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“How That Happened” Episode 46: Steve Harrison – Natural State Laboratories – Bringing Customer Service to the Forefront of the Lab Industry

Interview Transcript


Steve Harrison:


I would tell my 20-year-old self the same thing I’d tell all the 20-plus-year-olds that work here at Natural State Laboratories. Be patient. Be patient and pursue whatever you’re passionate about.


Robert Wagner:


From HoganTaylor CPAs & Advisors, I’m Robert Wagner and this is How That Happened, a business and innovation success podcast. Each episode of the show we sit down with the business and community leaders behind thriving organizations to learn how business and innovation success actually happens.


Robert Wagner:


Our guest today is Steve Harrison. Steve is the CEO of Natural State Laboratories. Natural State Laboratories is a state of the art molecular and toxicology laboratory based in central Arkansas. Steve has over 20 years of experience as a top performing sales and management executive in the health care industry. Steve graduated from Baylor University and then earned a master’s in health care administration at the University of Houston-Clear Lake. In addition to his career in the medical industry, Steve serves on the board of the Central Arkansas Fellowship of Christian Athletes. He is married to Mindy and they have three children. Steve, welcome to the How That Happened podcast.


Steve Harrison:


Well, thank you so much for having me. It’s a pleasure and I’ve been looking forward to this.


Robert Wagner:


That’s great. So, Steve, Natural State Labs has received a lot of attention in the last year for your impressive pivot and for innovation during the COVID times, but before we get to that, let’s just kind of lay some foundation and just tell folks what is Natural State Labs and why did you start it?


Steve Harrison:


Well, we started in Natural State Laboratories in December of 2018, and really the reason we had started the laboratory was, I had been in the laboratory space for the previous six years working with different laboratories around the country, partnering with physician clinics, not only in the state of Arkansas but the surrounding states. And what I realized through that seven year journey, six or seven year journey, was that while the laboratory space offered innovative technology and medicine, the one thing that I felt was truly missing was the customer service feel in the laboratory space.


Steve Harrison:


And so my focus, my purpose, in terms of with my business partner and myself, Jeff Weeks, we really wanted to redefine the lab industry. By doing so, we wanted to make sure that there was a true obsession with our clients, with our customers, in making sure that they understood how important they were to the equation and that we were going to be not only a full-service laboratory in terms of molecular diagnostics and very high-end genetic testing, but through that process we wanted our clients who are our physicians and their patients to truly have a five-star customer service experience.


Robert Wagner:


So, the experience you’re talking about, is that for the clinic? Is it for the patients? Who’s the customer there that you’re trying to [crosstalk 00:03:21] the game with?


Steve Harrison:


Yeah, it’s two-fold. I mean, when you look at the complete end user, it is the patient. For us to have these patients to be able to be tested using Natural State Laboratories services it requires physician orders. So we partner with physician clinics, nursing homes, all different types of medical facilities as a reference laboratory, which is what we are, for us to receive their samples through a physician order. We specialize, and when we started Natural State Laboratories in 2018, we started as a toxicology laboratory that was focused working with behavioral health centers and with physicians that were really needing to monitor the use of their patients’ prescription drug program.


Steve Harrison:


We quickly moved in to a next generation sequencing, which is truly the ability to sequence the entire human genome, and through that very high-end technology that we are the only laboratory in the state of Arkansas that utilizes this type of testing for specific screenings to get an understanding of the predictive measures for certain disease states, for hereditary cancer, for hereditary cardiomyopathy conditions, and then in January of 2020, we opened our molecular diagnostic laboratory. That was an interesting time because when we started that it was for urinary tract infection where we were able to utilize PCR testing that magnifies or amplifies the RNA and the DNA of specific pathogens, and then we can tell you precisely with very much high accuracy, over 99%, the number of specific pathogens that we are looking at to diagnose, and also with great speed.


