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Since publishing his first book, WOW Moments! Turning Everyday Experiences into Extraordinary Events in October of last year, Mark Kent has undergone a lot of WOW! moments of his own. To date, the book, which focuses on creating engaged customers and an engaged workforce, has sold more than 120,000 copies, and resulted in Kent becoming an in-demand speaker.

“I think the topic really resonates with a lot of people, primarily consumers and people in business,” he explained. “At the different seminars and speaking engagements that I’ve led, people are always talking about how we need to get back to the basics, and to put forward relationships as the solution to a lot of business problems.
 
“You’ll never grow or increase revenue until you focus on the consumer and meet or exceed their expectations,” he added. “You’ve got to focus on the relationship. One thing that social media has shown us is that people want to connect – they want to learn more about your company, your employees, your vision and mission – what you stand for.”
 
Kent has been sharing this message with numerous professional and business groups, ranging from Toyota, which was looking to better connect with customers, to a consortium of college and university leaders who wanted input on how to structure programs to better prepare students for the future job market. “It used to be that companies believed in no margin, no mission – if they didn’t make money, they wouldn’t go far. But today it’s the reverse; no mission, no margin,” explained Kent. “Consumers want to connect with you and understand your vision; and if you don’t have a true mission as an organization, you won’t see a margin. And as perennials bounce from job to job, they want to be part of an organization that provides added value.”
 
Kent recently underwent his own career change, leaving his role as the regional president of all Humana-owned, Florida-based primary care practices to become the CEO of Women’s Health Care in Evansville, Indiana. “I’m absolutely loving it; it’s phenomenal,” he said of his new job that allows him more interaction with patients. “I really appreciate the greater flexibility that this job allows me, and the fact that I get to deal with patients nearly every day.
 
“I’m really an entrepreneur at heart,” added Kent, who started and sold two companies before he joined Humana. “My current role allows me to expand the number of medical groups I own, and over the next 18 months, I’ll be looking at opportunities again in South Florida. It’s a prime market for my patient-focused, consumer-driven operating model of health care.”
 
Kent remains committed to the Florida area, especially to its children through the Foster Children’s United Society which he founded. “This May, we will graduate our 20th foster child with full tuition scholarships, and I am so proud of these students who are all going on to remarkable futures, and who I know will make a difference in their communities,” he said. “These are kids who have worked really hard and just needed a helping hand; I was blessed to be raised in a loving home, and I just can’t imagine a world in which a child has no one, but is expected to succeed in some way.”
 
As for Kent’s future, it looks like it will be full of many more WOW moments. “My great-grandmother used to say, “’Every day, the sun rises and sets and you have the opportunity to move the ball forward for yourself, your family or your community during that time. If you don’t do that, you’ve wasted a day,’” he explained. “As a young kid, I found that very powerful, and still believe that every day, I have the opportunity to do something awesome.”