Celebrate your winnings and own your mistakes / losses
Today’s entrepreneur is Joshua Itano, co-founder and CEO of healthcare transportation company CareCar.
Itano traces the foundation for his knowledge of value-based care, community health and corporate governance back to his time at startup Alignment Healthcare. It was there that he discovered the impact a company like CareCar could have on a person’s health.
CareCar’s uses a market platform approach in which the company has independent caregivers and medical assistants and people with this background on board to transport patients to and from the doctor in their own vehicles.
The company recently raised a $ 3 million financing round led by Kapor Capital and Impact America Fund, in which Concrete Rose was a co-investor.
Why did you choose to become an entrepreneur?
I don’t think I really chose to be an entrepreneur. I saw a problem and wanted to fix it. My choice had to do with whether I thought the solution was worth the risk of starting a business from scratch.
What are your favorite startups?
AirBnB, Uber, Titan, Coinbase. I like companies that make things more accessible, be it a financial product, taxi service, earning extra income, vacationing, investing, or buying digital assets.
Why did you start your company?
I started CareCar because transportation was a constant problem in my previous organization. However, it was one of those healthcare issues that wasn’t big or sexy enough to get a lot of support for change. Although everyone recognized it as a problem and hated it, people felt they could live with it until the bigger problems were resolved. In my view, the bigger health problem is that it consists of thousands of these “little” problems, all of which must be fixed before anything changes. Each of these small problems hurt vulnerable patient populations. That was enough for me to take the risk and resolve it. In this way we were able to solve other problems with additional care and support.
What is the most frustrating and rewarding thing about entrepreneurship / innovation?
I’m not sure if there is one “most frustrating” thing to do, but I think that a lot of frustrations come with the lack of resources (time, money, people) to solve everyday problems. The best part of being an entrepreneur is working with a small group of people with limited resources and being able to actually influence the change you want. The mission’s small victories to no avail, knowing that it would not have happened without you and your team. For us, this means that one patient has one less barrier to care. A caregiver with little purchasing power. A health plan that will make a smarter decision based on the data we provide.
What’s the biggest mistake entrepreneurs / innovators make?
Give up before you HAVE to!
What are the three most important lessons you’ve learned as an entrepreneur?
- If you need it in the future, start the fundraising process long before you actually need it.
- The team’s culture and wellbeing are just as, if not more important than the marketability / viability of your actual product.
- Celebrate your winnings and own your mistakes / losses.