#Innovation and #Mentoring

I’m attending an Entrepreneur’s Think Tank at the local Career Center and the Tech Sandbox in MA’s MetroWest region. I helped start something in 2012 called Pain Points in Healthcare Mini Unconference, now Healthcare Innovators. Each of these groups assembles people with bright ideas trying to set up a viable business. Often people with more passion than practical knowledge seeking to fill in their gaps.  I am 63 years old, seasoned with energy, ideas, connections and yes – gaps. I’m older, good at what I do, and still in need of mentors and coaches. How else will I stay good at what I do? Searching for, finding, and offering mentoring is serious fun.

When my wife and I were much younger we decided to build a house ourselves – the whole house -foundation, framing, plumbing, electric, chimney, all of it. We had energy, chutzpah and huge gaps.  We’d never built anything more complex than a changing table out of a single piece of plywood. We freaked out my father-in-law with our yawning gaps. We succeeded because we knew we had gaps and sought mentoring. Mentoring came from friends, acquaintances, and family (yes, my father-in-law helped us install the diagonal flooring of rough cut oak, all the while muttering what idiots we were). Innovations come from ideas + energy + ignorance (gaps). If you know it all, you’re less likely to take a chance and try something new.

Our healthcare system is a mess.  No one would have / could have created this system. The industry is desperate for innovation. Many in the healthcare innovation business think that innovation = technology.  I think that innovation often depends on healthy relationships – how people work together: Teams, leadership, trust, lack of fear, and yes, mentoring.

Help innovation – mentor and be mentored. It’s worth it, it’s a gas.

One Comment

  • Sue says:

    Yes!! Thanks for this Danny. I’m reading Being Mortal right now–yes the healthcare system is a mess–and it all comes to together in a huge meltdown mess for the elderly and the dying. And my favorite sentence this week is “If you know it all, you’re less likely to take a chance and try something new.”

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