Why Healthcare Organizations Must Adopt Digital Marketing to Succeed in Today’s Environment with Paul Budd, Managing Consultant – Life Sciences and Digital Health at Korn Ferry Futurestep

Paul Budd, Managing Consultant – Life Sciences and Digital Health at Korn Ferry Futurestep

Why Healthcare Organizations Must Adopt Digital Marketing to Succeed in Today’s Environment

Improving healthcare through digital marketing

Why Healthcare Organizations Must Adopt Digital Marketing to Succeed in Today’s Environment with Paul Budd, Managing Consultant – Life Sciences and Digital Health at Korn Ferry Futurestep

Why Healthcare Organizations Must Adopt Digital Marketing to Succeed in Today’s Environment with Paul Budd, Managing Consultant – Life Sciences and Digital Health at Korn Ferry Futurestep

Welcome to the Outcomes Rocket podcast where we inspire collaborative thinking, improved outcomes, and business success with today’s most successful and inspiring healthcare leaders and influencers. And now your host, Saul Marquez

Welcome back once again to the Outcomes Rocket podcast where we chat with today’s most successful and inspiring healthcare leaders. I want to thank you for tuning in to the podcast today and I welcome you to go to outcomesrocket.health/reviews to rate and review today’s podcast because we have an outstanding collaborator in healthcare. His name is Paul Budd. He’s a managing consultant, Life Sciences and digital health for Europe at Korn Ferry. Korn Ferry is the pre-eminent global people and organizational advisory firm. They help leaders organizations and societies succeed by releasing the full power and potential of people. They have nearly 7000 colleagues and they deliver services through executive search, hay group, future step divisions and really across the spectrum what we’re looking at here is, Paul is super passionate about healthcare and what it is that today’s digital technologies can do to either help you take the next step or help you avoid disruption. So without further ado I want to welcome Paul. Welcome.

Thank you, so great to be here.

It’s a pleasure to have you. So Paul, what did I leave out in your intro that you want to fill in for the guest to know about you?

I mean yes pretty comprehensive so yeah I mean I live in the UK so currently work with Korn Ferry as you mentioned where the global people organizations and I’ve worked with in healthcare for about 20 years predominately within life sciences, medical devices in med tech but interesting enough in the last about five years, I’ve really started to be compassionate around how digital technology can now improve healthcare either by delivering better services through to patients or delivering better communication through the end user through to physicians. So it’s great to speak to and I really love doing these things because I’m really interested to try and give some of my experience to your listeners about what is happening from a people organization. So what I mean by that is healthcare is a very traditional industry. Okay. And what we’re seeing now with digital technology we’re seeing the scope of innovation and not need are really sort of move. But what’s important is that people need to move with that. Unless you’ve got an engaged an agile team behind it, it makes innovation very difficult in healthcare and that’s what I hope I can talk about today.

Paul super, super insightful and for the leaders listening, it’s key that we don’t forget about our people that we make sure that all the things that we’re doing in the organization to change strategy that are people are coming along with it. So what is it that got you into healthcare to begin with Paul? I mean it’s been 20 years.

As and that’s what it is, the reason is so you know I was I was recruiting in the technology space around 20 years ago. Passionate about health care in anyway from a personal perspective and what I realized about health care was the fact that I was able to work with leaders of organizations that were actually developing products and services to improve the quality of people’s lives. OK. So when I worked in tech, it was great. You know my clients were producing some really cool stuff. Was it really actually helping someone. Sounds like a bit of a cliche but it’s true you know, I passionately believe that the global health care organization. You should see it as that we need to think of better ways to improve the lives of people.

I love it and it’s the fastest way to do a meaningful work is coming into health care. So people are obviously at the center of what you’re thinking and what you guys are doing at Korn Ferry. What do you think. Let’s drill down a little bit deeper. Paul what’s a hot topic that should be on every medical leaders agenda today. And how are you guys addressing it?

