Company Culture

How We're Improving the Way We Showcase Our Product at SpineFrontier

Why We Value the Way We Showcase Our Products

We’re celebrating an improved product showcase and education space.

At SpineFrontier we’re always looking to improve. In 2016 we did that in a big way by relocating to our new office space in Malden, Mass. We’re closer to Boston, have a bigger lab, a bigger workshop, we’re a short drive to our manufacturing partner to facilitate in-person collaboration and we have much more room to grow in the company. With new space came empty walls and hallways, which we saw as opportunities to showcase our strengths and educate both internally and externally about our product.

Our walls speak for the company and to the company. This is one of the largest mechanisms for sharing information and engaging the team. These shouldn’t be static and dull, but ever-changing, informative and exciting.

Display Stand Development

How We're Improving the Way We Showcase Our Product at SpineFrontier

We went into this project knowing we needed to elevate our implants. Our team brainstormed multiple times to conceptualize a platform that could be modular enough to work for each system, whether it involve screws, interbodies or plates. After lots of configuring, model making and testing fit, we found a system that would be able to highlight our implants in the variety of environments that they would live. Each placard would be able to show the implant placement in situ – within a disc space or between spinous processes – while still showing the size range offered and an actual implant that could be removed for closer inspection.

We created the series of demo sets not just for the visiting surgeons, but for the employees. We believe we should be surrounded by the products we created and are so proud of. Sharing our product with people from other teams spreads excitement and awareness of the value we create for surgeons and the patients. We designed these displays to accentuate our implants – the size range, materials and companion products. highlighting their design, functionality and the ingenuity that went into their development.

Our team has attended many events since the completion of the plaques, which has given us an opportunity to take these displays on the road and showcase our work to surgeons at national spine conferences.

We look forward to connecting with those interested in our operation. Schedule a VIP Tour with us to learn more about our Less Exposure Surgery Technologies and Techniques by calling our office at 978 232 3990.

Surgeons, this New SpineFrontier Initiative Could Help You and Your Practice

Surgeons, This New 7 Steps SpineFrontier Initiative Could Help You and Your Practice

The Purpose Behind the 7 Steps of Surgeon Onboarding

SpineFrontier has unrolled a new initiative in customer support called the 7 Steps of Surgeon Onboarding. The 7 Steps are one of the tools the SpineFrontier sales and customer support teams hope will help acquaint surgeons with the many opportunities for industry support and involvement available through the SpineFrontier and KICVentures ecosystem.

The purpose behind the 7 Steps isn’t complicated – it’s not even that earth-shattering – it’s mostly about building and maintaining relationships. But, as anyone knows, a purpose as fundamental and basic as relationship-building can also be one of the hardest things to do well. Thus, the SpineFrontier Sales team decided to implement the 7 Steps of Surgeon Onboarding as an internal structure to help SpineFrontier team members do a difficult job well.

The basic premise of the initiative is this: SpineFrontier engineers, executives, reps, sales people, (basically any SpineFrontier employee’s) first goal is to understand each surgeon’s needs on an individual basis. This has, historically, been one of SpineFrontier’s greatest strengths – something that has differentiated it from the larger, faceless, medical device companies. SpineFrontier team members know their surgeons on a personal level. This level of relationship drives them to ask the most human questions. “Who is this surgeon? What gets her up in the morning? What is she passionate about? What makes her so good? Where does she want to go? How can I help her get there?”

The next step is to help surgeons understand SpineFrontier: “Does this surgeon know all the ways we can support her?” Helping each surgeon understand the opportunities available to them at SpineFrontier is the harder part. Because SpineFrontier is nimble, creative, and surgeon-led –these opportunities are often more plentiful and diverse than a surgeon-customer might imagine, and they are tailored differently to each person.

For instance, SpineFrontier has always offered the traditional opportunities for surgeons to work on product development and innovation, but it’s also provided less traditional opportunities of supporting surgeons in business strategy for opening hospitals or surgery centers. SpineFrontier has created research opportunities for surgeons wanting to contribute to a particular research topic. It’s partnered with other surgeons to develop overseas, opportunities for medical philanthropy. Its supported surgeons in creating personalized, compelling marketing materials. It’s facilitated surgeons involvement at teaching and speaking events. The opportunities are as diverse as the customers themselves – something that the 7 Steps of Surgeon Onboarding is meant to help SpineFrontier team members communicate to their surgeons.

