Meet the Team: Grant Lilya, Client Success Advocate

 

It’s not hard to find Grant Lilya at WELL. He’s the one with the Hawaiian shirt and checkered Vans.

The festive attire matches his personality. “I’m always extremely upbeat,” he says. “I’m never really bogged down — if there are issues, there’s always going to be a solution.”

That’s a good quality for someone in Client Success.

Learn how Grant came to WELL, why he loves his job, and life lessons he’s learned from rowing and teaching kids with special needs to surf.

What attracted you to WELL?

I was a bio major in college and had always wanted to go to medical school. I actually took the MCAT the summer of 2017. In 2018, I was at the career fair at UCSB, and ran into Sam Jo, WELL’s CISO, there. WELL was the only booth I went to that day. Soon after, I joined the company and started in operations, primarily in finance and recruiting.

But my passion was really to be engaging with our clients, so I knew that I wanted to be on our client success team. I wanted to connect with WELL’s mission-driven value.

Now as Client Success Advocate, I’m managing relationships with many of our clients, and helping implement the WELL platform to our new clients. I’m taking the handoff from sales, getting clients live, and watching them start to actually use the product.

What turned your head from medical school to the business side of medicine?

Working at WELL right out of college exposed me to the fast-growing industry of clinical communications and got me excited about a different side of healthcare. While my initial goal was to work in clinical medicine, in my current position I feel I have an immediate impact on many patient lives. That is rewarding.

I’m excited to come to work every day because our team strives to make going to the doctor as easy as meeting up with a friend.

What else did you pursue while in college?

I was a varsity athlete on the UCSB rowing team all though college. I had played water polo for six years prior to going to UCSB and thought I would continue to play through college. However I was recruited onto the rowing team and did that for four years. We won the ACRA National Championship Regatta in Gainesville, Georgia in 2017. It was the climax of my rowing career. Jake Halsey, the recruiter here at WELL, was in my boat also. We beat over 50 other crews from around the nation.

Through rowing, I learned about commitment, responsibility, teamwork, and collaboration. I have been able to implement that here at WELL with what I’m doing with my clients and my internal team..

Where did your passion for helping others come from?

I grew up in San Diego in Pacific Beach and worked for five years at Mission Bay Aquatic Center teaching kids to sail, surf, and wakeboard. Specifically I worked one-on-one with kids with special needs. The program was called Kids Included Together, so I was a KIT counselor.

I worked with kids who had cerebral palsy, down syndrome, and severe autism. It’s a rare program to find a summer camp that includes kids with special needs in the same groups as other kids. Anyone with special needs goes through the exact same activities, plays with all the other campers, and is never excluded. I got to give my full attention and energy to one camper every week. That was really rewarding!

I got to see kids develop and grow from being scared, timid, and having difficulty interacting with other kids, to a couple years later, they’re really comfortable playing with other kids, and they’re not afraid to jump into the ocean, let alone go stand-up paddleboarding on their own!

So I got to give them that bond with the ocean. With some kids, it would take years to get them to want to go into the water. I knew I was making an impact when my campers would start to push me into the water and ask me to stay in the water longer with them. That was really fun. I’m super passionate about this, if you can’t tell.

I still get text messages from parents asking if I’ll be there to be with their child.

Do you remember any particularly meaningful moments? Any particular kids that stand out to you?

A super rewarding time was I was with a camper who didn’t like going in the ocean and didn’t ever want to surf. He really only wanted to play inside. Over the course of many weeks, I was able to get him to stand up on a surfboard for the first time, which was just fantastic. His parents were there to see that. That moment was unforgettable. There was a smile on his face that was cheek to cheek. It was the highlight of his summer.

Just to see him overcome that barrier, to just be open to being vulnerable, was a huge step in his development.

How does this experience translate to your work?