It’s a great question. So I guess there’s a number of hot topics. The two things that I would say the hottest topics of the moment firstly is digital marketing. So how is a health care organization be that hospital, be the med tech company or be that a digital startup. How do we communicate with our patients who are customers by digital channels. And that’s something that the healthcare organizations have been a little bit slow to policy. And I think what we’re seeing now is the internet is jam packed with noise. You know how do you as an organizer as you get you your message out there to the right person whether that’s a patient or without a physician in a clear and concise way. How do you enagage, is the key thing, how do you engage with your audience properly? That’s one thing that is hot right now. The second thing that we’re seeing which is really hot is as organizations in health care are starting to adopt new technologies, the culture is shifting massively from a very traditional quite risk averse culture into a culture of innovation and the very definition of innovation means that things need to evolve and innovate a pace and scale. And the pace and scale is the key thing we’ve not been brilliant within healthcare pace and scale because we were quite restricted with you know regulations and things like that. So the two things you know how do we communicate to our patients of physicians and our customers. And the other thing is how do we innovate at scale.

I think it’s so on point Paul. And you’re right. I mean it’s so loud, it’s noisy in the digital market. Can you share maybe one or two tips that the leaders could take away from this conversation and apply to their businesses or their organizations?

Absolutely. I guess the thing that I think is most important is actually crafting and defining a true strategy. So what we find in digital is a lot of people think of it as an afterthought because they just think you know we need to be digital we need to be seeing digits. Let’s just go and do lots of things on social media and let’s do blokes here and there it becomes white noise and actually becomes like distractive. And effectively you know tools away from the point to try to make in the first place. So the thing I’d say to leaders is you know start about what’s the message you need to be let’s think of a concise message. What channels that we are going to use that message to communicate through and who is the audience going to be at the end of the day. And actually start small but start really focused because otherwise you know the internet is a global platform unless you can actually compartmentalize it. That message is going to dissipate into the atmosphere. So that would be my most important tip to people think of a clear strategy and execute.

That’s a great tip you know otherwise it’s deluded. And you know the other side of this Paul is how do you measure success. Right. Because at the end of the day Facebook likes can’t pay your bar tab.

Unfortunately but no, you’re right. So you measure success I think in terms of outcomes. OK so health care is all about outcomes you know whether it’s reimbursement for our products, whether it’s effectively the improvement of a patient’s health – it’s all about outcomes. Success in the digital age needs to be about outcomes because you’re right. You know you could up a million Facebook likes, so what, right?


What does that actually mean? So the key thing is how do you measure what that outcome is like and how do you then have a team of people internally to understand what that data means. Because again otherwise it’s just information. So I think the key point about measuring outcomes and how do you measure successful outcomes is having the right sort of people that understand what that data can mean for an organization and how to turn that into a positive outcome.

Brilliant. I love that Paul and listeners, this first seven minutes of the podcast if it hasn’t already been worth it for you then I think you need to rewind and relisten because this is major value that Paul is laying down here for us. Paul, give us an example of how you and the folks at your company are doing things differently to create results and improve outcomes.

So what we’re doing actually is pretty transformational. The advantage that we have at Korn Ferry most people Korn Ferry for is an executive search firm and that is the backbone of the organization and we’re very good at doing that but we’re also now really much more of an overview of a people consulting firm. So one of the things that were very successful in doing were actually doing a number of global healthcare organizations at the moment is will go in and actually understand what is the roadmap look like in terms of your digital future. So have you got the right people in place? Do you have the right systems in place? What’s the message needs to look like? And what we do is we spend a lot of time actually consulting with business leaders to really understand what the problem is right now, what’s a potential solution? Once we put that framework together and it’s become clear about what this how it’s a transformation and that’s the term we use at Korn Ferry. And a lot of these clients are going through a complete digital transformation. Once we’ve mapped that out in terms of what we need to look like and then the power of Korn Ferry comes in about really trying to identify best in class, executives and meet management organizational levels to really successfully drive that transformation.

