Tweet (twēt) n.
1. A weak chirping sound, as of a young or small bird.
2. A “Tweet” is an individual message (or “update”) posted from Twitter.
Twitter is an interesting application with a very simple premise – your friends and associates are actually interested in knowing “What are you doing”. These “tweets” are constrained to 140 characters and for a wide variety of reasons people are actually interested to follow these micro-updates. As with most technologies, the original somewhat superfluous reason for which it was created has begun to find new uses, in new settings, and to be adopted by an ever expanding base. Interesting to watch and follow.
The premise of Twitter – What Are You Doing – has stuck with me during the last several months that I have been using this new tool. The reason for the reverie is the unsettled feeling I have had for the last two and half years since an acrimonious departure from my former cause. When you pour your heart and soul into something, only to have the dream denied for completely preposterous reasons, it takes some “gathering time” to reinvent yourself, or more appropriately realign yourself with a cause worthy of passion to which you can devote.
There is a recent precedent for this. While I do not support his politics, you cannot help but acknowledge former presidential candidate Al Gore for creating the template for this type of career recharging. After losing the highly contested election in 2000, in the most bitter way possible (won the popular vote, miscounting hanging chad’s, and judges determining the outcome), he had to gather himself. As the bitterness began to eat away at him, he realized that he needed a new cause, to redeploy his focus, and redirect his passion. The election had caused him to “fall out of love with politics”, and so he took up his other passion, the environment. His prodigious effort was captured in the award winning film an Inconvenient Truth which ultimately led to his winning of a Nobel prize. Impressive.
This past October, Steve and I quietly celebrated the one year anniversary of our own career freedom. After being handcuffed for 18 months in litigation, I have taken the last 12 months to re-engage in the broad and emerging Health Consumer space (is Health 2.0 a better term?). I started blogging about two years ago, and was immediately awakened to the possibilities of this new communication medium. I started connected with fellow sojourners, interested in reforming health care to create a true health care system based on the principles of quality, access, and value. I had wonderful opportunities to engage as a consultant with MyMedLab, HealthEquity, Lemhi Ventures, and most recently San Francisco On Call. My efforts have been focused on health care information technology, finance and delivery innovations, and open collaboration.
So what am I doing now?
Essentially, I have been focused on bringing in a new era of health care, enabled by technology, enhanced by open collaboration and shared learning, and tailored to each person who is accountable for their own health care decisions. Essentially, I want to “tear down the walls” that have prevented the free flow of information, failed to deliver outcomes consistent with the price we pay, and hindered the creation of true health care “system” that we as Americans demand. One patient, one process, and one system at a time.
I am still currently working as a consultant to innovative organizations seeking business acceleration in the consumer health space. I am currently engaged in an awesome project that will be unveiled before the year is out – great concept, great team, and great opportunity. I have also been contacted by Ingenix, Walmart, and other larger players about potential collaboration opportunities. Even while consulting, I have continued to evaluate, design, and test out some new concepts which tie all my interests and consulting work together back into a new concept that Crossover Health will be introducing. It will serve as an extension of my consulting services, but may very well evolve into something much more.
Just in case you were wondering. Stay tuned.