We caught up with Geneial to learn more about them…
Tell us about your company. What problem are you trying to solve?
Geneial is working on solving some of the biggest bottlenecks in healthcare. We are working to align incentives between patients, researchers, doctors, and pharmaceutical companies to more rapidly bring new and improved treatments and medications to those who need them. Our first products are Bridge, a data management platform for researchers, and Advocate, a patient-facing app to help patients learn more about the conditions they have and to connect them to the researchers who are working on solving their conditions.
How did your company get started?
Geneial was started by two brothers, Dr. Adam Hansen and Chris Hansen, in 2020. Adam got his PhD with the goal of starting a company in the healthcare industry, and Chris, an engineer, was diagnosed with an autoimmune disease in 2019 that runs in their family. Adam had firsthand experience during his PhD with his work on discovering new genetic diseases, and was disappointed by how long it took (more than 4 years) for patients to get a correct diagnosis. Adam and Chris put their heads together and came up with a private data exchange architecture to help break down some of the barriers holding back progress in the space.
Why is your team well positioned to solve the problem you’re tackling?
Adam and Chris are both technical founders with business acumen and strong advocates of T-shaped skill sets. Adam received his PhD in computational genetics from Baylor College of Medicine in 2021, and previously directed a life sciences consulting firm with Fortune 500 clients. Chris has bachelor’s and master’s degrees in computer engineering with six years of engineering experience, as well as an MBA. Through their different networks, they have strong connections to potential partners, customers, and investors in healthcare, as well as a strong engineering knowledge and a vast network of talent to draw from. Adam and Chris like to say they’ve been working together for more than 30 years, and were even in a band together in high school!
What’s the biggest lesson you’ve learned along the way?
There are a few lessons that stand out:
- Don’t take things personal; don’t make things personal
- Working hard >> credentials
- Ego is the enemy
- Figure out and focus on the most important things
- Don’t micromanage; enable your team through accountability
- Strategy: 1%; Planning: 10%; Execution: 89%
What resources do you rely on to help your company grow?
- Shoobx has been immensely valuable for helping accomplish many administrative, legal, and investor-related tasks
- ClickUp for planning, project managements, and documentation
- Texas and Utah networks for talent in the biosciences
- Our fellow team members for their knowledge and skills
- So much more; we need to rely on a lot of different resources to help make our life easier–our investor network, Gusto, Zoom, Slack, AWS, Calendly, and the NIH SBIR program to name a few
Anything else you’d like to share?
Working in a startup can be difficult sometimes, but it’s important to support each other and enable your team for success. The way the Geneial team sees their job is primarily through the lens of risk mitigation. Startup teams must constantly evaluate the risks to their business and prioritize their time in such a way to reduce the risks wherever they pop up, whether in strategy, product, finance, or HR. Sometimes it’s like playing a game of whack-a-mole when unexpected tasks suddenly come up, but it’s important to operate in a proactive mode rather than a reactive mode as much as possible. As a founder it’s also important to value and prioritize your physical and mental health and to take a more holistic view about work. Make sure to eat well and to find time for exercise, to think long-term and not sacrifice your health for short term gains in the office.