Life at Deloitte
Following in his father’s footsteps
“I consider myself pretty lucky because I got placed on my third day at Deloitte and I haven’t hit the beach since.” — Ryan O’Quinn, Senior Consultant, Strategy & Operations, Deloitte Consulting LLP
“My father was raised in a small town in Arkansas that is reminiscent of the hometown of Ray Charles–if you have seen that movie. It was a very poor southern area, almost like a watering hole town. When his aunt passed, he was forced to move to Watts, California, which at the time was a hardened inner city. Still, he managed to get out of that environment. He went to UCLA, got his Masters of Healthcare Administration at the University of Washington, and now he is a health care executive who has visited the White House and traveled to the Vatican as a part of his work at a major Catholic health care system. I guess when I think back, what has shaped me the most was watching his career develop. I have been to a couple of his events where he has been a keynote speaker. Watching him command an audience, talk about his experiences and speak as an expert, it has affected me. He is my idol.”
Passion for health care
As a performance improvement consultant specializing in health care, Ryan comes by his work honestly. His father is COO for a large health care system in California. His mother was a nurse. “I thought I wanted to go to medical school, so I majored in neuroscience.” He quickly realized that being a doctor wasn’t right for him, but the industry was. He added an economics major, and ultimately received his Masters of Healthcare Administration from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
At UNC, a meeting with a Deloitte Partner steered Ryan toward consulting rather than client-side work. He was intrigued by the diversity. “Every day is a new day, a new problem.” He chose Deloitte, for two reasons. His father spoke highly of the organization, having done a project with Deloitte while working at a hospital in Florida. And because Deloitte has breadth. “Deloitte does pretty much everything,” says Ryan. He adds that not only does Deloitte touch nearly every aspect of health care; teams see projects through from strategy to implementation. “It is something that a lot of firms can’t offer.”
As a senior consultant, Ryan splits time between two major projects. The first is “quarterbacking” a business plan for a new medical school being proposed at a major midwestern university. The second is a project aimed at reducing costs in a large, private medical system. “We look at every single service to identify opportunities to reduce costs” — from laundry to radiology, from nursing to revenue collection practices. His team has identified about $100 million in costs that could be cut annually. Projects like these are particularly interesting in light of the Affordable Care Act. In Ryan’s opinion, this kind of recalibration in health care is vital not only for cost control, but improved care. “Everyone is getting in line to be one of the health systems of the future.”
Ryan is also committed to recruiting and mentoring. He tells a recent story of going out after work with his team and his client/former colleague at UNC. A new business analyst on his team, who Ryan had also helped supervise as an intern, went up to the client and said “I just wanted to tell you that (Ryan) is the reason I joined Deloitte.” The business analyst went on to talk about Ryan’s management style and how he’d been a good mentor. “That made me blush a little. I didn't realize I had such an impact on him.”
Ryan seeks diversity outside the office, too. He recently mentored on a business plan project for local high school students. He sky dives, reads historical war fiction and is learning Spanish (“It’s taking longer than I anticipated.”). Ryan has been to 12 Lakers games and says Kobe Bryant is his all-time favorite Laker. Recently, he’s also taken to playing golf with his father.