First of all, how are you and your family doing in these COVID19 times?
Brendan McAdams: Overall, we’re all good. We’ve been remote working for years so the transition hasn’t been as difficult as it is for others. And because the company is focused on healthcare and medical expertise, we’re a little more understanding of the science of pandemics and public health.
Tell us about you, your career, how you founded or joined Expertscape
Brendan McAdams: I’ve been focused on sales and marketing for decades, focused on enterprise sales to telecom, financial services and now healthcare. I met my business partner when we were at Healtheon(which became WebMD). He’s a hyper-talented physician and software developer that had an idea for a search tool to help identify medical expertise. From that, Expertscape was born.
How would you describe what Expertscape does?
Brendan McAdams: Expertscape identifies and then objectively ranks medical expertise by specific topic using The NIH PubMed database. This is particularly useful for health care patients and consumers that have a particularly serious or complicated medical condition, and it’s also very useful for physicians looking for someone knowledgeable to consult with or to refer a patient to. Hopefully, you never need to use the service but it’s exceptionally helpful in the event that you’re facing be serious medical diagnosis.
How does Expertscape innovate?
Brendan McAdams: We pride ourselves on being responsive and customer-centric, and we can typically develop and roll out new features quickly. So we’ll frequently brainstorm new ideas and then evaluate them against our company roadmap and priorities, determine the level of effort, and then add them to the list. But because we’re still small, it’s critical that whatever we come up with, it needs to fit into the core strategy of the company.
How the coronavirus pandemic affects your business and how are you coping?
Brendan McAdams: Because a significant segment of our customer base is academic medical centers, it definitely had an impact. Our strategy, and I don’t know yet if it’s the right one but it’s the one that felt right to us at the time, was to pull back a little and let them focus on pandemic. That is now starting to change as everyone gets more comfortable with this ‘new normal.’ In the meantime, we rolled out a simple application that helps people quickly see COVID trends in their specific geographic area. (www.covid.expertscape.com)
Did you have to make difficult choices and what are the lessons learned?
Brendan McAdams: Overall, we’ve been pretty fortunate. Our momentum slowed a little bit , but we were able to focus on Some development efforts and on a strategic partnership that will significantly advance the company over the next several years. We’re very excited about that and looking forward to be able to announce it soon.
Who are your competitors? And how do you plan to stay in the game?
Brendan McAdams: I guess we compete with other physician and hospital ranking services, But there really isn’t anything quite like what we do. That’s been both the advantage and disadvantage for us. Physicians and scientists really like what we do because it’s objective and rigorous, but we’re still faced with the challenge of being a new thing. The good news is that’s getting easier and easier for us every day.
Your final thoughts
Brendan McAdams: I guess my advice for fellow Entrepreneurs is to stay focused on your core objectives and be rigorous about focusing on execution. Any new endeavor, new solution, or new idea requires people to change their behavior and think differently. And that requires determination and focus, but it’s not impossible.
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