Personal

A mentor once told me to to learn something new each year. Below are examples of activities I’ve invested a year into learning and the lessons I’ve taken from them.

Rowing

In high school, I was a nerd (video games, math team, newspaper.) Many of my friends were rowers and I decided to try it. Not only did it help me get in shape, rowing taught me the value of teamwork since you could never win as an individual. In business, it still has three applications for me

  1. The value of hard work
  2. The value of collaborating
  3. The importance of maximizing shareholder value — rather than focusing on my size of the pie

I focus on growing the pie.

Pictured: (bottom) is the 1993 HOC with me in a bucket 6 seat. (top) My daughter (Rhea) who took up Coxswain 27 years later.

Golf

In 2019, my 7-year old son (Raj) started getting into golf. A coach encouraged me to at least learn the basics so I could play with him. During Covid, I got hooked. I am terrible but have fun.

While most of the projects are 1-2 years, it is clear to me golf will be 4 years at least. Now that my entire family is into it perhaps it will be a family activity we can do into my old age. 

In many ways, golf is like business or medicine. 1) Strategy is important but the execution is 90% of the game. 2) While it is easy to get upset about a bad shot, recovery from bad events is what can separate a good company from a great one.

Business School

I had trained as a doctor and engineer. While I had founded companies prior to 2013 and worked at St Jude for 2 years at that point, I had no formal business training. The company was kind enough to send me to MIT Sloan where I focused on finance. I learned that finance is the language of business.

To this day, when I innovate, I ask how the innovation will affect the balance sheet, cash flow statement, and income statement. I learned that (contrary to popular opinion) there is not a conflict between patient interest and financial interest. If you work in medicine the interest of the patient is in the long-term interest of the company.

Riding

My daughter who enjoys riding to separate herself from school.

Volunteer Work

  • Twin Cities Youth Rowing, 2020
    • Organization dedicated to expanding rowing for local high school students who normally do not have access to rowing
    • Managed to continue and expand program despite COVID
    • Board member
  • President, MIT Club of MN, 2017
    • Significantly increased membership (4X), tripled number of events (3 to 10 a year)