David DePoyster of MedSource on the Business Side of Health Care

by Arkansas Business Staff  on Monday, Jan. 20, 2014 12:00 am  

David DePoyster

In 2000 I began teaching a medical sales class one evening a week for the University of Central Arkansas. Since the genesis of that class, I’ve hired more than 30 of my students and placed many others with medical companies. It was an unorthodox way to find talented people, but it worked and continues to work great.

What was the smartest business decision you ever made?

To joint venture with physicians and not just sell to them. Physicians make great partners when they are contributing clinical expertise and professional management of a company or venture. I hear it said all the time that physicians are poor businesspeople, but that isn’t entirely true. Physicians are full-time clinicians who don’t need to be in charge of the implementation or management of a project. When they oversee the clinical side of businesses and optimize that area, they do very well and are great business partners.

What was your biggest business mistake or regret?

Not paying attention to my wife’s intuitive advice on a partner. Having partners is an essential element of equity funding and business development. I naturally think, “Hey, he or she is a great person. They’ll be awesome to work with.” My wife, on the other hand, has a very sensitive “BS-ometer” and warns me if she doesn’t get a good feeling about people. When I’ve gone against her feelings about particular people, it’s not turned out well.



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