I’m a pretty positive and very warm and welcoming person. And I’m always extremely upbeat and never really bogged down. I don’t get worried over things here. If there are issues, there’s always going to be a solution. It’s made me very solution driven and solution oriented. What I’ve done in the past has allowed me to enjoy my time. I’m really lucky to be doing what I’m doing and working with an amazing team.

What else should others know about you?

(long pause)

I hate talking about myself because I’d rather learn about others. I will say I have an amazing family, and we all love the band KISS.

Well, you wear Hawaiian shirts often, right?

I’ve been doing “Aloha Fridays” since my freshman year of high school. So every Friday I’ll bust out a Hawaiian shirt. I think I’ve gotten a lot people at the company on board.

I’m a huge fan of the checkered Vans. Been rocking them for a long time. You can find me in the office any day wearing them.

What do you do for fun now?

I love working out. I’m still rowing. I got to row with NY Athletic Club last year at the Head of the Charles Regatta, which is one of the largest international regattas in the world. They’re a really high-end club program. I also volunteer as a coach with UCSB rowing team.

What do you love about working at WELL?

All of my coworkers. I love what we’re doing, the impact I’m having on millions of patients. I love how if you have an idea, it can be implemented here at WELL. There is freedom of thought. Everyone has an open-door policy. If you need to talk to someone on the WELL team, you’ll get that time with them. Whether they’re the CEO or an intern, everyone is always open to a conversation.

And, you can’t beat the product — it’s amazing. It’s nice working for a team where the product backs up the mission statement.

I also don’t mind having a bar in the basement.

Where do you see yourself going with your team and with your career?

I’m in it for the long haul. The Client Success team has tripled in size in a quarter, and it will be really interesting to see what happens in the next year. In an ideal world, I’d love to see us continue to grow as a company. It’s fun being part of this roller coaster.♥

Meet the Team: Jamey Christensen, SVP of Sales

 

WELL’s brand-new SVP of Sales, wears a lot of hats

Jamey Christensen is an accomplished manager with a strong background in healthcare. A historical-fiction aficionado. A father of seven. And he’s as comfortable four-wheeling his way through the Utah mountains as he is running a meeting with WELL’s (sometimes boisterous) sales team.

We sat down with Jamey to learn more about how he got into business (he started young), his proudest achievements, and his advice to industry newcomers.

What does your role at WELL involve?

My role is to ensure that revenue is flowing into the company, so we can hire more people and we can grow this thing!

What’s got you excited about working at WELL?

The product, for one thing. There’s this major pain point in healthcare, and we’re fixing what’s broken out there. Then helping team members to grow and scaling the company are exciting to me. And it’s a fun culture; people are excited to be here, which is great.

Then there’s being able to hang out with the pups all day. It’s my first time at a dog-friendly office!

Where do you live?

Orem, Utah—an outdoor heaven. It’s basically a desert floor with beautiful mountains around it.

Who lives with you?

My wife and four of our seven children. (Three of my daughters are currently in college.) We also have two dogs: a Pomeranian and a brand-new Shih Tzu.

 

First job?

I worked on the family farm growing up. My dad bought a farm in Colorado, and my brother and I raised hay on it to earn money as kids.

Then, when I was 14, I owned a skateboard shop. My mom loaned me $250 for my business license, and I ordered all the supplies myself, marked them up, and sold skateboards to the kids in town.

Worst job?

I didn’t want to work on the farm one summer, so I decided I would try the Norbest turkey plant. I literally lasted four hours. Stinkiest job I ever had.

Where can we find you when you’re not at WELL?

Home, a lot of the time, or out on the mountain. I love four-wheeling, and one of my favorite things is to take my ATV out.

Then I go to a lot of track meets. Two of my kids in college run; so does one who’s in high school, and two of the little ones run for fun.

And finally, I love to read—especially business books and historical fiction.

 

Your top pet peeve:

When people make commitments and fail. If they struggle and fail, that’s one thing, but if they commit and then just don’t do it, that bothers me.

Proudest achievement, personal or professional?

Personal: Being a dad. My family. That will be my greatest accomplishment—although my wife deserves a lot of the credit.

