Hospital-Hybridization Model Quadrant Three: The Hospital Business Innovators

This week, we’re jumping into the third quadrant in the hospital-hybridization model: the business/transformation B quadrant. For a complete introduction to our hospital-hybridization model, check out the first entry of this five-part series.

The hybrid roles in the business/transformation B quadrant are the business innovators. These C-suite members look just around the corner and begin building new momentum. Based on industry trends, this quadrant takes it upon itself to ensure that hospitals are positioned to succeed in the future state of healthcare. While the last quadrant was concentrated on incremental steps forward, this crew, made up of the chief digital officer, the chief patient experience officer, and the chief innovation officer, is tasked with taking giant leaps forward.

By nature, this quadrant must work closely with clinical leaders to accomplish any of its innovative goals but that doesn’t mean it’s concerned only with clinical breakthroughs. Instead, it’s concerned with how the structure of the business will have to morph to continue successfully – like turning a Blockbuster into a Netflix. This quadrant stays up at night thinking: what should hospitals do to ensure they don’t miss the boat to new, innovative business models?

The chief digital officer (CDO) is one of the newest additions to the hospital C-suite, and they’ve had their work cut out for them from the beginning. The challenge? To bring the digital transformation to an industry that just now moved patient records off of actual paper. The chief digital officer role was created to oversee and innovate the way the hospital handles digital touchpoints (from web presence, to patient portals, to digital care delivery – the list goes on and on). Ultimately, the goal of the CDO should be to make themselves obsolete, because in a highly functional digital hospital, there would be no need for the position. Hospitals, however, have a long way to go.

The chief patient experience officer (CXO) just barely squeaks into the transformation B category, since the position was created initially to meet a very urgent need, the result of government mandates that connected reimbursement to patient satisfaction and quality metrics. However, after the initial fire was put out, some CXOs have begun to partner with chief marketing officers to change the way patients interact with hospital brands in an increasingly consumerized industry. In this way, the CXO wears two hats – they focus on the mandatory patient experience goals directly in front of them, and on the future state of healthcare consumer experience. That second hat is where their transformation B tendencies come in.

Unlike with the chief patient experience officer role, it doesn’t take a history lesson to understand why the chief innovation officer (CINO) is considered a transformation B position. Ultimately, this C-suite member is responsible for idea generation – both ideating individually and building structures that help others to generate new, out-of-the-box ideas. This position is designed to get a 30,000-foot view of the hospital organization, identify innovation blockages, and implement new technologies or processes that help usher the hospital into a future state.

Buyer Tendencies of This Quadrant

This is a fun quadrant to sell to if you have a revolutionary product. They may be cognizant of cost and ROI, but if anyone in the hospital is going to have an innovative, “zero to one” perspective, it’s these leaders. These positions have been slowly beat into submission over the years as they have tried to innovate in an industry filled with red tape. They’re natural optimists, but they’re also often former doctors and can smell hype from a mile away. They are unlikely to buy a product heavily boasting “disruption,” because they do enough of that already. They’re on a mission to integrate and enhance – taking a page out of the consumer business playbook. They may be more receptive to a product that boasts:

“Our platform activates proven practices from consumer electronics and FinTech to bridge your business model from siloed to dispersed care settings.”


Unashamedly highlight your product strengths, but remember they’re sick of their ideas being shot down. Be realistic, and keep an eye on the horizon.

December 14, 2017
The hospital C-suite is a complex target audience.
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