Zoom On - Kent L. Gale, KLAS Founder

Love One Another
Kent L. Gale is KLAS Founder and Chairman of the Board of KLAS Enterprises LLC. Kent founded KLAS in 1996, when he saw a gap and set up KLAS Research to provide unbiased reporting of client satisfaction in the healthcare IT industry. KLAS’ mission is “to improve healthcare technology delivery by honestly, accurately, and impartially measuring vendor performance for our provider partners.” Kent has been deeply involved in healthcare IT for 35 years serving healthcare providers (Intermountain Healthcare), software vendors (Medlab, Sunquest, 3M, GTE, Compucare) and research/consulting organisations both nationally and internationally.

1.      What are your key areas of interest?
As a company leader I am very interested in candidly spotlighting the performance of technology vendors and consultants in healthcare. Specific interest is tied to what is hot in the industry at the time. Today it is interoperability, analytics, population health and technology-assisted “everything”, like computer-assisted coding and natural language processing.

2.      What are the major challenges in your field?
The key challenge is magical thinking (takes a miracle somewhere to be successful) on the part of suppliers and buyers. When great vision is translated into real deliverables everyone wins. If we look at revenue cycle solutions the actual delivery has been abysmal since 2000. If we look at Population Health today it is overrun with hordes of suppliers sharing wonderful visions and too much magical thinking.

3.      What is your top management tip?
Get the right people on the bus. Hire incredibly passionate, capable and honest people with a sense of urgency. Make sure honesty means “telling the whole truth AND stopping the misunderstanding of the truth.”

4.      What would you single out as a career highlight?
Sitting in a room full of industry CEOs at Deer Valley, Utah in September 2014 discussing how to avoid magical thinking so their provider clients could be more successful and in the end, each supplier would naturally be more successful.

5.      If you had not chosen this career path you would have become a…?
I originally aimed at becoming an Air Force pilot during the Vietnam War. Maybe I would be flying for Delta today.

6.      What are your personal interests outside of work?
Outside 22 grandchildren that fill my life with incredible joy I would say it is hiking in the Rocky Mountains (the Wasatch Range here in Utah). I love mountain biking, playing basketball and soccer, and especially a good game of flag football. My love in high school was pole vaulting but I have passed that along to our grandchildren with a new fibreglass Skypole I purchased for use in our backyard. I do plan to serve another mission for the Mormon Church like a yearlong mission my wife and I completed in Lisbon, Portugal in 2011 helping the poor and needy learn how to be great employees and find employment.

7.      Your favourite quote?
My favourite overall quote comes from the bible, “love one another”. The most practical motivating quote came from my sweetheart, “if it is to be, it is up to me”.

Kent is a graduate of Brigham Young University, and has lived in Brazil, Germany and the Philippines. He has travelled worldwide exploring the use of HIT and is a frequent presenter at national and international conferences. He has served on the College of Healthcare Information Management Executives (CHIME) Board of Trustees and received the CHIME’s 2006 Lifetime Achievement Award. Currently a member of CHIME and HIMSS, he also serves on the CHIME Education Foundation Board.

KLAS Research

Published on : Tue, 13 Jan 2015

Kent L. Gale is KLAS Founder and Chairman of the Board of KLAS Enterprises LLC. Kent founded KLAS in 1996, when he saw a gap and set up KLAS Research to pr

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