Steve Harrison:


So, in a 24-hour turnaround we can tell you exactly the type of pathogen, which antibiotics would be most highly recommended to treat those pathogens, and also which antibiotics would have form a resistance, or that pathogen has resistant to that antibiotic. So, when you look at where we have come from in just the last two-and-a-half years starting out as a toxicology laboratory and then moving into really high-end next generation sequencing genetics for hereditary conditions, and now being a diagnostic laboratory where we actually tell you what type of pathogen that physician will be treating and what the treatment regimen or protocol will be for that with quick speed and very, very accurate pinpointing of results to achieve the therapeutic outcome that doctors are wanting to achieve.


Robert Wagner:


Okay. That’s fascinating and you’re using a lot of terms there, way beyond the skill set of a CPA. I just want to make sure I’m grasping the customer service into a more experience aspect to this. So, it sounds like speed is a element. I assume accuracy as well, but it also seems like a key element is just the depth of the information that I’m going to get back if I’m your customer. Is that what I’m hearing?


Steve Harrison:


Right. So, really the key behind the customer service side is, one, we always want to be accessible. When you’re dealing with much larger laboratories on a national scope it’s very difficult at times for a patient to ever get ahold of anyone in a laboratory. It’s also incredibly challenging for physicians to get someone out to their office to help them from a service side, whether it be for certain types of testing, understanding their reporting. So, we have a model to where it’s very high touch, high field. We go in, we work with the doctors to really, one, our number one goal is to create efficiency and quality, not only in their operational process. Physicians are so busy, it’s like, “Now I’ve got one more thing I’ve got to deal with.”


Steve Harrison:


Well, our goal is to help them be more efficient in their practices. So, we go in, we focus on efficiency and we focus on the quality of testing that they’re going to receive, and the quality of reporting. As a result what we’re trying to do is enhance their value-based outcomes. We’re wanting to enhance their patients’ satisfaction scores, their clinical outcomes, their speed to diagnosis, their antibiotic utilization. We want to make sure that we’re lowering the ER usage for patients, and so all that is really a main focus of what we do with working with physician clinics to make sure that those clinical outcomes are enhanced, and it’s done through… They have their own portal where they can go to and they can see real-time reporting. They see the exact report that we see when our laboratory information system produces that report, so there is not a lot of questions on how to access that patient’s report.


Steve Harrison:


And then, we also have highly trained patient-client representatives, molecular biologists, a chief medical officer that does peer-to-peer discussions with physicians in helping them make sure that they are giving those… Or being able to read that report accurately, and if they have any questions with that. We’re also in the process of working with a company that will have PharmDs on hand whenever they get a diagnostic report and they’ve got questions about antibiotic use or they’ve got questions about what type of… This pathogen is resistant to a specific drug treatment regimen, so they can actually reach out to the PharmD and have a discussion with them if they have questions about that specific report. So, it is all about really creating efficiency and quality in that physician’s practice to allow him to truly enhance his value-based outcomes.


Robert Wagner:


Very good. So, is the laboratory business or industry, is it exploding because of the technology available and the ability to go so much deeper into issues?


Steve Harrison:


It absolutely is, and the amount of genetic data and the amount of new testing that’s coming to the market really on a monthly basis is mind-blowing. So, when you start seeing the innovative technology that is available today, there are a lot of people wanting to get in the lab space, trying to get in the lab space, but one thing that I [inaudible 00:11:28] was very early on is, you can have the desire to do all of that and more, but you must be heavily capitalized and you must have a team around you that is absolutely five-star to make sure that you are, one, providing the education, that you’ve got an infrastructure in place with process and systems to allow your company to be truly, truly efficient.


Steve Harrison:


And that’s what we were able to do in the beginning when we opened our molecular diagnostic laboratory. It was two months before COVID hit. We didn’t even know what COVID was, and then all of a sudden we were in the process of validating for our urinary tract infection testing and our respiratory pathogen testing, and all of a sudden we now have this new COVID-19 pandemic, and what do we do? So, as a small start-up company that, very thankfully, was very well capitalized, we were able to partner with Thermo Fisher which is one of the largest worldwide vendors for this type of testing, for PCR testing and reagent kits.


