An Inside Look at Our Company Culture
We are sad to see our Norway interns leave and have truly enjoyed the experience of working with them. Here’s a little inside of the MIC company culture from our interns, pictured from the left to right June, Marius, Anders and Anette.
Intern Marius’ Perspective…
When I decided to spend the spring in Houston and get an internship here, I was prepared to see a lot of oil and gas companies seeking interns. I am not overly interested in the oil and gas sector and thought that internships with oil and gas companies would be very popular among the students in my class. I thought maybe this would work to my advantage in getting an internship with a company outside the oil and gas sector. But could not have been more wrong about this. One of the most popular companies was not in oil and gas at all. It was actually in healthcare, it was of course Medical Informatics.
As I have stated before in a previous blog post, I have dreamed about getting into healthcare because of my admiration of my girlfriend’s caregiving and rewarding work. So there was little doubt in my mind when Medical Informatics presented. I actually got goose bumps all over my skin when Emma and Jess presented Medical Informatics. I was completely blown away. What a great opportunity to learn about innovative and brilliant solutions in the healthcare sector, and finally I would be able to help make a difference even though I do not have a medical education.
I have to say that I was also a bit concerned about this fact. I became very nervous before meeting with Medical Informatics. Would I actually be able to bring something of value to help Medical Informatics? Fortunately Emma, Jess and Vincent were very nice right from the start and easy to talk to. But despite my fragile nerves, they must have liked me. Lucky me!
The first few days was very informative up to a point were it almost became too much. As if the language barrier for us Norwegians wasn’t enough, we now also had all the technical terms, clinical terms and three-letter acronyms to deal with. I will admit that my head felt a bit overloaded at times.
After the initial days we were each given the task of researching the need and possible value of a solution for a specific illness or patient condition. It was very clear to me that Medical Informatics had a plan of how they could get the best out of us interns, and had prepared well to give us the knowledge we needed to perform the tasks they wanted. This was a great way to follow up all the information we were given the previous days. This way we all learned a great deal about how Medical Informatics solutions work, how the healthcare system works, about the government regulations and a lot of healthcare terminology.
I also was put to the task of doing some VC research. Finding an investor that you want to partner with is harder work than I first thought. It is not a small decision to make. This decision will affect the company the rest of its life span. I have learned a great deal about how VC companies like to present themselves, how diverse they are and how important networking really is here in the US.
The best thing about the time with Medical Informatics has been the pleasure of getting to know this incredible group of people. The whole team at MIC is very nice, impressively talented, gifted and well educated. I am really going to miss the days with this team when I go back home to Norway. Actually they seem like something more than a team, they are more like a family. And during these last three months I have really felt that they have taken me in and have involved me in every aspect of the business. I really feel like I have been welcomed into the family. For this and all they have taught me, I am very grateful.
Intern Anders’ Perspective…
I traveled to Houston motivated and eager to improve upon my skill set, meet new challenges and get a hands-on experience in an entrepreneurial environment. I wanted to find something that fit my background as an IT engineer with a technical background and my knowledge as a master student of Innovation and Entrepreneurship. When given the opportunity to choose an internship here in Houston I chose Medical Informatics Corp because it looked like a good fit, and it surly has been a rewarding internship for both parts.
There where a lot of things that made me chose MIC, first of all I had a desire to spend time with and learn from “the best”. With a management team consisting of PhDs, MBA’s and NASA-people, MIC quickly got a star for the most interesting people at the match-making event. Another thing that set MIC apart was their focus on a healthy and transparent working culture within the company. They even talked about culture as one of the first tings in their interview with potential candidates. When MIC presented themselves and their company it looked like an internship that would be lot of fun and my mind was made up. I have not been disappointed in my decision. It has been a blast!
Another big reason of why I chose to use my three months in the US at MIC was their product. When I think about how MIC differentiates itself from the crowded space that they are competing in, I actually think of an app – Flappy-bird! In healthcare there are literally thousands of vendors that claim to make an impact, just like there are flappy-bird-like apps that are not quite flappy-bird (or at least what Flappy-bird used to be). Flappy-bird was so well refined, engineered and designed that there was no doubt it was going to be a big hit. After people tried flappy-bird, all the other games were not even looked at. The app took the world by storm. I believe the same thing can happen with Sickbay! When doctors and nurses use Sickbay, the future of healthcare, they will never look back.
