A healthy and sustainable healthcare business
Richard Burke, who built UnitedHealthcare (UNH), was a founder of UnitedHealthcare (UNH) and started with $40,000 that was borrowed against his home (from Bootstrap to Billions). However, Haven, a joint venture with the backing of Jeff Bezos, Warren Buffett, Jamie Dimon, and their respective organizations, tried to find a solution to the costs of medical care, and it did not succeed. The reason for this is believed as “a sign of how difficult it is to improve American health care radically.”What was why UNH was successful in dominating American healthcare even though it was managed by a solo entrepreneurial entrepreneur with no resources, unlike Haven? Even though it was headed by one of the most potent businesses that came together to address the problem, Haven didn’t.
I interviewed Burke to write my novel (Bootstrap to Billions). Burke could not complete an academic program for finance doctoral students because he discovered a real-life chance to study American healthcare and create solutions. This led to the creation of UNH. Here are four reasons that explain why UNH was successful.
Burke took advantage of an emerging trend. When Burke established UNH and UNH, legislation that made the health care organizations (HMOs) an obligatory option for employees of companies had been adopted by Congress. Burke was a crucial player in the process of passing the law. The legislation was the first step in allowing employees to select HMOs. UNH was the first to adopt this fashion and rode to becoming a unicorn.
Burke was a committed man. When Burke began UNH in 2000, he embraced the business full-time, even taking out a mortgage on his home to raise money to establish the business. As the industry struggled to gain momentum and grow, he decided to concentrate on the temporary business of health data management to keep the company in business. This was a crucial decision to the success of the company. Burke was unable to afford to leave. He tried different solutions until he came across the effective one. The initial approaches were slow to get off the ground the way he wanted. He changed.
Burke collaborated with medical groups. A medical system requires doctors. Burke established UNH by assisting medical groups in developing HMOs, which he supervised. Then, he sold his management business and bought the HMOs.
Burke was able to make it appealing for patients to change to his HMO. Offering corporate employees the chance to stay with their doctors with an incentive to pay, Burke made it attractive for patients to choose his HMO.
The trio of titans in American business have achieved more? Perhaps they could have learned from unicorn entrepreneurs such as Burke and the lessons of Silicon Valley.
* Begin with new trends. More than 95% of the unicorn founders that I funded interviewed, or analyzed identified an emerging trend that allowed the company to outsmart established giants. Three of the top individuals in American business, and the backing of three major companies, Haven seemed to be trying to develop a more challenging trend.
* Encourage entrepreneurs to join the new trend and keep their eyes on the prize of the unicorn. This is precise what unicorn entrepreneurs like Burke did. Burke was among the many entrepreneurs who embraced this HMO trend. Silicon Valley excels at this technique – it is the norm for numerous entrepreneurs looking to create unicorns in various emerging trends. VCs join after seeing signs of the possibility.
* Concentrate on business innovation to determine the best strategy. Burke focused on business strategy innovation like many unicorn entrepreneurs. He created joint ventures with doctors so that employees of corporate companies could have the opportunity to continue seeing the doctor they enjoyed. He then offered this benefit to companies to ensure their employees were happy and productive. UNH successfully offered employees the choice of doctors and allowed employers to choose from a range of services at a low cost.
MY TAKE: The difference between UNH and Haven’s two companies highlights the importance of savvy and committed entrepreneurs. Entrepreneurs require savvy venture-skills taking-off strategies and the ability to implement them to achieve success. The key is commitment, and it’s easy to abandon (or stop) any startup when there is a hint of trouble, especially if the founder has appealing alternatives.