Steve Harrison:


So we were able to partner with them and get a high-throughput solution for COVID testing. And, as a result of that, we had to sit back and really ponder this, as business owners, and we had hours and hours of meetings trying to really understand, is this something that we want to focus on? Is it going to get us off of our North Star approach? But we realized that in the state that we live in, in Arkansas, if we didn’t, who would? And we did not see, in this state, that was one of the reasons we wanted to start Natural State Laboratories, as there is not another major independent laboratory that’s not affiliated with hospitals or physician offices that really do the types of testing that we do.


Steve Harrison:


And so, we felt it was pretty much our calling to get out there and get on the forefront of this and work with some of the state offices and state government to make sure that we were here for the citizens of Arkansas, and that really blew up into being the preferred vendor for the Arkansas Department of Health. Through that process, then, we started creating very efficient drive-throughs throughout the state of Arkansas, and that’s really where we felt like we were able to give back in a great way to our state to provide testing in areas of state that were very underutilized with testing supplies.


Steve Harrison:


And then, as a result of that, we’ve been very successful through that approach. We have been able to administer over 500,000 COVID tests in the last six months, and we just feel like that’s been a great way to give back to our state and be able to help us all get through this pandemic. It’s been a very stressful time for everyone.


Robert Wagner:


Right. Yeah. That’s fascinating. I’m glad you pivoted to the COVID part of the discussion, because it’s been a key part in the last for everyone, but for Natural State Labs as well. So, you’ve been written up in news stories and things about the rapid testing and about the quality. What is the secret to, I’m sure there’s more than one thing, but to taking test results down from days, where we started, to hours? Is it process? Is it technology? Is it all of the above? How have you been able to do that?


Steve Harrison:


That is a great question. What we’ve been so excited about and I’m very proud of our team, people are talking about the rapid testing. Well, our testing is truly not a rapid test. It’s the gold standard which is PCR testing which you were hearing about when COVID hit. You were seeing laboratories take four days, five days, and all of a sudden the supplies and reagents became unavailable. Thankfully, through our relationship with Thermo Fisher, we were able to solidify a contract where we had designated inventory for 500,000 test kits, now over a million test kits, that not only do we have the actual swab, which was a problem at first getting ahold of, and then you had, well, the testing kits are available but the problem has been then that there was no enough reagent supply to run the machines from a global sourcing standpoint.


Steve Harrison:


So, we had that problem solidified just through the ability to contract with a great company like Thermo Fisher. Then you had to look at, okay, now we’ve got the test kits and we’ve got the reagents. How do we make our internal processes in our systems incredibly efficient? And that has been, through the use of just bringing a great operations team together, loading up on the staffing, and as a result of that our technology through what Thermo Fisher calls their amplitude solution, it’s a robotic, automated-type process, and that technology has really enabled us to be at the forefront of an innovative laboratory with very efficient processes. We study that on a weekly basis, what our turnaround time is, and once the swab or the kit actually hits our laboratory, our average turnaround time for a full PCR test is about 11.2 hours.


Steve Harrison:


So then, it boils down to, well, how do we get that process on the front end from the testing side to the laboratory? How do we reduce that time frame? So it’s a full logistics discussion, and we’ve created now a logistics division where we have a statewide courier service. We actually utilize aviation for logistics as well to reduce that turnaround time. We’ve been working with one of the major athletic conferences in the US for all their sports programs, all their major sports programs where they had to have a turnaround time the following morning, and they were also looking for the gold standard PCR-type testing. So, through that, we’ve been able to really create amazing efficiency for our turnaround time reporting, and we performed at a incredibly high rate for those athletic programs as well.


