Transforming the healthcare journey for over 13 million patients across Asia
Healthcare is one of the most difficult sectors for entrepreneurs. It is also one of the most rewarding. Saving people's lives, improving outcomes and reducing morbidity are all noblest goals. Cole and his wife and co-founder Grace, started DocDoc after their 90-day old daughter was suddenly diagnosed with a rare liver condition that required a transplant. Going through the motions of finding the right medical team left the duo shocked at the information vacuum in the healthcare industry. Luckily, Grace’s 10+ years of professional experience in the healthcare industry allowed her to build a robust personal network which she could leverage to find a highly experienced doctor.
Their daughter, Rand is now growing up healthy after a successful transplant. But they knew they got lucky. “We realized that finding the right care shouldn’t have to depend on luck. Like any other sector, consumers in healthcare have the right to information. They have the right to make their own healthcare decisions. The pain we went through in finding the right medical team for Rand translated into our mission”, says Cole.
Enter DocDoc.DocDoc is Asia’s leading patient empowerment company. In essence, DocDoc is creating the service Cole and Grace never had. The company’s vision is to empower patients to make data-driven healthcare decisions which are safe, transparent, and fair. Their network has more than 23,000 contracted doctors and extensive proprietary data on outcome, price, and experience which helps them measure quality in healthcare. Using this data, DocDoc supports patients to find the highest quality care for their unique medical needs.“Our process of collecting information is time-intensive (requiring tens of hours per physician) and sensitive (requiring the power of a company to demand transparency). We do this work so that patients won’t have to.”- Cole remarks.
The service is available to insured patients through insurance firms. In an industry where 57% of the policyholders do not trust their insurers, DocDoc’s doctor discovery solution bridges the gap between insurers and policyholders by creating a trusted relationship. It empowers policyholders to make informed healthcare decisions while giving a unique way for insurers to deliver a differentiated product. This approach is in complete resonance with DocDoc’s mission to transform healthcare by empowering patients to achieve excellent outcomes, efficient pricing, and have a delightful experience.
“For us, the mission is personal. We understand the perils patients have to go through because we have been there. Working towards a mission that is greater than ourselves is what keeps us going through the tough times”, asserts Cole.
“For us, the mission is personal. We understand the perils patients have to go through because we have been there. Working towards a mission that is greater than ourselves is what keeps us going through the tough times”
"Transforming healthcare. Empowering Lives"
Catalyst for Positive Change
DocDoc acts as the patient’s trusted medical advisor and guides them through every step of their healthcare journey. On inquiry, a trained doctor discovery consultant discusses the patient’s medical needs and then uses their AI-powered doctor discovery engine, HOPE (heuristic for the outcome, price, and experience), to provide data-driven doctor recommendations catered to the patient’s unique medical condition or required procedure.
Leading the way forward
Every successful company requires a great leader who can inspire a diverse group of people to work towards a common mission. Cole Sirucek is the Co-Founder and CEO of DocDoc. By way of background, he is an investor and entrepreneur with over 20 years of experience - funding, investing in and supporting entrepreneurial ventures. He has spent seven years making investments on behalf of Temasek Holdings before co-founding DocDoc. He holds dual graduate degrees from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (Sloan School of Management) and Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government.
In his free time, Cole is focussed on martial arts, adventure racing, scuba diving, and mountaineering. His passion for adventure and philanthropy has driven him to complete self-supported 250 KM foot races across China’s Gobi Desert and Egypt’s the Sahara Desert to fund medical missions in Asia.
Cole manages his time by prioritizing the important goals for each day, accomplishing the most important goal and then maybe his second important goal. This requires him to spend real time and effort in analyzing what’s important and then working to accomplish those on time. He realizes that at any moment, there are really one or two things one can do well. “In my opinion, the idea of productivity being the end goal is perhaps the wrong goal. The most successful people don’t try to optimize the last 5% of their productivity, rather they try to prioritize”, explains Cole.
“In my opinion, the idea of productivity being the end goal is perhaps the wrong goal. The most successful people don’t try to optimize the last 5% of their productivity, rather they try to prioritize.”
The Best Company Policy: Trust, Honesty, and People
Indeed, building a successful healthcare IT company is extremely difficult and requires an immense level of persistence. In his role as CEO, Cole’s strategy is simple. It is to build an organization which helps people accomplish their goals in life and at the same time accomplish a larger mission which they deem worthy. Consequently building a company culture of leading by example is of acute importance for him. “I have always been a follower of the servant leadership model. I would not ask anyone to do something that I wouldn’t do”, says Cole. The operating principles defining DocDoc culture can be broadly categorized as:
Accountability, respect, and intent
“Do what you say we are going to do”, says Cole. At DocDoc accountability is vital, followed by respecting each other’s time and assuming good intent. “It is important to start with the assumption that every member of the organization is working in the best interest of the company. This makes it easier to work as a team and accept ideas that you might disagree with”, explains Cole.
Transparency and merit
For Cole, it is highly significant to ensure that best ideas win every time. “It is not the person or the position of the person that comes up with the idea but the merit of the idea itself that should matter every time.”, he says. One of the important lessons entrepreneurship has taught him is the importance of understanding when you are wrong and openly apologizing for it. “I have seen firsthand that our leadership team is often wrong about a number of things. It happens. We are human beings. We are constantly learning. When this happens, we own up our mistakes as opposed to getting defensive and work with the team to fix the problem.”, he recollects.
Invest in people
Cole strongly believes that it is the responsibility of leaders to take care of their people. “As a leader, you should take out the time to mentor people to ensure they are constantly learning and growing”, says Cole.
Cole credits DocDoc’s success to the incredible leadership team which consists of executives with extensive experience in healthcare, technology, entrepreneurship, and management. Each of them brings unique expertise to the table and provides a different perspective on the issues at hand. “Creating and sustaining a high performing, dynamic and mission-driven team is the most important job of the CEO”, concludes Cole.