Whether you attended SXSW, sent a surrogate colleague, or just followed along via tweets and blogs, you know that 72,000 artists and innovators descended upon Austin, Texas, for another big event. Every year, there seems to be the unstated challenge that the previous year must be topped. As a participant, you hope for it. As a contributor and sponsor, you push yourself to achieve it. That’s what we refer to as the X factor at SXSW.
And in 2016, three healthcare advertising agencies came together to create a wide new range of possibilities for the ever-growing Health and MedTech Track. This experimental program at SXSW would require all of the agency partners, along with MIT Hacking Medicine, to work as one team to rethink healthcare. We’re proud to say that we did just that. Let’s examine six X factors that produced some amazing results…
1. EXPERIMENTING WITH A NEW FORMAT
2. EXAMINING PATIENT NEEDS
3. EXTRACTING BIG THINKING
4. EXPLOITING YOUR BABY
5. EXCHANGING IDEAS
6. EXCEEDING EXPECTATIONS
It’s amazing what can happen when innovators come together with the common purpose of rethinking healthcare. We knew going into this process that there would be some interest and participation. We just didn’t know there would be so much. We knew there would be interesting ideas that came from the “hack”; we just didn’t realize the caliber of innovation would be so high. The agency partners were left asking a bigger question: What would it look like if big pharma implemented hackathon thinking as a standard practice for solving their big issues? Imagine breaking down a problem without the barriers normally associated with large bureaucracies. What else can technology do to improve the lives of patients? It’s clear that a disciplined approach creates better-than-expected outcomes. The future of innovation will come through the kind of X factor we experienced at SXSW.