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Camilo Isaza, Co-Founder of Opt Health on What He Learned Becoming a First-Time CEO

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Entrepreneurship is often idolized in the business world, and today’s founders are likened to the vanguards and inventors of the past. Since the majority of the workforce reports to someone, entrepreneurs and their unconventional path are looked upon with fascination and reverie. Yet, it’s not an easy road to start your own company, something Camilo Isaza, co-founder of Opt Health, knows firsthand. We caught up with the CEO of the concierge telehealth platform—which focuses on addressing and optimizing men’s health issues through proactive and preventive medicine protocols—to hear his story of founding, pivoting, and launching a business amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, and what he learned in the process.

Q: Can you tell us what Opt Health does?

Camilo: In short, we optimize men’s health. We reconnect men with health, strength,, wellness, and sexual vitality through the science of preventive medicine. We built an innovative telehealth platform that gives men access to everything they need to optimize their health and longevity, including personalized treatments involving testosterone replacement therapy, sexual wellness, supplements, health coaches, and a proprietary digital health dashboard monitored by highly trained physicians.

Q: What makes your company stand out?

Camilo: There are four aspects differentiate Opt Health: (1) a core team with domain expertise and passion for our mission; (2) doctors that are experienced and highly-trained in preventive medicine and men’s health; (3) medically-proven and effective treatments; and (4) our proprietary telehealth platform built from the ground up with physician input that improves convenience and outcomes for all.

Q: What do you credit to your success—did anyone help you get to where you are today?

Camilo: I’m lucky to have had various professional mentors throughout my career who helped me successfully navigate through large organizations at a young age. They took an interest in me, believed in me, encouraged me to always take on more responsibility, and to apply for promotions and roles that I assumed were beyond my reach. If I had to identify one individual, it would be Ian Koniak, a successful corporate executive at Salesforce who not only helped my sales career but also counseled and encouraged me to take the leap to start Opt Health. His confidence and belief in me has played a huge role in transforming my identity from corporate employee to entrepreneur. I was also the beneficiary of the professional growth and leadership development program at my previous employer, and I made sure to infuse these values into Opt Health’s DNA.

Q: What has been an unexpected hurdle, and how did you manage to find the silver lining in it, or turn things around?

Camilo: We were ready to launch Opt Health in March 2020 when the COVID-19 crisis hit. Our launch was, like most of the world, put on pause until things began to function again. However, during the early days of the pandemic, we encountered an opportunity to use the work we had done in a way that would benefit the fight against COVID. We teamed up with a group of doctors in SoCal and repurposed our technology to screen, test, and treat COVID-19 patients. We submitted our new platform, StreamMD, to the Square and Google Small Business Hackathon and won first place in the healthcare division. Our entire team was thrilled and inspired that we could build something so quickly that contributed toward helping our nation bounce back from a health crisis. We ended up donating our prize money to LatinX charities that support developing entrepreneurship, education, and the arts, as a way of giving back to communities that have given me so much.

Q: Lastly, what are the 5 things you wish you knew before becoming a CEO, and why?

Camilo:

  • Sometimes software development can take longer than expected. Dates and commitments to those dates are critical. I am in constant communication with our CTO and he always finds ways to deliver.
  • Design—it’s an iterative process to find the right aesthetic. More often than not, designers have considered some things I had not, and we work together to make it both beautiful and functional.
  • Delegate more. I can’t do everything alone and I realize to succeed as a company I should delegate more, and trust, expect, and forget in order for the department heads to deliver results. We’re all growing here.
  • Hire people that take full ownership, responsibility, and execute no matter what. We can’t grow as a company if I can’t rely on each other. Our people are given the opportunity and step up and we do everything we can to make sure they do. Hire people that you can trust and are self-motivated. Give them the opportunity to grow, extend, and accelerate themselves and their careers. Sky’s the limit in terms of opportunity here.
  • Winning Wednesdays. This is when we meet as a team to get high level and out of the weeds. Moonshots, funny ideas, cool integrations, interesting stuff we’ve read, etc. Just for the fun of it, but it generates lots of great ideas and enthusiasm.

(Syndicated press content is neither written, edited or endorsed by ED Times)

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