About two months into his role as Moxe’s Chief Product Officer, Alex Vannoni says he’s excited to build upon the success that the Moxe team has already achieved.
We recently chatted with Alex about the path that led him to Moxe and what he envisions for the future.
Q: Can you tell us a little bit about the path that led you to Moxe?
A: Most of my experience has been working with early-stage healthcare startups. A lot of what I’ve focused on is: How can we use technology to solve problems at scale in healthcare?
I’ve primarily worked with user-facing applications that look at digital biomarkers and other data to understand opportunities to improve health and encourage data-driven behavior change. Most recently, I was Chief Product Officer at Well, a health technology and services company with a mission to be the world’s most effective partner in the advancement of individualized health.
When I started talking with the team at Moxe, I understood the power of clinical data and why Moxe is trying to empower healthcare stakeholders to use it to run the business of healthcare.
At Well, one of the biggest challenges we were trying to tackle was engagement. How do we get people to engage in day-to-day decisions that can impact their health? Engagement requires a world-class, personalized mobile experience. We understood the principles behind behavior and behavior change. We understood world-class, user-centric design. But, without ubiquitous access to clinical data, the insights we could deliver were limited. Claims data, while an incredibly powerful source of information to inform member profiles, could benefit from complementary clinical data. And, with claims’ inherent 30-60 day lag time, you could be acting on outdated data.
A lot of what I had been thinking about—and the data challenges we were encountering—at Well were things that Moxe is solving for, and that was exciting to me. The more I talked with the Moxe team about their mission, the work they’re doing, and where they’re headed, the more I felt it would be a great fit.
A couple of months into the job, I’m happy to say much of what I had been thinking about Moxe has been validated, and I couldn’t be happier to be here.
Q: You majored in evolutionary biology as an undergrad. Why have you decided to dedicate your career to change the health, wellness, and healthcare landscape through tech?
A: I’ve always been interested in health and medicine. In college, the most common path was to go to med school and become a physician. In fact, I applied and planned to go to med school, but I decided to put it on hold. I wasn’t sure becoming a physician best aligned with how I wanted to make an impact on problems at scale.
Then, a family member was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease. In an effort to solve some of the problems people with Parkinson’s face, my brother and I posed some questions: Can data from smartphones tell us that someone has Parkinson’s? For those who have Parkinson’s, can data tell us how progressed their condition is? Can we understand how well patients are adhering to their care plans?
Ultimately, we partnered with The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research to launch and run a big data challenge using data passively collected on smartphones from our proprietary application. The challenge tasked the world’s best to use the data to help Parkinson’s patients objectively quantify the disease, manage symptoms, improve care and facilitate behavior change.
It was exciting to see how data and technology could be used to deliver a population-level impact. I got a taste of what it felt like to use technology to solve problems that could impact people’s lives in a meaningful way.
As a physician, your level of impact is often time bound: How many patients can you see in a day? Instead of going to med school, I decided to get a joint MBA/MPH and explore how I could marry the private sector and public health worlds. I’m still very much motivated by the question: What can the private sector do in the interest of public health?
Q: What excites you most about the work that you are doing? What are some of your major goals in 2023?
A: I’m not trying to reinvent the wheel; I’m focused on building on the success that Moxe has already demonstrated. As I jump into my new role, my team and I are first focused on improving our execution on client commitments and expanding the scale of our offerings.
In the latter part of 2023, we’ll look at how we can invest in value-add services that can sit on top of our core offerings. We’ll ask: How can we better deliver insights at the point of care? What can we do to deliver on Moxe’s mission to improve affordability? How can our offerings not only address affordability, but also improve health outcomes?
We have some investments that have been underway for quite some time, like the next evolution of Digital ROI™, that we’re excited to get to market. We’re also making great progress on our bidirectional solution, Convergence, by delivering insights to the Point of Care in a leading healthcare setting.
As a product person, it’s always great to see R&D projects become real products!
Q: How do you think Moxe is uniquely positioned to solve the problem of making healthcare more affordable?
A: Better access and flow of information should certainly contribute to affordability. By facilitating smarter, faster data exchange between payers and providers, we’re reducing a huge administrative burden in healthcare.
When we think about tackling the problem of affordability in healthcare, what I’m really interested in (in addition to reducing administrative burden) is: How can we reduce costs by improving the quality of care? With streamlined, smart data exchange and the delivery of actionable insights at the point of care, things can happen faster and more efficiently, leading to better decision-making. We can reduce unnecessary services and care, while still providing the access and care quality that we are accustomed to in the U.S.
Q: How would you describe your leadership style?
A: Product teams often sit at the center of a lot of the visioning and decision-making at a company. We need to take a vision and bring it to life.
In order to be a great product person, you need to be a renaissance person. You need to identify opportunities for differentiation, conduct market research, and do competitive analysis. You need to have strong technical skills so you can understand what’s feasible and if it’s a good use of resources. You need to have strong relationships, collaborate effectively with every team at the company, and communicate well.
With that said, as a leader, I see product managers as mini-CEOs of their product domain. I like to give my team members the space to own and lead their area of product.
I try to be a servant leader and understand the strengths of everyone on my team, while also delivering feedback on areas where they can grow. I try to provide advocacy, support, and mentorship in order to help my team succeed.
Q: What is something your colleagues at Moxe may not yet know about you?
A: I’m a dual citizen. My grandparents and father were Italian citizens, and that citizenship was passed down to me. My family is from Emilia-Romagna, and growing up we would go back every couple of years to visit. Having dual citizenship helps reinforce a lot of the traditions I hope to live with as an Italian American.
Q: As we close our “getting to know you chat,” is there anything else you’d like to say about your first couple of months at Moxe?
A: We’re poised to solve some of the major problems in healthcare. We have a great track record, and I’m hopeful that we can continue building on that momentum.