thought we would be like going to them and saying, okay, I think you guys need to get on and then like trying to sell it. But I think we already have . Enough that are interested and it's just, it's the snowball effect. As soon as you get a few on, then everybody sees, how about hopefully how well it's working and we've designed it to scale.[00:23:35]Because this is based off of a workflow that we've been doing with general surgery. That was not scalable. So we learned, I think we've learned a ton there. And so that's exciting to see.[00:23:50]Growing the Waitlist[00:23:50]Jonathan: I'm looking forward to seeing that waitlist grow[00:23:52] Angela: be careful about calling it a weightless grow because we're in surgery.[00:23:55] Jonathan: Oh, right. Yeah, no, we don't want our waitlist to grow. we have this really long wait list to get into our software, but it, the goal of our software is to[00:24:03] Angela: Does it reduce the wait list?[00:24:05]Jonathan: Can, can Clinnect Clinnect itself?[00:24:08] Can we use Clinnect to manage our own wait list?[00:24:12] Angela: Oh, no maybe. In a way that's the way it works though.[00:24:21] Jonathan: So, okay. Yeah. So our wait list is growing. Your wait-lists are shrinking.
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