IAM836- Expert Uses Technology to Improve Healthcare Operations and Products

Podcast Interview with Shane Foss

Shane is an expert in Business Development and Strategy, Sales Strategy, and Team Development. After over 20 years in the healthcare industry, Shane decided to use his passion for technology to improve healthcare operations and products. In 2018, he launched Hooray Health, an unconventional health insurance company that works hard to make healthcare coverage simple, accessible, and affordable.

  • CEO Hack: I like to get in the office early and do my work earlier so I can be available during the day
  • CEO Nugget: Love the problem and not your solutions because solutions change but the problem still remains
  • CEO Defined: A lot of humility, a lot of pressure, bring your team together, be a good listener and a coach



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Full Interview:


Intro 0:02
Do you want to learn effective ways to build relationships, generate sales and grow your business from successful entrepreneurs, startups and CEOs without listening to a long, long, long interview? If so, you've come to the right place, Gresham Harkless values your time and is ready to share with you precisely the information you are in search of. This is the I am CEO podcast.

Gresham Harkless 0:29
Hello, hello, hello, this is Gresh from the I am CEO podcast and I have a very special guest on the show today. I have Shane Voss of horae. hosts Shane, it's awesome having on show.

Shane Foss 0:38
Oh, thanks for having me. Gresh really looking forward to it. Me too. Super

Gresham Harkless 0:42
excited to have you on. And before we jumped in, I want to read a little bit more about Shane. So you hear about all these awesome things that he's doing. And Shane is an expert in business development and strategy, sales strategy and team development. Over after over 20 years in the healthcare industry, Shane decided to use his passion for technology to improve healthcare operations and products. In 2018, he lost her re health and unconventional health insurance company that works hard to make health care coverage simple, accessible, and affordable. Shane, are you ready to speak to the imcl community?

Shane Foss 1:13

Gresham Harkless 1:14
Awesome. Let's do it. So, to kick everything off, I wanted to hear a little bit more on how you got started. Could you take us through when I call your CEO story, we'll let you get started with all those things you're doing.

Shane Foss 1:22
Yeah, absolutely. So I, you know, long it was a long journey here. I think that, you know, really starting back to my childhood in my upbringing. And I, you know, I, I had a lot of really good mentors growing up. And, and I found myself in the military and, and as a surgical technologist in the military, I got introduced to healthcare where, you know, I assisted surgeons during surgery and, and just fell in love with the space. And so, you know, from there after I got out of the military, I joined Johnson Johnson worked there for a while and then ended up in with Stryker orthopedics and which was a, which was a great experience, wonderful organization. And that's really probably where, you know, most of my professional development really came from, and met a lot of great people learned a ton. And what we did was we we sold medical device, orthopedic implants, and so we're in surgery, and so really learning the clinical side of the business. And then then after that, I bought my own business and, and did very well there sold it. And then, and one of my buddies that was at Stryker called me up and said, Hey, I just got my first CEO position as a, you know, CEO of this health benefit startup, would you come work with me as my CEO, and I was absolutely. So it was a great timing. And it was a that was my first entry into the health benefits world. And so gave me a completely different view of what's going on in healthcare. But what was interesting is I could take what I had already learned in the past and kind of apply it here. And it was, you know, so I'm kind of an outsider really coming in. And so we did really well with the company, we basically sold them access to surgical bundles to large self funded employers were. And we were, you know, one of a few companies that were had done that we we taken a different strategy, and we sold 11 months after I started, stayed on another six months, and then really wanted to figure out what I wanted to do next. And so, you know, the, the path was really personal experience. I think anytime you talk to an entrepreneur, you know, they didn't just wake up one day and say, I think I'm going to do something right. Something stimulated that thought. And so what had happened to me was, I was consulting, and I, my back went out, and I'd never had any, anything like that happen. And so I went into an urgent care. And I had health insurance at the time, it was a $75 copay. I went in and I asked him, Well, how much I haven't hit my deductible. So how much is the total bill going to be? 150 bucks? Okay, great. So I paid it. I went in and they took an X ray my neck, they gave me two injections, a muscle relaxer an anti inflammatory, when they saw what they thought was a bone spur, and was irritating my nerve root and c four c five, and just inflaming my back. Great. So I'm thinking I pay 150 bucks, I'm good to go. Well, you know, three, three to six weeks later, I received an $800 balance bill. So I call him up and I said, Hey, what's going on? Why am I getting a balanced bill? And and they're like, Well, you know, you got carve outs, and they're, you know, and what other industry? Do you not know what, what you're going to get charged, right? Even when they telling you what you're going to get charged, you still have no idea and you're legally liable for it. So that was where I really came up with that idea of hurt health in the sense that we looked at, we looked at what was going on in health care. And there's really this gap between full time hourly and like salaried hourly and then even you know, if you're making less than $100,000 right now, a lot of times you can't unless your employer is paying 100% of your bill. You Can't afford it, your medical insurance bill. So, so we saw this gap. And nobody was taking care of the hourly and the part time especially. So I went out and I had the idea, I built this national network of retail clinics and urgent cares with fixed pricing, and we're the only ones that have ever done it. And so for $25, our members go into any of our urgent cares, retail clinics for 25 bucks, no balance bill, and they get the services that they need. And so that's kind of the story. It's the long story. But it's important, because, you know, it's, you know, until everybody, I don't know why, but everybody accepts this, this fact that, you know, well, you just don't know what it's gonna be. And you just, you put up with it, and then you pay the bill, if you can't, or if you can, if you can't, you know, you get sent to collections. So it's, it's a tough place to be.

