Name: Natalie Yeadon
Business: IMPETUS Healthcare Inc., a company that designs and builds privately branded online healthcare communities for stakeholder engagement
Location: Toronto, Canada
Reason for starting: Attitudes and behaviors don’t change overnight, though we expect them to; we have been socialized in the “transactional” corporate paradigm. IMPETUS is hoping to change this. We believe in continuum thinking, which allows people to interact with information at their own pace and in their own way, to truly participate in cost-effective “open source strategies” to move agendas forward. We build and host private cloud-based software platforms to suit pharmaceutical company needs. The IMPETUS team doesn’t just sell software, we sell support and project management for online programs, all under one “digital roof.” We’re a niche space focusing on private online communities for the pharmaceutical industry and healthcare providers. In effect, our communities collect “tribal knowledge” that is often lost in organizational changes. Both IMPETUS owners each have over 18 years pharmaceutical experience; having been in pharma ourselves, we know how busy subject experts can get, and how streamlined programs can improve efficacy. This credibility and our keen understanding of the legal and regulatory requirements in life sciences has enabled IMPETUS to grow quickly over the past several years.
How do you define success? I started my career as a radiation therapist, treating babies with tumors and neuroblastomas, which permanently changed my perspective on life. Facing life-or-death situations daily made me realize that my day-to-day concerns paled in comparison to big health issues. I worry less about the “what if” than the average person, which allows me to make successful, risky strategic decisions for IMPETUS. We help our customers increase efficacy, customer reach, and knowledge transfer at the fraction of the cost of traditional means, and with less effort, meaning they have time for the medicine.
Biggest Success: IMPETUS has had a revenue growth of 340% over the past 2 years. We presently work with multiple high-profile pharmaceutical companies. Janssen Canada uses our product for all of their commercial and medical teams. In their internal survey, Janssen found that IMPETUS was the most widely used and understood digital platform in their organization. The Janssen feedback has been so positive that we’re creating a bespoke solution for their HR, compliance and training departments.
What is your top challenge and how have you addressed it? Everyone who hears about our business model comments that this is a solution that could work in myriad industries. But addressing several different industries would dilute our sales. Since we are a small company with untapped healthcare potential, we have decided to focus our efforts in the area that we know best, and not get distracted in other industries at this point in time. Our belief is that laser focus and doing a few things extremely well is what will position our company for success and differentiate us from our competitors.
Who is your most important role model? I look up to Mitch Joel, the president of Twist Image (although he prefers the title Media Hacker). I respect him for how he took social media during its infancy and focused on it with laser precision; he has become an international pioneer in this space. I would one day like to follow in his footsteps as a pioneer and expert in the field of online community building.
Edited by The Story Exchange