Professional: I’ve had opportunities to help a lot of people. A lot of my reps are now Head of Sales or VP of sales at different companies, and I helped them get where they are.

Do you have a motto or mantra that defines you?

We have a statement in our house: “Kindness is where it all begins.” I think it’s really important to be kind first.

We wouldn’t know it to look at you, but…

I danced in the Nutcracker back when I was young. I played Mother Ginger. The kids loved it, but it was a little embarrassing.

I’ve learned this: The more things you try, the more life is a wonderful adventure. Sometimes you do things for others—like dancing in the Nutcracker—and it’s a wonderful experience.

The people you admire most are:

One of my former mentors taught my a lot about how to treat people and how you can help people as you do your work. Then I did my master’s thesis on Abraham Lincoln, and learned a lot by studying him.

But the two most influential people in my life were my grandma and my mother. My dad died when I was 15, and my character was really developed by the two of them.

What advice would you give to someone starting out in the field?

Be the person in the room who works the hardest. If you jump in and you learn everything you can about the product and the industry you’re in, you’ll always find a path forward.

Also, be a student. You can’t ever stop learning. Things change, business models change. You have to be able to adjust to what’s happening around you.♥

 

Meet the Team: Thor Clark, Chief Technology Officer

 

For our first installment of WELL’s Meet the Team Feature, we’re excited to interview Thor Clark, WELL’s CTO. Thor is approaching his one-year anniversary at WELL (he joined in March 2018), and is especially proud of the rockstar product engineering team he’s built.

What do you do at WELL?

I’m responsible for product, engineering, technical security, and technical operations.

Where do you live?

We live in the Westside area of L.A. I love that Southern California weather—it’s great for getting out with the kids and dogs.

Who lives with you?

Two kids, two French bulldogs, one wife.

A typical day in the life looks like…

There are no typical days! WELL is growing fast, so there’s generally recruiting activity, whether it’s interviewing, sourcing, or working with recruiters. There’s always a team-building component, whether that’s one-on-ones or training activity. There’s some customer engagement or prospect engagement, vendor relationship management, product activity, architecture discussions, and planning. Sometimes there’s travel—visiting customers and partners, that kind of activity.

There are always big rocks and little rocks: there’s making progress on big, long-term projects and also dealing with short-term issues, making sure both are moving forward.

First piece of code?

I wrote an assembly language version of Conway’s Game of Life when I was 12.

First job?

Delivering newspapers–that ages me, right?—in Paradise, California.

Worst job?

I once spent half a day selling vacuum cleaners over the phone. I’d literally take a page out of the phone book and start calling people.

Your top pet peeve (or three)?

Self-driving car technology should be better than it is! In general, I’m frustrated by things that aren’t well designed.

Your proudest achievement, personal or professional?

Professionally, I’m proud of having been part of three successful startups with good outcomes: Investools, SignNow, and Tabula Interactive.

More personally: I dropped out of school to do my first startup, and then I went back and finished school. I went out in the world and did stuff, but I still got that degree. I feel pretty good about that.

We wouldn’t know it to look at you, but…

I played trumpet, then baritone, then tuba, then sousaphone in high school. I worked my way up to bigger and bigger instruments over the course of a few years.

And I was a firefighter! I spent a summer fighting forest fires in Northern California.

The people you admire most are…

My mother, definitely—she put herself through Stanford Medical School late in life. Tom Brady’s pretty impressive, too.

What advice would you give to someone starting out in the field?

Be passionate about learning. Be focused on people—users and coworkers—and think about what drives them and what they’re trying to accomplish. It can be fun to brain-tease and problem-solve, and don’t lose sight of the end goal.

Find work that you genuinely enjoy. “Finding your passion” is an overused and vague phrase, but find a role, team, and mission that make you enjoy going to work every day.


Thor Clark leads a team of 20 engineers, Product Managers, and Program Managers.

To see current opportunities to work at WELL, see our Careers page.

 

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