Kristin Rodriguez on Guiding the Hero’s Journey || EP. 160

Kristin Rodriguez on Guiding the Hero’s Journey || EP. 160

Laurie McGraw is speaking with Inspiring Woman Kristin Rodriguez. Kristin is many things, and one of those things is that Kristin is funny. Don’t confuse her quick wit and humorous approach to career trajectory (a winding path indeed!) with anything less than her seriousness in how she expects to help Heroes. Who are the Heroes? The people who are trying to improve their health while often taking on more financial risk, navigating new places to receive care, and sorting through a complicated system.

In this 2024 WBL (Women Business Leaders) Series, Kristin gives us a view to her original career plans. Plan A: Run a Coffee Shop. Plan B: Go the Naval Academy and then into military service. Seven colleges later along with a “bohemian walk about” led her to fall into healthcare sideways. This is where she fell in love. Love of serving customers and meeting their needs. Her career throughline appears to be that of service and continuous exploration of new possibilities.

As Kristin works to support heroes in their healthcare journeys, she considers these key trends:

  1. Shifting risk to the healthcare consumer. A worry as it is just too complex for people. This type of risk is as complex as the tax code and Kristin feels it is important to bridge that gap.
  2. The important race to new sites of care delivery – telehealth; more care at home; remote monitoring; more virtual care. Kristin believes we should lean in more here.
  3. And social determinants of health. Where healthcare payers are being asked to influence and quantify nonclinical interventions. It remains important to have focus where well-being meets care.

As Kristin discusses some great choices she has made along the way, these include getting her advanced degree, even while working full time and with young children. She also believes the network she has found professionally with WBL is second to none.

Best professional habits for staying sharp? Kristin is a huge believer in the power of sleep. As a recovering over achiever, she has learned to put her energy on the right things which does not mean all things. She finds that she has to continuously work on protecting her time for “deep” work. Her best advice for others is making sure just because you can do something doesn’t mean you should which has been key to her own growth as a leader.


Guest Bio:

Kristin B. Rodriguez

Chief Product Officer, Vitality Group

Kristin Rodriguez is a mission-driven healthcare executive with a 16-yr track record of launching successful products and transforming organizations to solve problems, bring people together,

and create lasting value. She has a passion for collaborating in pursuit of high-quality outcomes for health care consumers. Kristin has deep experience in change management and has led teams through the disruption of leadership changes and the uncertainty of operationalizing strategic plans and mission-derived aspirations. She also has extensive experience in systems thinking, continuous improvement, as well as product design and strategy. Kristin maintains the strategic direction of Vitality Group’s product portfolio and customer success. She supports health plans and employers across the country get the engagement they want and the health results they need from their employees and healthcare beneficiaries by helping them lead engagement where wellbeing meets care, leveraging the world’s largest behavioral engagement platform and digital health solution.

Prior to joining Vitality Group’s executive leadership team, Kristin was Chief Operating Officer of the Health Plan Alliance, a for-profit venture designed to be a vehicle for collaborative innovation among provider-sponsored, regional, and independent health plans across the United States. She was responsible for value portfolio implementation and designed specific programming goals and strategies to achieve organizational objectives. She led the teams responsible for programming execution, member engagement and insights, communication, and knowledge management. Prior to joining Health Plan Alliance, Kristin was recruited to GHG Advisors, a leading consulting and software solutions firm specializing in government-sponsored healthcare programs, where she led the creation and launch of GHG Advisor’s subscription-based content aggregation service. Kristin served as the firm’s director of marketing and corporate communications and her team executed on overall market engagement and branding, product management of the online knowledge center, and the regular introduction of GHG Advisors’ sister companies into the marketplace. Prior to joining GHG Advisors, Kristin served as the founder and executive director of RISE, Financial Research Associates’ flagship healthcare networking association.

Kristin holds a BA from the University of California at Berkeley and a Master of Science in Health Care Informatics from the University of San Diego. Kristin is a member of Women Business Leaders and sits on WBL’s Diversity, Equity & Inclusion committee. Kristin is a sitting director for CIMRO, a URAC accredited independent peer review organization serving the public and private healthcare sectors since 1972. She also sits on the National Association of Chronic Disease Directors’ National DPP Medicaid Expert Panel. Kristin presents on issues related to leading change, has led multiple workshops on incubating innovation and is often asked to educate industry executives and governing boards on managed care industry trends.


StrengthsFinders® Signature Themes

STRATEGIC: I see patterns where others simply see complexity, play out alternative scenarios, and develop sound strategies grounded in the organization’s “Why”

ACHIEVER: An internal fire pushes me to excellence and my unwavering commitment is one of the ways I inspire others

LEARNER: I am energized by the steady and deliberate journey of continuous improvement

COMPETITION: I set ambitious goals with clear measurements of success

RESPONSIBILITY: My impeccable ethics and psychological ownership of commitments make me utterly dependable