The World Health Organization (WHO) is the leading health organization in the world. And like most of these organizations it consists of lots of wasted money and accomplishing very little. The WHO, and the UN as a whole, has been criticized for failing to do enough, especially when it comes to things like the Zika virus, where 4,100 babies have been born in Brazil with the condition.

But a solution for the WHO to get its house in order is to run itself more like a startup. If it can run more like a startup, there's no reason why it can't become a resounding success in the coming years.

So why should the WHO run more like a startup?

Stop Wasting Money

One of the biggest problems that departments like the WHO have is that they are constantly wasting money. This tends to be wasted on pointless initiatives and in the administration department. Startups don't run like this because they can't afford to run like this.

If the WHO wants to stop wasting money, it has to adopt the same approach. It has to think about how it's spending its money and how it can avoid spending too much money.

This will do much to deflate the huge budget that the WHO has accumulated.

A Passion to Change the World

Many have questioned whether the WHO is still passionate about its original purpose. It used to be a place where the great healers of the world would gather. Today, it's embroiled in the politics of the world and the politics that are happening within itself. There are too many people that aren't serious about the mission of the organization. They are just there for a pay check.

This isn't the case with the average startup because they know that they cannot afford to have anyone onboard who isn't passionate about what the company is doing.

A Client First Approach

The WHO doesn't have clients as such. They have people who need their help across the world. Corporations have clients, but corporations rarely put their clients first. There are other considerations, such as shareholders, upper management, and a whole host of other figures and bodies.

The client first approach is something that startups embrace because they have no other choice. There are just a few people within the company and their only choice is to put their clients first. The WHO needs to return to this thinking. They need to forget about shareholders, investors, and politics.

This client first approach will ensure that they are caring about those who matter most, and that will pay dividends in the long-term.

Getting Rid of the Internal Politics

Within the WHO, there are many people with interests in the direction of the organization. For example, asbestos companies still deal with the WHO, despite the fact asbestos is banned in most modern countries. This is something that corporations fall victim to. They have too many people with something to gain, aside from the main mission of the company.

So why is office politics different with startups?

Startups are very much run by dictatorships. There are only one or two people at the top of the tree, and they are passionate about what they are doing. This doesn't mean that the WHO has to become a company that runs like a dictatorship, but it needs to limit the number of interested parties in order to make sure everyone is behind the WHO's primary goal.

Can the WHO Really Do This?

The WHO will never become a startup because it's far too big for that. But it can adopt the mindset of a successful startup. It can take on some of the characteristics of successful startups by going out of its way to initiate change within the organization.

This is not a department of the UN that is in crisis mode. But it can do better. There are many valid criticisms, such as its slow response times and its inability to gather together the money it needs to actually carry out its campaigns.

If it can make some major changes, the chances are it will be able to help thousands of more people.

Last Word--How Running Like a Startup Benefits Everyone

The truth is that this is a trend among all corporations. They have discovered that by running like a startup they can consolidate what they have and tighten up their operations. By becoming tighter in this way, they can ensure that they can become more successful, while using their superior resources.

Published on: May 26, 2016
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