That’s beautiful. And that theme right there are portraits of having a theme at the center of what you guys do is transformation.


That’s powerful. And what are you guys doing? You know listeners, what are you guys doing? As far as what are your themes for the year? Is transformation in the works? Is it something that you’re going to be driving or is it something that your competitors or market peers are going to be forcing you to drive? I say let’s take a proactive step toward it and work with folks like Paul and the folks at Korn Ferry to make this happen.

What’s really interesting Saul just on that point and this is some generally quite important to actually sort of relay back to the listeners. When we’re talking about transformation particularly around new technologies within healthcare, the most important thing is, is really to one have buy in from the very top because a lot of companies actually look at digital as an afterthought. We think we need something digital let’s create a small little team that do this thing called digital one. And hopefully that will be fine. That’s the first mistake you need to have confirmation from the top and you need to have a motivation from the top to make that successful. The second point is you need to have a budget to make this happen. And I think that’s really not see a lot of failures in companies actually that perhaps haven’t taken them seriously enough and what they do is they create a little team and they get a small budget associated to it 12 months down the line. They don’t really see any actions from see any results from it so they sort of you know he his way and they perhaps think about it again the following year. I think the key message needs to be this is happening guys. You can’t walk away from a digital transformation is happening right across the healthcare enterprise. And in order to do it successfully you need to look big and think about it at scale and it’s not an overnight switch and it’s not going to happen just in a couple of months. You need to start the process now. I really look about five years with the transformational plan that would be my key message to the listeners.

Great advice. And you know on the topic of failure Paul can you share a moment with the listeners of a time when you are the organization or maybe one of your clients had a setback or a failure and what you guys learned from that moment?

Yeah I mean it’s a really interesting point and I think when we’re dealing with people wanting guarantees there are going to be failings. You know we not machines at the end of the day. We do have mistakes but what’s important is we learn from our mistakes. You know I think one of the best examples where things have failed really been exactly as I mentioned earlier not really understanding what you’re trying to do in the first place. So what people do is put in a china shop approach. Let’s go digital let’s try and hire some people that sort of get ourselves… likes. But then what happens is that quite quickly you don’t get anything from that. That becomes a challenge say, we have under thousand Facebook like so what, you know I’ve got millions Twitter followers, so what? So what people have learned actually is trying to take a step back and making sure that you’ve actually got the right skill set in the business to start ways to analyze the data and actually make direct actions from that to make sure the outcomes are going to be positive and ultimately drive revenue. We’re talking about a commercial business. The reason people are doing these sort of things which drive revenue. Yes we’re talking about healthcare at hospitals and obviously in the U.K. you know we have the NHS. The outcomes are all about efficiency. So increasing efficiencies potentially reducing cost but ultimately the overarching point is improving patient care. There’s no point in having the sort of great digital transformational pieces you don’t really understand if the patients reproving or not because you defeat the objectives of it. So what we’ve learned and what we’ve worked with a lot of companies to try and help them understand is get the basics right and things who follow them from that you know a good analogy so if you’re into you know if you’re a racing car driver for example you want to be a racing car driver you’ve never done it before. You don’t go out buy an indie car and drive from day one and expect to win the championship, right. You know you need to start off in karting and then it takes sort of five to six years to get to a certain stage of competency. We can do it properly. That’s what people need to think about.

What a great analogy and I think that’s so true. You know even you look back all the way to ancient times and in the ancient texts without a vision, people perish. And listeners let’s take these words from Paul and bring them into our day to day. Let’s have clarity in our approach and be clear, crystal clear on the outcomes and crystal clear on what success looks like when the campaign is done. If we’re going to have success with it. Paul, you’ve given us some great tangible takeaways from this or really appreciate that.

No problem.

So what would you say one of your proudest business leadership moments that you’ve experienced to date.