Steve Harrison:


So, then, once you have a little success there, word starts getting out and then the different vertical markets from movie productions to all different types of entertainment venues that are looking for ways to enhance their turnaround times as well so they can carry on with their production. So, it’s been a tremendous work in progress, but it truly has been a very qualified team. Casey Honeycutt who’s our chief laboratory officer has done a phenomenal job in putting processes and systems in place to make sure that that efficiency and turnaround time was truly a five-star effort.


Robert Wagner:


I love that story because it’s so much more than the tests, right? Because you’re talking about logistics and time and motion and processes, so that’s fascinating stuff. Just in general, these innovations, whether yours or others, as we’ve gone through COVID, have these been shared freely during COVID? Have they been shared freely in the health care community? Like, this is the way we cut two hours off this or that? Is that information being shared freely?


Steve Harrison:


It is. We’ve been having multiple conversations with state government agencies on really trying to partner with them, because for us, this is all about… We have the name Natural State in the name of our company. It’s Natural State Laboratories, Arkansas is a Natural State. It was created to provide services for the people and the physicians, and take care of the people in Arkansas. But as a result of that, too, people have seen the efficiency of our process in our company, and so expansion has already started outside of Arkansas. We really like it the way it’s kind of branded, because for those people in Arkansas they understand Natural State Laboratories. For those people outside the state of Arkansas, they think it’s a great name because they think it’s the natural state of the molecule.


Robert Wagner:


Okay.


Steve Harrison:


And when you start at look genetics, and so, the name works great for the space that we’re in, inside and outside of the state of Arkansas. But we’ve really made a valiant effort on partnering with some state agencies and some high-end government officials to really make sure that they understand this technology. We had Sarah Huckabee Sanders come into our lab a few weeks ago. She’s running for governor here in the state of Arkansas. She was incredibly impressed, and we just want her to understand what type of innovative type of testing technology that is on hand here in the state of Arkansas, and the great thing about that is that now we are able to expand that footprint more regionally and to move into Georgia and Texas and hopefully in St. Louis, Missouri, later on this year.


Robert Wagner:


Sure. So, you mentioned beefing up the staff, equipment. How did you handle the surge in capital that you needed? So, human capital, financial capital, how did you deal with that?


Steve Harrison:


Actually that was a multi-million dollar question. How are we going to handle this? So we went after some additional funding and we were just very fortunate. I consider it a divine connection how it all transpired, but we were able to find a very solid financial partner that believed in our vision, that understood that how we did business it was going to be done very ethically and it was going to be done with a very sharp focus on making sure that we were doing… Always go do the right thing. And the opportunity that was here for Natural State Laboratories was really a once in a lifetime opportunity, and this was even before COVID hit.


Steve Harrison:


When we started this, we had no idea what that was. So, we had a vision for truly redefining the lab space and attracting the most high-caliber talent. My goal in every meeting is to be the dumbest guy around the table, and that’s worked so far and so I’m going to continue doing exactly the same thing. When our financial partner saw that and saw how we were putting together a very solid business plan to execute on this, that allowed us to open the opportunities for this types of technology that required rather extensive capital. I’ve learned very quickly over the last two-and-a-half years as a start-up, it’s going to be two to three times more than you think, but when you execute the plan and you go through, there’s a lot of mountain and valley experiences.


Steve Harrison:


But, really, the key with our team is, just be consistent. Be consistent, day in, day out. Don’t get too high, don’t get too low, and continue to grind, embrace the grind, and good things will happen when you surround yourselves with great people, a solid infrastructure creating incredible, efficient processes, and you have the capital to allow yourselves to do that. There are going to be times when you fail, but when you fail, learn from it. Don’t do it again, and become better on the other end from that experience.


Robert Wagner:


That’s great. So, you’re really on this topic already, but I just want to see, I guess your insight on, what have you learned about yourself and your leadership during this time?


