Innovation to me is working to never settle … and to continually be obsessive over creating a continued better experience and product. This means that status quos need to continually obsess over all spectrums and that we need to realize that the greatness that got us to this point will not necessarily continue to take us to the future or that it will be sustainable as it is today. We can and must continue to evolve, whatever the discipline.
An ideal future in health care is to create a seamless, consumer-based experience that allows for ease of use in the system. Today the system is hard to use across insurance, providers, and the various go betweens in getting the necessary care. Even more ideal than this is to enable the system (where possible) to be preventative and proactive, one that anticipates needs and helps guide providers and patients alike. This is in contrast to the reactive needs patients have when something is already wrong.
As in any industry, the ability to be a successful entrepreneur involves grit, energy, and tackling opportunities that have not been addressed at all, or not been addressed efficiently. Taking a customer in focus is the best approach in all industries, health care included. Within health care there are so many touchpoints; the end point could be a clinician, a consumer using the system, the insurance industry, or any of the various processes that interact across one or all of those end points. The key is to identify the opportunities but also to then start working across the various constituents to foster ideas. Oftentimes a smaller organization has the ability to move faster than the larger companies … but taking the larger companies as a partner can serve well given their reach and existing customer base. So taking a partner along the journey can sometimes prove very advantageous.
The Twin Cities is sometimes referred to as Silicon Prairie. The innovation within this region of the country and the world is amazing. The talented individuals across a number of industries can come together very quickly and have had the ability to work among some of the country’s and world’s greatest brands. It makes the Twin Cities a unique region, in my mind, to incubate and grow ideas across a number of industries … and to do so by drawing across a large pool of very talented individuals. Couple this with the fact that many of the companies in the region help to incubate the startups and their ideas, and partner with them. They do this both directly, and through a number of incubation organizations and frameworks.
I want to continue doing what I can to bring fresh perspectives to all areas that help the community. It’s an honor to put forward some of my energy and passion to help contribute to the great causes the Twin Cities are and will be known for.
Keith Tanski gravitated toward the IT world at a fairly early age programming on the Commodore 64. Since that time, he has had the opportunity to implement platforms that support multibillion-dollar books of business, create robust delivery organizations that reshape how IT services can be delivered, as well as drive innovative topics across small business, financial services and retail industries in roles as an engineer, and architecture through the role of CTO.
Today, he is a Senior Vice President in Enterprise Architecture at Optum Technology within UnitedHealth Group. His focus remains on building cross-functional, multi-tiered capabilities to help integrate various capabilities across the company, which ultimately pave the way for change and innovation.
Keith has a bachelor’s degree in accounting from the University of Minnesota. He sits on two boards for nonprofits and is also part of for-profit advisory boards. Keith resides in the Twin Cities and stays busy with his four children.