Matthew Garms is the Member Outreach and Marketing Manager for ContextMedia, Inc., a mission-driven patient education company that partners with healthcare professionals to educate patients on how to manage their conditions through lifestyle changes. Matt is a huge Chicago sports fan and was constantly mistaken for Ralphie from “A Christmas Story” growing up. Connect with Matt on Twitter and Google +.
BusinessInterviews.com: Tell us more about ContextMedia.
Matt: ContextMedia (CMH), in my opinion, is a breath of fresh air in the medical space. We are a mission-focused company that’s determined to help patients better understand chronic conditions while enhancing physician waiting rooms to be more education-centric. Our co-founders, Rishi Shah and Shradha Agarwal, are two of the most intelligent, forward-thinking individuals I have ever had the pleasure of working with. This means that CMH is an ever-evolving company that has its sights set on changing the patient/physician/clinic relationship. Our company is built on hard work, determination, and genuine ingenuity.
BusinessInterviews.com: Your business model targets a focused audience. How do you continue to stay ahead of competitors seeking to carve an already small pie?
Matt: CMH has made a daily goal of learning one new thing from our members and/or the offices that we speak with about our service. We understand that we don’t have all the answers. In knowing that, we embrace technology and the idea that change is good. In today’s medical landscape, there are a lot of clinics that have great ideas on how to service their patients better. We take pride in listening to them. We also strive every day to strengthen our relationships with our members; we are always asking for honest feedback on how we can make the service better. One size does not have to fit all.
BusinessInterviews.com: Have you had any pushback from consumers? How do you respond to it?
Matt: Honestly, we don’t get that much pushback on our service. The problem lies in what people are used to when they walk into a doctor’s office. For the past 25 years, patients have been told to pass the time by reading a magazine or watching the news until they’re called into an exam room. We are turning that concept upside down by saying that wait time is actually very valuable to patients. Education plays a major role in the lives we live. It’s something we need to embrace to stay healthy, but at the same time, we must not get overloaded with useless information. We sift through all of the available information and present the most relevant and educational bits that will speak directly to why they are sitting in the office.
BusinessInterviews.com: What is one specific strategy you apply to all clients?
Matt: We listen and customize. It’s amazing to me how often people today fail to listen to what members (or potential members) are truly asking for. We learn so much by asking, “What can we do to make this a better service?” With that, we listen and customize to each clinic’s specific needs and wants. We want member clinics’ patients to have a “wow” sensation when they’re looking at our TVs and tablets. We’re trying to partner with clinics to reach as many patients on a personal level as possible. This is something that goes a long way when trying to put patients at ease while educating them.
BusinessInterviews.com: What is some advice you can offer for an office or hospital seeking to integrate technology into the waiting room?
Matt: One of the biggest tips I can give is for people to embrace change and technology. Our service is something that’s meant to help, not cause headaches. It’s a simple service, but it gets rolled up in the school of thought that all technology is complicated (like EMR/EHR). We take the technology side and strip it down for the offices. All they have to do is point to the spot where they want it to go — we take care of the rest!
BusinessInterviews.com: Where do you see ContextMedia in 5 years?
Matt: I get asked this question a lot as our company grows. The honest answer is forward. We’re going to continue to push the envelope and stay ahead of the curve. We want to help evolve the patient/physician/clinic relationship. In five years, I see us in at least 20,000 waiting rooms and 40,000 exam rooms, with multiple new products impacting patients pre- and post-clinic visit.
BusinessInterviews.com: What’s one tip you can give to other young business leaders?
Matt: Focus on making yourself an expert in at least one vertical before trying to do too much too soon. When you’re an expert in your specific field, you’ll find yourself looking at ideas or thoughts from a 360-degree view. This will help you evolve and push forward. Stay true to your goal, and don’t let outside voices influence you.
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