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Gresham Harkless 5:49
Yeah, absolutely. Well, I definitely appreciate you, you know, telling the story, because I think definitely a lot of people that are listening to this may have either experienced that or know somebody that experienced that maybe been more on the lucky side of being able to pay it. But still, I think it creates that. That kind of hesitation to sometimes go to the doctor, sometimes you don't know what you're gonna pay. And I think a true entrepreneurial form, just like you said, Everybody sometimes just accepts it. But I think that your entrepreneur sees a problem creates a solution for for it. And I love that you're even able to do that. So I know you touched a little bit on you know, the business and what exactly you do and how you serve your clients. Can you drill a little bit more into that, and what you feel kind of maybe sets you apart? And is what I call your secret sauce that makes you unique?

Shane Foss 6:32
Yeah, absolutely. So. So really, we only focus on the hourly, whether it's part time or full time employees. And so with that, every product that we put out is a is focused, to be accessible, simple and affordable, right. And so, and affordability looks different in this population. And so what really sets us apart is that we have this provider network, that's ours, that is connected to technology. And then we use additional services to where we can offer your basic an accident, you know, sickness and accident care for, you know, less than $100 a month, I mean, we're talking, sometimes we get it down to you know, 60 $70. And so, but what which, what our goal is, is that we're trying to provide affordable accessibility to people getting into the health insurance space. And what that does is, you know, you talk about, you know, you said it perfectly, which is, yeah, sometimes I really rethink going into the doctor, well, we don't want that, right, we want to make sure that, especially with your kids mean, people are making bad medical decisions based on the financials, which is a reality. And so what sets us apart is we really, that's kind of what we live every day, that's what we focus on. And our experience is completely different than what a person, you know, an hourly person is normally going to experience because we have the mobile app we have, from an eligibility standpoint, our ID card is recognized in any provider's office, you know, normally, people would go in if they had benefits similar to ours, they would go in and they would make them pay first, and then they'd have to get reimbursed and, you know, it's a financial burden. And so with us, they go in Oh, sorry, they send the bill to us, you know, we we pull the money out, pay them, and then you know, you're good to go. So, it's, yeah, we, you know, our biggest competitive advantage is that this is the area that we focus on, and we put all of our time and energy. So we look at it like a you know, it's we're not major medical, but we tried to give that major medical experience.