What a fantastic question. You know I’d like to say there’s been a few. You know I think one of the things that are most proud about few years ago I did a lot of work within the startup community in digital health here in the U.K. And I think that was extremely rewarding. You know it wasn’t necessarily the most lucrative financially but from a personal reward perspective was great because what we’re actually doing is helping in a very small start ups that had a burning passion to deliver products and services to improve the lives of people here in the UK and working with these people to understand what the talent robot needs to look like in order to be successful. I actually made a great deal to me personally and I got a lot of personal satisfaction for that. I’ve done some big things in a big turnaround projects with big life science companies and that’s great but I guess you have to say personally it’s when you see the real rewards of your life when you see a company that was you know a two person start up and you’ve worked with them over couple of years. You see them now so you know 50 person organization with great product innovation with active customers that are actually delivering real benefits. You see case studies from patients saying are used product techs and absolutely transform.

That’s pretty awesome. Just you have your fingerprint on it.

Yeah exactly exactly that. You know you can go that’s something that I hope to achieve. And it’s something that’s really going to people.

That so cool. And I agree. You know I think every one of us listening to this podcast you and I are here chatting today. I think we all have it within us that we want to help people. And it’s something that we do even the smallest thing we find out that it’s had that ripple effect it just that much more meaningful.

Correct. Absolutely. I mean a really interesting example. You know without mentioning company names of I did some work recently for an organization that specialize in vaccines. How do you use digital technology to create the message to encourage people that are props in countries where they’re not aware of some of these diseases take massive action, and take massive action right now. The vaccination for themselves and for their family members is absolutely crucial, is lifesaving. And we need to work with these companies where that message where you know 15 – 20 years ago message couldn’t have got to those parts of the world. But now with the beauty of things like smartphones and the Internet and technology that company through digital channels is able to reach individuals by taking a small action you know could save the lives of the children for example.

The global effects are also just amazing.

It’s absolutely fascinating. You can talk all day about this and that’s why I love what’s happening in health care right now. And you know you know we’re in a very fortunate situation where we were that sort of the tipping point now if you like that critical mass where it’s been building for the last few years what we starting to see now is how technology is really starting to transform it. And I would personally come away to see what’s going to happen in the next 10 years. I sometimes think you know for 10 years time what’s happening in healthcare and how do I engage with my physician. What’s the monitoring situation like you know it’s like wearables times ten. Is just going to be so fascinating I’m quite jealous actually of the next few generations who are going to see some fantastic advances.

That’s awesome Paul. I couldn’t agree with you more I think we’re in one of the most exciting times in healthcare. And I think at the end of the day we all stand on the shoulders of those behind us. We’re building the future for them as the folks before us did for us.


So Paul tell us about an exciting project that you’re working on today.

Or some exciting projects where there’s a number of exciting projects I think to be honest so I guess the areas that I like to specialize in as a mage for one is on the sort of the digital marketing piece or communication of storage batteries and customers. I think the other thing that we’re seeing is really exciting now is the crossover between medical devices and pharma. So some exciting projects going on at the moment about drug delivery systems for example in how now we are using you know connected devices for example to actually not just measured dosage but actually to empower patients to take a lot more control of their own critical condition. Diabetes is a great example you know fit for probably 10 years plus now the diabetes field has probably been the leader in connectivity because diabetic patients who’ve been used to monitoring their own disease area. What we’re seeing now is that transferring to a number of other different therapy areas and I think that’s one of the exciting projects that we’re working on with a number of organizations at the moment is how do you bring tech into the traditional big world of pharma that is quite slow moving that sort of quite regulated. How do you inject that culture of fast rapid innovation at scale? That’s one of the things that are excited about are the number of projects I’m working on.

That’s awesome man. Do you guys keep a blog over there at Korn Ferry?

We do. We get a couple of different things which is great. I mean a blog is something we have we’re always there in quite a lot with social media as well. I can happily follow up with yourself to have some of that information across.

Yeah that’s for sure listeners. I asked Paul because I definitely feel like you all would benefit from continuing to follow what they’re doing over there and we’ll go ahead and Paul and you share those links we’ll put them in the show not so they have access to that thought leadership that you guys continue to provide.