The final steps of the initiative hinge on documenting and planning professional milestones with each surgeon (this entails a one year plan, and a five year plan outline of what a surgeon hopes to accomplish) and brainstorming how the SpineFrontier team can specifically support them in achieving these goals. The final steps also focus on helping each surgeon execute his or her milestones while providing ongoing support from SpineFrontier.

Ultimately, the 7 Steps of Surgeon Onboarding is a tool of support and structure in pursuit of the most basic, and hardest of goals: fostering genuine relationships and reinforcing the personal and professional pursuits of those focused on better serving patients. At the end of the day, this is what SpineFrontier is: an enterprise of bettering people’s lives by investing in surgeons and patients.

Why Our Team Went Questing at Boda Borg (and Why Yours Should, Too...)

Why Our Team Went Questing at Boda Borg (and Why Yours Should, Too…)

Recently, a Swedish company called Boda Borg opened a few blocks from KICVentures’ headquarters in Malden, Massachusetts.  With seven locations in Sweden and one in Ireland, Boda Borg is staking its first claim in North America. Chad Ellis, the head of Boda Borg Boston believes that Boston is a perfect market for Boda Borg. It has everything: corporations seeking healthy team building activities, educated families wanting to do smart things with their families and college kids looking for cheap entertainment.

Chad Ellis, the head of Boda Borg Boston believes that Boston is a perfect market for Boda Borg. It has everything: corporations seeking healthy team building activities, educated families wanting to do smart things with their families and college kids looking for cheap entertainment.

As part of their opening promotions, Boda Borg invited a team from SpineFrontier to check out the facilities and “quest.” Mike Perry and I tagged along to take photos and see what the team’s experience was like.  A week later, my creative team from KICVentures followed suit and quested together for an evening.

“Questing” is a sort of real-life gaming experience. Teams of 3-5 people enter a quest together –physical and mental challenges set up in a series of rooms. Once a team successfully solves a quest, they can move onto the quest’s next level. Completing an entire quest the first time is rare. Teams fail frequently and must start over from the beginning –repeating rooms until they successfully reach their quest’s conclusion.

In fact, failure is foundational to the Boda Borg experience. David Spigner, President and CEO of Boda Borg Corporation and Boda Borg Europe greeted the SpineFrontier team and explained the rules of Boda Borg, concluding with: “We sell failure. You are going to fail, fail, fail until you find a way out.”

Boda Borg is an alternate universe in which failing is…well…fun.

With so many recent editorials and studies lauding the importance of failure in developing tools for success, the invitation to fail as a team seemed timely, like a mini experiment in team dynamics. Actual failures –in life and in the work place –while incredibly valuable for gaining understanding and self-knowledge -are not exactly carefree team-building activities.  Boda Borg is an alternate universe in which failing is…well…fun.

There is an addictive element to questing, to entering into a room, looking at all the clues and trying to figure out how to pass through its obstacles without signaling the red alarm that blares when you’ve failed. Jeremy Crossgrove, an industrial designer at SpineFrontier, explained the addiction of an analytical problem-solving that engages you experientially, “Almost every failure was a learning experience but there was no direct feedback so you don’t always know why you had failed. Our team’s response wasn’t really frustration. I think we had our own ideas of what caused the failure so we wanted to get back into it to try new hypotheses.”

I found that questing with people I work with every day was fun. Strengths came out in quirky and comical ways –ways that I was entertained by and ultimately grateful for.  It turns out that our media guru, Anders Johnson, is a really good rock climber, and figured out how to hack the obstacle course room on the second time through. Our graphic designer Mike Perry revealed a heretofore disguised energy of puppy proportions –pushing us onto the challenge after challenge when our team’s energy threatened to flag. And Brett Clair, KICVenture’s Director of Art, solved the trivia room faster than I could read its clues.

But the interesting thing –beyond the strengths that were displayed, was the attitude toward failure that emerged. The team’s responsibility for moving through the obstacles together removed any sort of individual assignment of blame for when we did fail. Added to the problem-solving teamwork was refreshing sense of working out together –in the truest sense of the term. Some challenges were physically taxing, so when you failed them, there was disappointment but there was also that secret sense of satisfaction that you would probably have sore muscles the next day, and that was at least something.

Charles Maneval, Research & Test Engineer at SpineFrontier said his impression was that Boda Borg was “…thrilling, exciting, great team-building. I’d definitely go back. The challenges were very exciting –physical in nature, but they also tested your mind and required teamwork.”

If you ever have a chance to go questing at Boda Borg, the SpineFrontier and KICVentures teams recommend it.  As Winston Churchill once said: “Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm.” Boda Borg is a valuable venue for experiencing that relationship between failure and success.