Steve Harrison:


Well, I tell you, I can talk for an hour to two hours just about that. That’s a very timely question as well. One thing that we realized as we grew so fast, a little over a year ago we had 15 employees. Now we have 160. So, when you go from 15 to 160, there’s significant gaps because at the rate of speed that you’re having to grow and you’re having to scale, you also are having to put measures in place for getting all of your other lines of testing services integrated into these practices, in these nursing homes, when COVID is going on, and the last thing on anyone else’s mind is doing any other types of testing other than COVID.


Steve Harrison:


So, what I learned about myself through that was that this company was growing and when you look at the rate in which it was growing I knew that I needed some expert advice to come in and truly assist us. So we brought in a corporate coach, Tim Jackson, who has been an unbelievable asset to us, and in two months we were able to truly redefine major roles in our company that our company needed. I think the thing that I have learned so much about this is, one, it was up to me to buy into the process at the very beginning, and from a leadership standpoint our team bought in. But I think the thing that was so evident to me was the way Tim really helped mold me even further more into a leader and understanding my blind spots, the blind spots that you’re not aware of. When someone asked you what your blind spots are, who knows?


Robert Wagner:


Right.


Steve Harrison:


So you’re told. So I have been through all of that. It’s been a great area of development for me as a leader of this company, to understand areas that I really need to be aware of, and [inaudible 00:28:57] to really inspire not only our team but to be a great listener and to make sure that as a team we are moving in the right direction, and you’ve got buy-in from the team that you’re on. And so, it’s been a great learning experience for me through that.


Robert Wagner:


Awesome. Okay, so I want to back up a little bit here and just talk about maybe the early part of your career. You had a very successful career in sales. You did, I think, some pharma sales, you were in insurance for a bit in some sales leadership positions. When did you figure out you had a talent for sales?


Steve Harrison:


Well, I got my master’s in health care administration, and my father and my grandfather really inspired me to go into the arena of health care administration. They both have been on the boards of large hospital systems, and during my time at Baylor University, in my undergrad, I had roommates whose fathers were CEOs of hospitals and it really allowed me, from a networking standpoint, to learn from some of those gentlemen to do some shadowing while I was in undergrad. And that was really the career I wanted to focus on. So I did my administrative residency and fellowship at Baptist Health Systems here in Little Rock.


Steve Harrison:


And after about three or four years of that, I just realized that I just had more of a desire, I had more of an entrepreneurial spirit about me, so I really tried to focus on some type of medical sales and enjoyed that for many, many years. But I’ve also had, from that entrepreneurial spirit focus, I’ve also had a major desire to create a company and to lead a company that was going to make a difference in the health care space. That was a very long, what I would almost call, desert experience. It was spending seven to 10 years really understanding where my strengths were, how I needed to, if I was going to ever make this happen, finding people to work with in certain areas that were not my strong points.


Steve Harrison:


And so, that was a seven to 10 year journey that finally came to fruition at the end of 2018. So, while this has been a great success story, people only see the success that you’re going through, they don’t see the grind and the years of kind of doubt and feelings of inadequacy that you’re going through during that process of getting that developed. I think that has been the one thing that I’m so thankful for, is that those seven to 10 years of really trying to understand what the end point was going to be, that was the growth experience for me to be able to prepare me for where we are now as a company.


Robert Wagner:


Thank you so much. I appreciate that transparency and the reality of your… No one’s an overnight success, right? It’s just this-


Steve Harrison:


Right.


Robert Wagner:


… [inaudible 00:32:55] of lots and lots of experiences over time.


Steve Harrison:


And when you are successful, it’s a continuous process. I mean, you’re continuing every day. Our team continues every day to not look at the success side of it, but look at how we continue to improve every single day, truly to be the best that we can be. And that is never settling. When you have successful outcomes, don’t get complacent. Always continue to strive to be better, and that’s kind of our mantra here, is that our core values here at Natural State Laboratories is, learn fast. We’ve got to learn fast. These are all verbs that, we learn fast, we work hard, we do right, and we give back.


