You may recall that few years ago, I wrote breathlessly about the joint venture being mounted by Berkshire Hathaway, Amazon and J.P. Morgan aimed at bringing health care costs under control in their organizations, and likely going beyond that corporate triad to offer the services they came up with to other companies as well.  

BUT. What you will see is that, despite my bullish predictions, this  venture is going belly up. The reasons? Check this out. Lots of things went wrong here. Atul Gawande, noted physician and healthcare thinker, had been appointed CEO. He bailed on the organization, as did other key players.

More generally, the venture, ironically named Haven, didn’t turn out to be one. Rather, three years of experimentation taught Haven’s team one major lesson. Healthcare is tough and multifactorial, and bringing together plans that could satisfactorily serve the employees of these disparate organizations turned out to be a tougher nut than they originally believed.

Bottom Line. There are apparently limitations to the generalizability of  expertise. Mastering overnight delivery, investment banking or running a conglomerate doesn’t necessarily guarantee success in a complicated space like healthcare!

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