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January 2018

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James Maskell:

The Evolution of Medicine

James Maskell:

The Evolution of Medicine

James Maskell is on a mission to evolve healthcare worldwide, designing around the modern epidemics of lifestyle driven chronic disease. With a background in healthcare economics, James moved to America in 2005 and dove into the front lines of health creation.

He is the founder of the “Functional Forum”, the world’s largest integrative medicine conference, with over 500 worldwide physician meetup groups. His best-selling book and organization of the same name “Evolution of Medicine” prepare physicians for the next era of personalized, participatory medicine.

His latest venture, kNew Health, brings evolved medicine to the people directly by combining a best-in-class digital health record with an army of digital coaches and a worldwide network of functional medicine doctors. kNew Health started as a membership based consumer product but is now serving innovative payers from self-funded employers to sovereign nations.

James has some mega words of wisdom when it comes to business and your mindset. Before this interview was even published, I passed it along to all my friends and clients needing some serious inspiration to kick them back into gear. My hunch is you’ll find yourself inspired too! Read on….

Oh, but don’t forget to head over to kNew Health to grab Jame’s free guide on the Top 10 Ways to Save Money on Healthcare.

  1. Tell us about your business – what’s your mission; your soul’s purpose and why you created your wellness business or service?

Our mission is to help mankind evolve beyond chronic disease. My first business, Evolution of Medicine, prepares doctors and other health professionals for the next era of personalized, participatory medicine, through a worldwide community of meetups, products and programs. Our flagship show, the Functional Forum that I host, supports 500 worldwide physician meetups. Our new business, kNew Health, connects combines a personal health record, an army of digital coaches and our functional medicine network.

  1. Tell us about your journey and your story….what got you to this point today?

12 years ago I had a realization that if problems could truly not be solved with the same consciousness that created them, then the only logical step would be to raise the consciousness of humanity. Based on just that insight and a hunch, I moved to America to work on the front lines of integrative medicine. Since we started the Functional Forum I’ve just been riding a wave of serendipity that has really accelerated us beyond where I expected us to be.

  1. How are you changing the face of healthcare and/or the wellness industry? How do you create, innovate or break the rules in healthcare?

Our new project, kNew Health, is brining functional medicine to the masses. We are the first payer solution that makes it easy for innovative payers like insurance companies, employers and even sovereign nations to reap the benefits of functional medicine. We do this by combining a unique digital health portal, an army of digital health coaches and our nationwide provider network.

  1. What personal and professional legacy or impact do you want to leave on the world?

Create community where none has existed, both for practitioners and regular people. I would like to lead the team that reimagined a primary care that stops chronic disease before it starts, and reverses it when it has set in.

  1. In your opinion, what is the most significant factor in healing or overall wellness?

Community, the quality and quantity of our social relationships is the most important factor. It’s been proved at the cellular genetic level and is clear from areas like the Blue Zones that have strong community as a common factor.

  1. What do you wish people realized when it comes to their health or about the wellness industry?

Changing behavior to reverse disease can be an intensely isolating experience. I wish more brands created real, offline community around their products and services.

  1. How long did it take you to reach important milestones in your wellness business?
    And, what has really helped you move the needle in making your vision a reality?

The team is everything. My partner and I have held the vision but it’s taken us to really learn quickly how to build our execution capacity and what to look for in a team. My partner is incredible at keeping the team facing in the right direction and gelling the communication. Getting the right systems set up has created the structure for facilitating the growth.

  1. Tell us about the start-up scares: Was there a moment where you ever seriously contemplated giving up?

Not really but its been a pretty wild ride. I’ve put everything back into the business for 10 years and it’s been a great ride. Every time we had to rethink the business and pivot, my wife and I typically took a road trip, did some consulting, reduced the overhead and came up with a new plan.

  1. Did you ever fail or make a substantial mistake in business or organization? Any serious challenges? How did you overcome and resolve it?

We rented an awesome building in Brooklyn back in 2011, that, in retrospect, was a massive investment without anywhere near a solid enough business to justify it. We had some great parties, and lived in the commercial space for a while, but it wasn’t the smartest plan!

  1. What action has the most impact that you’ve taken to reach your goal/s?

Being a salesperson as the best training. I made 30 cold calls a day for 5 years at the start of my career, those skills are so useful to this day. To be a successful entrepreneur you have to be able to sell people on your ideas. Customers, your team, investors, all of it.

  1. What would you tell your younger/earlier self about following your dreams?

You’ll never be satisfied with mediocrity and will regret the things you don’t do, not the ones you do.

  1. What’s the best piece of business or personal advice YOU’VE ever received?

Ready. Fire. Aim. The best way to learn is to start.

  1. What’s the #1 piece of advice you would give a new Wellness professional who really wants to make an impact in healthcare and people’s lives?

See the answer to the above question, you can’t really learn any thing about building a business in theory, because the world is changing. Do then learn then iterate.

  1. What does a typical work day look like for you?

Morning routine, recently started doing qi gong, then take my daughter to school. Meetings and calls and content form 9-3, then I have some ideation time in the afternoon and pick up my daughter at 5 from school.

  1. Stevie Wonder or The Beatles? (this, I personally must know.) 🙂

When I was 5 years old my two oldest friends and I sat in our room listening to Beatles records for hours on end, so there is a massive nostalgia element. But I’d rather go to a Stevie concert.

(Jen) Fair enough, James….Fair enough!

Check out James innovative projects at Functional Forum, Evolution of Medicine and kNew Health.

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