Gaining a Foothold in US Healthcare, Education, and Social-Service Markets

Friday, January 07, 2022

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By Synthia Laura Molina, Managing Director Central I.Q., Inc.

The U.S. healthcare, education, and social-service sectors can be a promised land for innovators, entrepreneurs, and executives in the U.K.—and the Irvine Gateway Soft-Landing Program can provide reliable hands-on help to those entering U.S. markets and navigating the American business landscape.

U.K. pioneers entering the States need to consider the fit between U.S. opportunities and U.K. mindsets around culture, competencies, brand equity, revenues, operating efficiencies, earnings growth, risk mitigation, competitiveness, scalability, and—for certain enterprises—salability, speed to favorable liquidity events, and investor metrics.

In the Irvine Gateway Program, we recommend shelving assumptions about the Land of Opportunity, how to do business here, and what innovations to pitch—and approaching U.S. market, corporate, and product development as if starting from scratch.

America’s healthcare, education, and social-service markets are a patchwork of public, private, and voluntary enterprises. We say in the U.S., “If you’ve seen one (insert enterprise category here), you’ve seen one (insert enterprise category here).” For this reason, a good initial market-entry step is to gain a revenue-generating foothold—ideally, paid pilot program—on U.S. soil. That way, you can examine the business scene in America “close up and personal.” With a reliable foothold, you can better influence early adopters, and (as we Americans love to say) bootstrap your growth (e.g., scale up in the U.S. using profit from the U.S.).

To flourish on U.S. soil, it helps to have the right pilot-program partner: an enterprise that cares about social benefit and your success (not just their profit and their success). Finding this partner can require a certain degree of discernment around American business models, motives, and money.

American healthcare, education, and social-service markets continue to evolve from fee-for-service (FFS) payment models to value-based payment (VBP). Like beauty, value to the American buyer is in the eye of the beholder. Your value proposition may need to differ if the beholder is in a volume-driven fee-for-service (FFS) market versus an outcomes-accountable, value-based payment (VBP) market.

Fortunately, your Irvine Gateway Soft-Landing guides can help you identify the more value-oriented U.S. stakeholders, knowing these tend to be more receptive to breakthroughs, best practices, and benchmarks like yours—and more willing to collaborate with U.K. companies around paid pilots.

Even so, experience tells us the most successful U.K. pioneers on U.S. soil have compelling financial stories to tell (even as they work to improve the wellbeing, productive capacity, and socioeconomic status of individuals, organizations, and communities).

While some U.S. businesses are mission-driven and follow management philosophies like those espoused by Peter F. Drucker, W. Edwards Deming, or Stephen R. Covey, UK innovators, entrepreneurs, and executives should be aware that conscious capitalists are the American exception, not the rule.

Most American businesspeople have heard an urban myth that speaks volumes about prevailing motives in the good ol’ U.S. of A. You might as well hear it from us, right now. When asked why he robbed banks for a living, a famous 20th Century American bank robber purportedly quipped, “Because that’s where the money is!”

If you want to succeed in U.S. markets, follow the money—and have a money story to tell!

In summary, Irvine Gateway’s go-to guides understand the patchwork of public, private, and voluntary enterprises in U.S. markets. We know how to differentiate between fee-for-service buyers and value-driven buyers. We understand when to talk social benefit and when to talk cold, hard cash.

With our help, you can sidestep the mercenaries and win over more altruistic American partners who are talented stewards and business leaders—and who (as the saying goes) do well by doing good.

As U.K. innovators, entrepreneurs, and executives, you can count on Irvine Gateway Soft-Landing guides to help you win paid pilot programs with the right U.S. partners, set down roots in rich American soil, and take your rightful place at the forefront of the New World across the Pond.

That’s the American way.

About the Author:

Synthia Laura Molina is a C-Suite business strategist, program director, and content producer with more than 25 years of experience in the healthcare, education, and social-service sectors. A tech-savvy serial entrepreneur who understands the pressures facing innovators, entrepreneurs, and executives, Molina spent the first seven years of her career serving in progressive cross-functional roles at multinational corporations like Johnson & Johnson, Smith+Nephew, and Baxter International.

Today, Molina and her team lead market, corporate, and product development initiatives for profit-minded social-benefit pioneers committed to building flourishing enterprises. Focusing on high-value convergence markets created by disruptive events, technologies, and industries, Molina and her team share insights, implications, and imperatives for creating winning (1) go-to-market strategies; (2) market access, messaging, and engagement strategies; and (3) preemptive market leadership strategies.

Early in her career, Molina studied and worked with Peter F. Drucker and other strategy, leadership, and general management experts at The Claremont Colleges’ Drucker School of Management, a straight shot north of Irvine, California. She was the top-ranked graduate of her MBA class in the late 1980s, directed the Drucker MBA program in the mid-1990s, and served as the Drucker School Alumni Association (DSAA) President in the early 2000s. Molina won the Distinguished Alumni Service Award after her service to the DSAA and has served on the Drucker School’s Industry Advisory Board for more than 25 years.

Category: UK Connection, Irvine Gateway, International News, Greater Irvine Chamber