We’ve got a number of different case studies as well and you know listeners are interested they can always sort of contact yourself contact me directly and I can share some of these case studies where you know we’ve really demonstrated this complete organization transformation.

Love it. So let’s definitely do that at the end of the podcast here. Paul we’ll have your share. Best way to contact you so they can do that.

Yep. Perfect.

So Paul getting to the end here. Let’s pretend you and I are building a medical leadership course on what it takes to be successful in medicine. It’s the 101 of Paul Budd. So we’re going to write out a syllabus. I got four questions lightning round style followed by a book and a podcast that you recommend to the listeners. You ready.

OK. Good.

Alright, let’s do it. What’s the best way to improve health care outcomes?

The best way to improve healthcare outcomes is to get realistic data from patients quickly using technology.

What’s the biggest mistake or pitfall to avoid?

The biggest mistake is to evolve slowly.

How do you stay relevant as an organization despite constant change?

You have to keep your finger on the pulse you have to know what the market is doing and you have to be prepared to move quickly and to be as agile as possible in today’s world.

Finally what’s one area of focus that should drive everything in a health organization?


What book and what podcast would you recommend to the listeners, Paul?

Podcast Outcomes Rocket.

Oh thank you.

There are some great ones out there to be honest probably sort of too many to mention but the ones that I’ve listened to that you’ve done so to really insightful, really good. So this is the first when you listen to listen if you check out the podcast. In terms of a book, for me personally one of the best books I’ve read recently is Delivering Happiness by Tony Hsieh. You know Tony Hsieh.

Oh he’s the Zappos guy, right.

He is the Zappos guy, so he’s the CEO of Zappos. But his whole philosophy really and why Zappos has been such a phenomenal success. It’s all about people and culture in the organization. He had a very successful you know start up which was bought by Microsoft and it just didn’t fit the culture. So he made it his life’s ambition that whenever he starts up a new business the most important thing is people. And he’s built Zappos into a billion dollar business based on having great people and a great culture. So what I do now in terms of working at Korn Ferry, we are a people organization. This is a mantra. I think people need to listen to them recommend any of your listeners and that leadership position. Check it out buy on an audiobook, get it done with download ,listen to it, is truly inspirational.

Folks take a lesson here from Paul pick up that book. It’s definitely one that I’m going to pick up as well. All of the syllabus as well as the transcript of our interview can be found at outcomesrocket.health/kornferry. You’ll be able to find all that there. Paul, this has been amazing. I really appreciate you taking the time to be with us if you can just share a closing thought with the listeners nd then the best place where they could reach you or follow you.

I can. Thank you very much for the opportunity. You know it’s been great to talk to you and hopefully some of the things we’ve spoken about are going to be beneficial. I guess in terms of that sort of the closing gambit any of the listeners that are out there certainly within healthcare that are thinking about people transformation. Think about it properly, don’t do it as an afterthought. You know people with the most important part of any organization whether that’s a healthcare product or healthcare system or medical device or life science companies. So think about your people, think if you got the right sort of culture in your business, make a plan and execute on it.


And then contact details is probably the best way so it’s just paul.budd@kornferry.com

Outstanding. Listeners Paul shared his e-mail with you. So he definitely wants to collaborate. So something that Paul said resonates with you. Go ahead and reach out. I know he’d be very welcome to hearing from you. If you want to hear about some of those case studies that he also wants to share. Reach out to him. Very insightful stuff there. So, Paul just want to extend another big thank you to you and looking forward to staying in touch.

Fantastic Saul, thanks very much and appreciate your time.

Thanks for listening to the Outcomes Rocket podcast. Be sure to visit us on the web at www.outcomesrocket.com for the show notes, resources, inspiration and so much more.

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Recommended Book and Podcast:

Delivering Happiness

Outcomes Rocket podcast

Best Way to Contact Paul:




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