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#189 Breaking into Healthcare (as an MBA) with Veeral Desai, HBS ’07

“There’s just a massive opportunity to impact a system that is fundamentally broken. [The healthcare industry] is a fifth of our GDP. We spend more per capita than any developed country and yet we have tremendous issues around healthcare access, quality, and consistency of care.”

What do MBA applicants need to know about breaking into the healthcare industry?

Darren invites Veeral Desai, Harvard Business School MBA ’07, to share his experience moving from Bain & Company’s Healthcare Practice to senior executive roles at Vantage Oncology and agilon health. Veeral shares his best tips on narrowing your target list of organizations, connecting with alumni, and acing the recruitment process. A big part of Veeral’s roles has been recruiting MBAs, so don’t miss his advice on how to give yourself the best chance of building a successful career in healthcare.

This is Part 12 of our MBA Career Series. Looking for more career-related podcasts? Click here.

Questions

  • Introducing Veeral (0:00)
  • Veeral’s MBA journey and why Veeral pursued a career in healthcare (5:30)
  • Why and how Veeral moved on from Bain & Company to Vantage Oncology (12:00)
  • Tactics to break into healthcare (16:00)
  • Interacting with MBA alumni (24:30)
  • Acing the healthcare recruiting process (28:00)
  • Key skills to succeed in healthcare (34:30)
  • The ups and downs of Veeral’s healthcare experience (44:15)
  • How Covid has affected the healthcare industry (48:30)

About Veeral

Veeral Desai is the Chief Strategy and Development Officer at agilon health. Veeral joined agilon health in 2017 as President of Enterprise Operations, where he led the creation of agilon’s operating platform, and held P&L and operating responsibility spanning the Western and Eastern regions of the company. Prior to agilon, Veeral served in several senior executive roles at Vantage Oncology (most recently as President of Operations) overseeing the growth and development of Vantage into a leading national cancer delivery network. Before joining Vantage, Veeral spent nearly a decade as a leader in the healthcare practice of Bain & Company. Veeral received his B.S. from the University of California, Berkeley and holds an MBA from Harvard Business School.

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