Steve Harrison:


So we know that if we learn fast and we do the first three, we learn fast, work hard, and do right, always do the right thing. You do those three things, then it puts you in a position to where you can truly give back and make a difference, and that’s what we’ve been doing here over the last couple of years, and we’re going to continue to do that as long as Natural State Laboratories is an operation.


Robert Wagner:


Yeah. I want to key off that learn fast thing, because I think, I guess I’m hoping, as a business culture in the United States, maybe global, I’m not sure that… Things have changed really fast and some of them we’ve made happen because we had to, and we’ve shortened cycles. And I’m just hoping that’s something that we can continue to learn from. So, I’m trying to analogize it your business, like you call a vendor and you need this new multi-million dollar machine, and I’m guessing that the normal timeline for implementation is months and months and months, and you shortened to a few weeks, maybe, I’m guessing. Have you experienced things like that? And how do you think you keep going?


Steve Harrison:


Absolutely. Well, what’s interesting is, when you look at the generation of young people now, everything is around technology. This generation coming up, they get a bad rap about certain things in terms of work ethic, in terms of not wanting to be in the office, but at the same time they have done phenomenal things in regards to creating speed, innovative technology, and they learn so fast. Their ability to adapt and learn quickly also challenges people like myself who is in their early 50s to… Our organization, just in terms of how this vertical space is continuing to just rapidly explode. If you can’t learn fast, it’s going to outpace you quickly. So, our culture that we are trying to create here is, we want people when they come onboard here, that they have the desire and they have the ability to learn fast.


Steve Harrison:


And it’s one thing to learn, it’s another thing to work hard. And that doesn’t mean just long hours. That means working efficiently, being creative, having the autonomy and the character to not have someone micromanage you, to be able to be dependable and that we trust them, they trust us, and so it’s all about we. There’s no I, it’s all about we. So when you learn fast and you work hard and you’re going to do right in terms of when you’re talking to clients, you’re always going to focus on underpromising and overdelivering on the time frames. Making sure that they’re accessible. Making sure that everything that we do is completely compliant. That we never step out of bounds on that.


Steve Harrison:


And then, that is what really, through all of that process, you’re creating great systems and efficiencies which then allow you to really become what our clients and our customers truly see us as a value-add and a solutions provider to them. And when you do that, you’re going to be successful. But it’s a culture mindset that you really have to instill, and as a leader, you’ve got to be the one to set the pace for that.


Robert Wagner:


Right. That’s great stuff. Great stuff. I see we’re near the end of our time here, and I just want to thank you for this great discussion. But we do have five questions that we ask every guest. So, are you ready?


Steve Harrison:


Sure. Yeah.


Robert Wagner:


So, what was the first way you made money?


Steve Harrison:


First way I made money was… In 1993 I realized I was pretty good at sales, and in my part-time, at night, after my day job, I actually sold long distance services to people. And that’s when I realized, “You know what? This sales thing might work for me.”


Robert Wagner:


Yeah.


Steve Harrison:


And that was when we had long distance. And that was before cell phones.


Robert Wagner:


Right. Yeah, that’s a tough sale. That’s good.


Steve Harrison:


It is. Yeah.


Robert Wagner:


So, if you were not the CEO of Natural State Labs, what do you think you would be doing?


Steve Harrison:


Oh, wow. You know, I’ve never even thought about that. My dream job was to be a sports agent. I’m fascinated with sports. I majored in broadcasting at Baylor University in business. And so, I either wanted to be in sports broadcasting or be a sports agent. So if I had not pursued the health care arena, those are probably the… I’d either be in broadcasting or doing something related to sports.


Robert Wagner:


Wow. That’s great. There’s still a shot for you, I think. All right, so, what would you tell your 20-year-old self?


