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    Daniel Williams
    Daniel Williams, MBA, MSEM

    In the latest episode of the MGMA Insights podcast, Daniel Williams sits down with Scott Becker, a name synonymous with healthcare media. Known for his Becker’s Healthcare platform, which includes newsletters and podcasts, Becker has been a significant figure in the industry. He will be a mainstage speaker at the MGMA Operations Conference in Chicago this month. The conversation with Becker followed his journey from law school to healthcare media, offering valuable insights for medical practice leaders.

    The Harvard Crucible

    Becker’s path to becoming a healthcare media mogul was a testament to his resilience and adaptability. Initially trained as an attorney, Becker’s journey began at Harvard Law School, an experience that shaped his career trajectory. “I wasn’t necessarily planning to go to law school,” Becker recalls. “I took the LSAT and the GMAT, did well on the LSAT, and ended up getting into Harvard Law School. It seemed like a good next step.” This unexpected turn of events was just the beginning of the challenges he would face on his path to success.

    At Harvard, Becker engaged with other brilliant minds, including future president Barack Obama and legal scholar Eric Posner. Even though Becker was a third-year student and Obama and Posner were One Ls (the term One L, made famous by novelist Scott Turow, refers to first-year law students at Harvard), it was evident that “they were just playing a different intellectual game than I was,” Becker says. In this Harvard crucible, Becker nurtured his intellectual curiosity and drive, eventually leading him to healthcare law and media.

    Building Becker’s Healthcare

    Becker’s move into healthcare media was driven not only by his passion for the industry but also by his strategic thinking and ability to seize opportunities. “Originally, we were competing with [a well-entrenched] print publication,” Becker explains. We realized we couldn’t win against them in print, so we decided to beat them digitally.” This strategic pivot to digital media was a game-changer, allowing Becker’s Healthcare to thrive in a rapidly evolving landscape.

    Another pivotal moment in the company’s growth was hiring Jessica Cole, who became the CEO and president. “Once Jessica joined, we got much more serious about planning and growing,” Becker notes. Under their leadership, Becker’s Healthcare expanded its digital presence and now boasts over 100 employees. “We’ve built a fantastic culture and a great company by incrementally getting more serious about what we’re doing,” he adds.

    The Evolution of Podcasting

    Podcasting has been another successful venture for Becker, although it required significant effort and perseverance. “The first month of doing real podcasts, we had 143 downloads,” he recalls. However, Becker’s commitment to the medium paid off, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic, when their healthcare podcasts grew in popularity. “We went from a relatively small number of downloads to 300,000 downloads a month.”

    Becker’s passion for podcasting is evident. “I record seven different episodes in a day sometimes,” he says. This commitment to regularly publishing episodes has helped establish Becker’s Healthcare podcasts as a leading resource for healthcare professionals looking for news, tips and tools.

    Overcoming Challenges in Healthcare Leadership

    Addressing the stress and burnout prevalent among healthcare professionals, Becker emphasizes the importance of team building and focusing on core activities. “The trick to everything is building teams and doing what you love,” he advises. “[At our organization, for example,] Jessica Cole really runs the media company today, and I get to do the things I love doing—visiting our editorial team and health system leaders and recording podcasts.”

    For medical practice leaders grappling with stress and time management, Becker offers crucial advice: “If you build teams and can do what you love doing, it makes everything more manageable.”

    Advice for MGMA Practice Leaders

    As Becker prepares to speak at the MGMA Operations Conference, he shares overarching themes for medical practice leaders. One significant issue is the physician workforce challenge. “We have 1,060,000 physicians, but we only produce 18,000 a year for a country of 330 million people,” he points out. This shortage creates increasing stress for both healthcare leaders and physicians.

    Becker also emphasizes the importance of physical and mental health. “You have to constantly take care of your physical and mental health,” he advises. Additionally, Becker encourages leaders to lean into their passions and cultivate them. “Working hard is okay, especially if you are not ignoring your health and family,” he says. “Don’t be afraid to lean in and be a leader. The world needs a lot of leaders.”

    Becker at the Operations Conference

    You can catch Becker live at the MGMA Focus | Operations Conference on Thursday, May 30, 2024, from 4:00 PM to 5:15 PM CDT. Joining Becker on the mainstage are panelists Michael Milewski, Executive Director of Lake Forest Pediatric Associates, and Karen Marcelo, FACMPE, Director of Medical Operations at Advocate Aurora Health. They will be discussing strategic priorities in the healthcare industry. Attendees will gain a deeper understanding of how successful medical groups adapt to evolving healthcare environments and will receive practical guidance on navigating the challenges and opportunities within the healthcare market. 


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    Daniel Williams

    Written By

    Daniel Williams, MBA, MSEM

    Daniel provides strategic content planning and development to engage healthcare professionals, managers and executives through e-newsletters, webinars, online events, books, podcasts and conferences. His major emphasis is in developing and curating relevant content in healthcare leadership and innovation that informs, educates and inspires the MGMA audience. You can reach Daniel at or 877.275.6462 x1298.

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