Doctorpreneurs: Dr Chris Jones
Doctorpreneurs of Doctology is pleased this week to showcase an interview with Dr Chris Jones.
Chris is a Specialist Anaesthetist and Software Developer, specifically the Founder and Director of HosPortal.
Sydney-based, he is married with three beautiful children and when not working or coding he enjoys a white wine and spending quality time with the family.
What organisation/startup/alternative pursuit did you found?
HosPortal (there have been others, but this is the main one).
What is it’s noble purpose?
HosPortal is all about better management of healthcare staff by allowing better communication. Rosters and on call duty are a matter of life in our industry, yet everyone wants to balance their work and life - hence the need to make sure rosters don't clash with leave or other activities, people can swap their shifts with each other, and everyone is sure who is on call at any time to ensure those who are on duty can be contacted in a timely manner and we can all deliver the best and safest care for our patients.
Tell me about the first 10 years of your life?
I was born in Australia of an Anglo Australian mother and an English father. I lived in a small seaside town in the northern Illawarra of New South Wales called Stanwell Park.
At that time it was predominantly working class, with lots of coalminers. I went to the local primary school where there were three classrooms - Kindy/1st/2nd, 3rd/4th and 5th/6th.
It was a great place to grow up - mountains to climb, streams to swim in, the ocean to surf. We were allowed to wander as long as we came home by sunset.
When I was 9 years old, my father bought one of the earliest personal computers you could buy, the Exidy Sorceror, and I learned to program first in Basic and then in the machine language Z80. I never looked back. I have been described as "the love child of Orac and Deep Thought".
What age were you when you had your first paying job? What was it?
After I moved to Sydney, my first job at age 12 was as a paper boy - they still had those in 1981!
At that time the Sydney Morning Herald was 15c - which was a practical number as I was usually given 20c and told to keep the change. I lost out big time when they upped the price to 20c!
What made you want to be a Doctor and what speciality did you choose?
In my teenage years I wasn't particularly social and spent a lot of time either studying or building software on computers and I was concerned I didn't spend enough time with people, so medicine seemed like a good choice.
The need for order and immediacy led me to choose Anaesthesia as a speciality, and I think it was a good choice - its a job I still love today.
What made you want to be an Entrepreneur? When exactly did you decide?
I really fell into entrepreneurship - I have designed and built software since those early days, and when others saw my software they'd say, "Hey, how do I use that too?".
From there I partnered with others to develop my software further and bring it to market. Having made that leap, I found I loved the excitement of business development, and they joy that comes from finding others love to use the software tools I build.
Are you still practicing as a Doctor now? If yes do you intend to stop if your organisation takes off?
Yes I still work as a full-time clinical Anaesthesiologist - but I'd relish the opportunity to spend more direct time with my commercial and software team when the time comes.
I don't think I will ever give up my clinical role entirely. I think it helps me to provide the best software for health professionals like myself.
Why do you think traditionally many Doctors struggle with entrepreneurship?
I think most are not really interested, and even if they are they don't know where to start.
What is your favourite quote?
How about two, one real, one fictional:
"When the facts change, I change my mind. What do you do, sir?" - John Maynard Keynes
"I am a trafficker of information - I know everything I can" - The Merovingian, The Matrix Reloaded
What would you do in the event of a Zombie Apocalypse?
Hang out with Rick Grimes. I'd also be asking "How the heck do they power their muscles without a blood supply and oxygen?"