Steve Harrison:


I would tell my 20-year-old self the same thing I tell all the 20-plus-year-olds that work here at Natural State Laboratories. Be patient. Be patient and pursue whatever you’re passionate about. And that is the one thing that I tell my children. I have a 25-year-old son who actually works here, who’s getting his MBA right now at online at SMU. And I’ve got a 16-year-old son and a 13-year-old daughter, and I tell all of them, “Find something you want to really pursue with passion, and don’t ever give up on that, and continue. Don’t let anyone talk you out of it.”


Robert Wagner:


Yeah. Good stuff. All right, question four. What will the title of your book be?


Steve Harrison:


There will be a book, I will promise you, because it’s been an amazing journey, and we talk about that a lot. It will have something to do with faith and trials. But I don’t know the name of that book yet.


Robert Wagner:


Okay. That’s great. You’re the first person who said there will be a book. That’s good. Most people say they [crosstalk 00:41:24]

Steve Harrison:


Yeah, there will be.


Robert Wagner:


Most people say there will not be a book. But, that’s-


Steve Harrison:


And the reason there will be is because I really want people to understand, especially people like myself who have a desire to create a company and lead a company, and they just feel like there’s no way. There’s always a way, but I also want those people to have faith that they can do it, but understand that there’s going to be significant trials along the way, but you will, and you can achieve what your heart has a desire to do.


Robert Wagner:


Mm-hmm (affirmative). That’s great. All right, last question. What is the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given?


Steve Harrison:


To love well, because at the end of the day, people want to be, or are attracted to people that love well. I fail on that pretty much every day, but that’s really the best advice. I’m amazed by people that love well and that are encouraging, and I strive to do that on a daily basis, because it doesn’t matter how smart you are in business, if people aren’t attracted to you and if they’re not encouraged being around you, and there’s not a positive experience in interacting with you, you’re never going to get very far in life.


Robert Wagner:


Oh, that’s good stuff. That’s a great place to end. So, learn fast, love well. I love it.


Steve Harrison:


Yeah.


Robert Wagner:


All right. Steve, it’s been fantastic having you with us. If folks want to learn more about Natural State Labs, where do they go?


Steve Harrison:


NaturalStateLaboratories.com is our website, and if they ever have any questions about the services that we do, they can feel free to email me at sharrison@naturalstatelab.com.


Robert Wagner:


Awesome. All right, thank you so much, Steve. Appreciate it.


Steve Harrison:


Thank you. Pleasure being with you.


Robert Wagner:


Thank you.


Steve Harrison:


Take care.


Robert Wagner:


That’s all for this episode of How That Happened. Thank you for listening. Be sure to visit howthathappened.com for show notes and additional episodes. You can also subscribe to our show on iTunes, Spotify, Google Podcast or Stitcher. Thanks for listening. This content is for informational purposes only and does not constitute professional advice. Copyright 2021, HoganTaylor LLP. All right reserved. To review the HoganTaylor general terms and conditions, visit www.hogantaylor.com.


 


Steve Harrison is the CEO of Natural State Laboratories, which was founded in 2018 to be a state-of-the-art molecular genetics and toxicology reference laboratory serving the needs of physicians and patients in Arkansas and throughout the United States.

Having been in the laboratory space in and around Arkansas for the past several years, Steve came to realize throughout his journey that the customer service element was severely lacking in the industry as a whole.

Because of this, the focus and purpose of both Steve and his business partner Jeff Weeks was “to redefine the lab industry and, by doing so, we wanted to make sure that there was a true obsession with our clients and customers.”

In this episode, Steve shares where he acquired his passion for entrepreneurship, how Natural State Labs was able to become the preferred vendor of the Arkansas Department of Health for distributing COVID tests, the key factors in reducing COVID testing times from days down to hours, and what he learned about leadership in the past couple of years.

This episode is now on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, or wherever you listen to podcasts. You can also listen via the podcast player embedded above.

Make sure to subscribe to “How That Happened” to receive our latest episodes, learn more about our guests, and collect resources on how to better run your business.