Meet Frank Martinez: Canary Health’s Director of Operations
I meet Frank for lunch in Studio City. We’ve shared countless meals, but this is the first with the explicit agenda for me to interview him and hear his story. And if you’ll allow this narrator some foreshadowing – it was a great conversation and helped me gain a deeper understanding of, and respect for Frank.
He jumps right in. “I reflected on the questions you sent me in preparation. And I want you to know how much I personally get out of supporting our participants on their health journeys. I fear I may not be able to express all that, or tell the best stories, but I need you, and everyone who is going to read this interview, to know that I feel more able, more confident on my own health journey, because I get to share theirs.”
Frank has been at Canary Health since before it was Canary Health, coming from one of the legacy companies merged in 2015. He is the company’s Director of Operations and it is pretty safe to say the place runs smoothly in large part to him and his team’s efforts. And yet, his clear humility shines through, as it does with his apologetic introduction for our interview.
“I get my own feedback loop through observing our programs and supporting the participants,” says Frank. “In solving issues or helping keep participants motivated, I look into where they are in the program, what they’re doing, and it feeds my journey; it reinforces that things are not always easy or obvious, but that we can improve. In a way we’re on the journey with them. And it’s not just me, but I find I can support my friends and family better.”
“How so?” I ask.
Lunch has come and Frank continues talking. “For example, my mom is someone who seems to be into fads – recently it’s been the Onion Soup Diet. Do you know that one?” I shake my head. Frank continues, “And I am able to help her see that committing to things she can achieve, things she’s confident in, are more important than any particular diet approach.” He laughs, “Well I am not quite there with her but making progress.”
We spend a good amount of time talking about self-efficacy at Canary Health and I smile hearing Frank incorporate the concept into his support of his mom. A clear tenet of all the research around peer support is the power of not only receiving, but giving support as these snippets of Frank’s story illustrate.