During my internship I had a goal to learn more about the different aspects in a business-to-business relationship, especially in an entrepreneurial setting, how small companies with few costumers deal with larger corporations, and how they gain trust and eventually a sale. MIC let me sit in on all the meetings I had time for – from partner meetings to investor pitches. I have learned so much form watching and interacting in the different situations in each meeting and I feel more prepared to attend such meetings myself in the future.
Intern Anette’s perspective…
For three months I have been an intern with MIC, and it has been an experience that exceeded my expectations in many aspects. I’m not going to tell about all things I have done and learned because it’s a long list of different things and maybe not that interesting. Rather I have chosen to focus on something that makes MIC unique and something that I really appreciated and that is the MIC team culture. MIC is very focused on building an outstanding team and has carefully grown their company, one-by-one, with talented, fun and honest people. I have felt lucky to be a part of this and have from the first day not only felt as intern, but a part of the team.
I was curious, so I asked Emma (CEO) what are the most important values when building a company. I guessed she had spent much time reflecting on this and I was right. She said: “Actually, when I was doing Kung Fu a long time ago, we had four values that were important: wisdom, bravery, sincerely and benevolence. These values I have brought with me and have implemented into MIC”.
Wisdom is about learning, always seeking new knowledge and being adaptable. It´s also about learning from your experiences and sharing it with others. I think this is a reflection on MIC. MIC has a culture for debriefing and reflections. They encourage people to bring their thoughts to the table. I think this is the largest strength MIC has.
Sincerity is about being genuine, honest and having the right intentions. I feel this should be a basic value for most companies, but sadly that’s not the fact for everyone. I was very pleased to see that MIC really cares about these things and are choosing people with good hearts.
Benevolence: As a CEO, you have to be able to put others before yourself, actively care about your team and see different needs. You also need to give people credit for their work and let people shine. This way each individual will grow and have motivation to contribute even more. These are some of the aspects of benevolence. I really appreciated Emma as a CEO; I think she is very good at this.
Bravery: To be a startup you need some extra guts because you are going where no one has gone before and there’s lot of risk to that. MIC believes they can change how healthcare is done in locally, nationally and globally and working for a start-up company comes with its own risks. That’s bravery and I really respect them for that.
Interning with MIC has given me new perspective on building a team. Choosing values and adding the right people to your team is crucial to succeed. Every new person brings in something new. MIC’s values have inspired me and are something I will bring into future work in Norway. Thanks for three fun and inspiring months!
Intern June’s perspective…
Three months went by so fast, and my stay here in Houston, TX is coming to an end. It has been an amazing journey. I got to experience and learn so much.
When I started at Medical Informatics Corp everything was new and very technical. But after a week with introductions, I felt I had a grip on how things worked around here.
Our first task as interns was to do marketing research for different apps. This was interesting and challenging. It is not always easy to find exactly what you are looking for online. But the VP of sales and Marketing, Jess Simpson, taught us a few smart tricks.
After the app project, we started doing some competitor analysis. I have taken a lot of marketing classes during my undergrad in Business Administration so it was great to see how the methods and theories I read about in the books actually get used in real-life. That may also be the reason why that was my favorite task during my internship at Medical Informatics Corp.
When the competitor analysis project was done, we started on another app. This app was very interesting, since it is soon launching on the market and there is a huge need for it. I can really see how it can make a big different for many people so I am really excited to see how the market will respond to it in the future.
As interns we have also done other exciting things like meetings with different people and companies, learning about social media and even checked out a few trade shows.
We were also included in team building after hours with the company. Some of my favorites were going out for drinks and seeing the Art Car Parade. Medical Informatics is made up of a great group of people who are really smart and talented so it is easy to learn a lot from them. They also have a great sense of humor, which is a great plus. I am going to miss them a lot.
On my free time, when I wasn’t working or being at student at Rice, I had a lot of fun with the other students in my class. We made a lot of new American friends (you Americans are so open and friendly!) traveling around a little bit and enjoying Houston. We went to the Houston Zoo, Schlitterbahn Waterpark, walking in the Heights, paddling in the river in Austin, New Orleans Jazz Festival, Free Press Summer festival and so much more. It has been an adventure from the beginning and now it is ending. I am sad to leave, but I will keep in touch with the employees at Medical Informatics Corp and see how they do in the future. To anyone considering working for or with Medical Informatics Corp in the future, I just want to say, “I would absolutely recommend you to do it!”