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Gresham Harkless 8:39
Yeah, that's, that's absolutely amazing. And I don't know, if you feel, but I always feel like sometimes people that are not all the way in trance in industry sometimes have that opportunity to kind of see things and look at things in a different way. They don't take it as is, as you kind of said, but I don't know if that's been your experience with building the company and seeing that problem, but of course, solving it.

Shane Foss 8:57
Yeah, absolutely. You know, it's funny, because, um, you know, one of the one of the biggest issues in our space is that we have, you know, lots of competitors that have been around a long time. But they've, they've literally just, this is the way it is, and we're not, you know, we're not improving the product, and we're not, you know, it's just one of the products we offer. Well, for us, we look at a completely different, right, we, you know, we're we're customers ourselves, we we ask the question, Well, wait a second, why? Why does it provide or not? Why are they not able to see that we have health insurance, and that we're able to, we should, you know, get our $25 copay, as opposed to having paid for the whole bill first, and then get reimbursed and then fight for reimbursement from them because we paid too much. I mean, it's just a nightmare. And so, you know, so we, by by spending our whole time here, everything we focus on is how do we how do we provide tools for the employee, but the employer, how do you, you know, retain, recruit and retain better talent, you know, even in, you know, even in the current climate, we're in Were there a lot of people laid off or you know, are furloughed. It's still always a dogfight for talent, always, you know, the number one issue is always getting the right people. And so if you, you know, if we're able to help the employer provide a valuable benefit that they actually appreciate, and guess what, you know, we've done our job, we've helped them, and they're going to retain that person or be able to recruit top talent.

Gresham Harkless 10:26
And so I wanted to switch gears a little bit, and I want to ask you for what I call a CEO hack. So this could be like an app or a book or habit that you have, but what's something that makes you more effective and efficient,

Shane Foss 10:37
I like to get in the office early. And I think one of the things that helps me out is, I get my busy work done when nobody else is in the office, you know, I'm not, you know, because, you know, we have 25 employees, we're still, you know, relatively small, but, but the reality is, there's still a lot of demands on my time. And, you know, I need to make sure that I'm available to help where needed and guide and, and, and so getting all that stuff done early in the morning, that, you know, it's, you know, getting up. And I mean, like this morning, I was in office at 6am. And so, I'm here I'm getting things done answering emails, knocking stuff out, and then the rest of the day is kind of the pressures off, to be able to focus on you know, really what matters when, when my team is in, in the office.

Gresham Harkless 11:23
Yeah, absolutely love that hack. And so now I want to ask you for what I call a sea of nugget. So this could be a word of wisdom or a piece of advice. And it might be something if you jumped into a time machine, you would tell your younger business self.

Shane Foss 11:35
So I think the most important thing, especially from an entrepreneur standpoint, or or you can use it for, you know, if you're in a large corporation, and you're trying to find new markets to enter, you know, we talked about solving for a problem. So there's a couple things. So when you're solving for a problem, and you identify that problem, really love the problem, and not your solution, because problem, more than likely will remain the same, right? on some different level, it may vary a little bit, but your solution is going to change. Most definitely. And I you know, when you look at companies that fail and succeed, versus companies that succeed, it is, you know, a lot of it has to do is they're so bought into they're in love with their product. And so somebody else comes up with, you know, they're looking at saying, Man, we can do this so much better if we do XYZ. And if you're not constantly evolving your product to you know, really address the problem, then you're going

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Gresham Harkless 12:36
to get past the muscle. So So now I wanted to ask you my absolute favorite question, which is the definition of what it means to be a CEO. And we're hoping to have different, quote unquote, CEOs on this show. So Shane, what does being a CEO mean to you,

