I get this question a lot…how do you run multiple companies?
Normally, my initial response is one of frustration because I rarely hear my male counterparts being asked this same question, regardless of how many companies they lead. Nonetheless, I can understand why this question would be important- to investors particularly. So here is how and, more importantly, why I have deliberately chosen to run multiple companies.
For those of you who do not know who I am or what I do, I run healthcare companies. I have one-ONLY one-very important goal for my entire ecosystem, and that is to unlock personalized precision healthcare for people at scale.
After spending 20 years in healthcare, first as a medicinal chemist, and then as a commercial leader introducing new companies and products into the global market, I have learned one very important thing: the answer to unlocking precision healthcare lies at the intersection of what we consider to be traditional medicine and our daily decisions.
We have proven that genetics and diagnostics alone are not enough to predict or prevent disease. Similarly, we know that all our behaviors and habits are important, but, again, not always enough to keep us well when considered on their own. What happens when we begin to integrate these two currently siloed parts of our life? What happens when we break down the veil between being a patient and being a person?
Well, answering this question is EXACTLY why I run Dragonfly Data Ventures and IVBH (which controls 3 diagnostic companies). In our traditional healthcare model, companies remain in one lane. We are either therapeutics, diagnostics, imaging, or wellness companies. There is very little overlap. Thankfully, we are starting to see glimmers of change. Therapeutic companies are starting to integrate wearable data into their clinical trials, and mental health apps are starting to consume medical data to help prevent tragedy. The fact remains that until someone redefines “health and wellness” and reinvents the innovation process itself, we will continue to see only incremental improvements in the tools available to keep people healthy.
As a woman entrepreneur, it is easier to lead multiple companies with defined visions, as opposed to building one company with a grandiose mission to change healthcare. Here is why:
Did you know that only 2% of all investment money goes to women even though companies with women leaders are 25% more likely to outperform companies without women leadership when it comes to profitability? Well, this means I must be even more strategic in achieving my ONE goal. I must create companies that have clear value to my investors, while also having clearly defined routes to profitability and liquidity.
This means I need to build companies and teams that can fuel one another by building value for each other’s markets, all while, ultimately, working towards the same mission, which is why I am building these companies in a non-traditional model.
I don’t believe that everything has to be homegrown and developed internally or that the companies need to own every piece of the building and/or commercial processes. I believe that cross-industry and cross-functional partnerships are the key to creating a self-propagating ecosystem. By leveraging partnerships across every stage of our companies’ life cycle, we can pull in a far wider array of expertise, access markets far more strategically, and ultimately, increase our chances at success.
Dragonfly is paving the way for a new era of healthcare by assembling a data ecosystem that aims to unlock personalized precision healthcare at scale to change the way we keep ourselves and our communities healthy.