To celebrate our 10 year anniversary, MD Ranger is going to spotlight team members who have played an integral role in the growth of our company. In our first installment, we are highlighting our Chief Marketing Officer, Allison Pullins.
Allison is a healthcare technology executive with more than 12 years of industry experience. As CMO of MD Ranger, Inc, Allison is leading the charge to help make physician contracting more data-driven and less of a headache. She has experience guiding and executing corporate strategy, building teams across marketing, sales, and customer success, and cross-functional collaboration.
Prior to joining MD Ranger, Allison was on the leadership team of Crimson Market Advantage, a business intelligence platform that helps hospitals better understand physician relationships and referral patterns. She also served as a Senior Manager in the Research and Insights division of The Advisory Board Company.
Allison has domain expertise in physician contracting, compensation, and hospital-physician relationships. She has been the lead speaker in more than 60 educational webinars to thousands of healthcare professionals across the US and has been published in Becker’s Healthcare. She has advised clients from over 200 healthcare organizations.
Allison’s enthusiasm and passion for personal and professional growth has inspired her commitment to mentoring and coaching. As a women’s college graduate, she is especially interested in mentoring up-and-coming female leaders and helping women navigate career and parenthood.
Tell me how you first got involved in with MD Ranger.
I first heard about MD Ranger from my husband, who at the time worked with one of the MD Ranger founders at a market research company. They needed someone with a strong background in sales and client services, who understood hospitals and the healthcare industry. My roles at The Advisory Board and Crimson Market Advantage fit the bill, and I started working at MD Ranger in July of 2012...nearly seven years ago.
Did you ever imagine you’d end up where you are professionally?
Definitely not! When I was a little girl, I wanted to be a princess. Seriously, though, I come from a family of teachers, doctors, cooks, and pastors--all professions that are ultimately in the service of others. Getting into healthcare at the start of my career thirteen years ago was absolutely influenced by my family.
What has surprised you most about working at MD Ranger?
How difficult executing a compliant physician contracting policy can be. Even the most progressive organizations we work with still struggle with documenting FMV for all arrangements. Another thing that surprised me is the manpower it takes to produce our benchmarks each year. With over 36,000 agreements in our database that generates over 300 benchmarks a year, you can imagine what an effort it takes to report our benchmarks.
What do you find most challenging about your work?
I wear a lot of hats at MD Ranger, which both challenges and delights me. My days are often unpredictable and as a company that’s expanding fast, we experience our share of growing pains. But at the end of the day, I always remember that our subscribers have much harder jobs than I do! I hope we’re able to make their lives just a little bit easier with MD Ranger.
The focus on physician spending seems to be growing. Why do you think that is?
There is growing pressure to tackle exploding health care costs in this country, and for good reason. Physician spend is a meaningful piece of this (gigantic) pie. The average hospital in our database spends just about 8.5 million dollars a year on non-employed physician contracts each year--and these are for providing non-clinical services!
What do you think will change in hospital/physician agreements over the next five years?
We’re already seeing changes in compensation to incentivize physicians on quality and patient satisfaction. We’re also seeing the evolution of arrangements like co-management agreements that are meant to give physicians accountability for performance across both care quality and cost. I believe we will continue to see these relationships evolve. I also see physician employment here to stay, and will probably even increase despite the losses that hospital organizations take by employing doctors.
What's it like to work at MD Ranger?
No two days are ever alike. We’re helping our subscribers solve complex problems, so there’s a lot of intellectual stimulation and continuous learning. I love that part of my job. I feel like I am helping produce something so important to hospital operations that our subscribers can’t do their jobs without us. Talk about being needed and appreciated in a great way!
Who have been the most influential people in your career?
I have been lucky in my career to have received some fantastic mentoring. My first mentor was a boss of mine at the Advisory Board who changed the way I thought about “managing” people to “leading” people. Her no-nonsense but kind approach to coaching has inspired me so much. I am very close with a group of eight other full time professional women who are also mothers of small children. We are senior marketing/communications executives, doctors, venture capitalists, attorneys--it’s an eclectic and ambitious group. I turn to them for advice and support, especially with matters that intersect career and family. Having a “squad” of women to support you is so important for working mothers.
Do you volunteer or do any philanthropic work?
I do. I am involved in the fundraising arm of my children's' school whose mission it is to ensure that children have the opportunity to access quality early childhood education. We just raised $41,000 at a Star Wars themed Gala this spring--not too shabby for a 90 child preschool. The second organization I work with is extremely dear to my heart, and that’s the Marfan Foundation. Marfan Syndrome is a life-threatening genetic condition that affects the way the body makes connective tissue. My son was diagnosed with Marfan Syndrome when he was two years old, and since then, I have been fundraising and volunteering my time to advance research, advocate for those affected by connective tissue disorders, and educate people about this condition. Last year I raised over $11,000 for the Foundation; I will never stop fighting for my son and I have a lot of work to do, but am proud of what I’ve already accomplished.
What do you do in your spare time?
I’m the mom of a three-year-old and a one-year-old, so I don’t have a lot of spare time! In all seriousness, though, I spend most of my time out of the office with my family. We love exploring the Bay Area, particularly children’s museums like the Exploratorium, the Randall Museum, or the Bay Area Discovery Museum. When my husband and I sneak away, we love grabbing sushi and going rock climbing--or sometimes just relaxing over a bottle of (preferably Italian) wine. If I had an entire day to myself, I’d ride my bike (I’m a huge FlyWheel devotee), do some yin yoga, read a novel, eat a big rare New York Strip … and be asleep by 9pm.
Tell me something you’ve learned about being a professional from being a mother.
I’ve learned so much from being a parent that has carried into my professional life. If I had to pick just one thing, it would be perspective. As a parent, you are constantly making decisions and changing course and you have to be ruthless about focusing on what truly matters and forgetting about what doesn’t. Having that skill in the professional setting is invaluable because it makes you a good decision-maker.
What might someone be surprised to know about you?
I had both of my kids at home … on purpose! Being in healthcare and having clinicians as parents, many people assumed that I would have a hospital birth, like more than 99% birthing people in the US do. The midwifery model made sense for me and my family, and my two home births are the very proudest days of my life.