Shane Foss 12:48
um, it means a lot of humility, a lot of pressure. But really, you know, I think that the CEO is really CEO and coach, you know, you need to bring your team together, you need to be able to challenge people, you need to be a good listener. You know, I'm not trying to be cliche, but you know, it really is, you know, I've been in sports my whole life. And you know, and, and the good coaches, you always remember, and the good coaches, you, your team, they may not be the most athletic, they may not be the smartest, but when you work with them, and you give them that confidence and, and that guidance and let them fail, and, and then making sure that everybody learns from those failures. I think, you know, the most important thing is the coaching aspect of it. Because if you have a team that is not cohesive and not working together to solve the problems, as a CEO, it's your fault. And it's your you're not, you're not maximizing, you know, your talent and, and, yeah, shame on you.

Gresham Harkless 13:55
Yeah, absolutely. And I think I'm a big sports junkie, myself. So always, you know, looking from that lens, in that perspective, I love how there's so many synergies between running a successful, you know, team or a franchise versus in the same way as running a business and that coaches really, to me like a really great definition or assemble of a leader because a leader understands exactly what each member of the team is, is doing. It understands exactly what the goal is, and able to kind of merge those two and communicate to a person where they're at about what they're interested in as well too. And I think when you're able to kind of dial into that and take that coaching role, that's really when things go to an entirely different level.

Shane Foss 14:31
Yeah, absolutely.

Gresham Harkless 14:33
I agree. Awesome. Awesome. Awesome. Well, Shane, truly appreciate that definition. I appreciate your time even more. What I wanted to do is pass you the mic so to speak, just to see if there's anything additional you can let our readers and listeners know and of course, how best they can get overview and find out about all the awesome things you and your team are working on.

Shane Foss 14:48
Now. Awesome. So you can get ahold of us at horae h o ra y healthcare comm you know, we're constantly working on innovating our core products. and expanding our product line to offer, really continue to stay focused on the hourly, full time, part time population. You know, I think from a from a, you know, just a nugget to leave your, your, your listeners is, you know, a lot of a lot of people listening, if you're listening to the podcast, you're always about that self improvement. And you know, you're always looking for that one thing. You know, continue to keep pushing, and when the time is right, you'll know it. Don't go in prematurely make sure that you're, you know, you've done, you've done your due diligence, and you make sure that you're ready for the opportunity, because when it comes, it'll come and you'll know it. And it's a it's an exciting time to nervous time. But Tell you what, I wouldn't trade it for anything so

Gresham Harkless 15:46
nice. So I absolutely appreciate that Shane, we will have the links and information in the show notes as well too. But uh, I appreciate you kind of leaving us with a word of wisdom and a reminder to continue to innovate. I appreciate you for obviously doing that to help out so many people, you know, in this world, but I think it's a great reminder for us to really tap into that and then in that good, you know, lethargic or used to like where we're at, but continue to kind of strive forward because that's really where all the magic things happen.

Shane Foss 16:11
Absolutely. complacency is death.

Gresham Harkless 16:14
Yeah, absolutely. are you growing or you're dying, right,

Shane Foss 16:16
exactly. Exactly. I

Gresham Harkless 16:19
truly appreciate JJ and I hope you have a great rest of the day.

Outro 16:22
Thank you for listening to the IMC o podcast powered by 16 Media. Tune in next time and visit us at I am CEO, CEO, I am CEO is not just a phrase. It's a community. Be sure to follow us on social media and subscribe to our podcast on iTunes, Google Play and everywhere you listen to podcasts, subscribe and leave us a five star rating grab CEO This has been the mF CEO podcast with Gresham Harkless. Thank you for listening.

Mercy - CBNation Team

This is a post from a CBNation team member. CBNation is a Business to Business (B2B) Brand. We are focused on increasing the success rate. We create content and information focusing on increasing the visibility of and providing resources for CEOs, entrepreneurs and business owners. CBNation consists of blogs(, podcasts, ( and videos ( CBNation is proudly powered by Blue16 Media.

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