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  • Writer's pictureAri Mostov

An Ode to Innovation

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From the glitz of Hollywood to the heart of healthcare innovation, my journey was anything but conventional. I never anticipated venturing into the world of innovation. Frankly, the term “innovation” seemed like a cliché, overused and devoid of substance. As a Hollywood producer, my focus was on storytelling, not tech jargon aimed at impressing Wall Street. Yet, fate had other plans for me.


Enter innovation leader, Jennifer Kenny. Under her guidance, my perception shifted. Innovation wasn’t just a buzzword; it was a catalyst for change, offering boundless opportunities for problem-solving and growth. As a millennial grappling with the chaos of our polycrisis world, innovation provided a glimmer of hope and empowerment — a chance to rewrite the narrative of despair into one of possibility.


My journey began in the world of entertainment, producing social impact films like The Hunting Ground. This documentary not only earned accolades (including an Oscar nomination) but ignited a movement, challenging societal norms and policies surrounding sexual violence. It was here that I witnessed the power of storytelling to effect change, sparking a realization that narratives could drive innovation beyond the screen.


A woman at the Oscar's Red Carpet
Ari at the 2016 Oscars

Inspired by this revelation, I embarked on a new chapter: healthcare innovation. Armed with little more than my storytelling instincts, I launched a healthcare startup, driven by a simple question: “What if Disney did healthcare?” Then, the pandemic struck, turning the world on its head. In the chaos, my background proved unexpectedly valuable as I found myself advising healthcare companies, leveraging narrative-driven innovation to navigate uncharted waters.


What became evident was the untapped potential of narrative in healthcare. User-generated content was reshaping the landscape, centering individuals as they shared their own health journeys. From TikTok CPAP reviews to YouTube colostomy fashion, a new narrative of self-enabled healthcare was emerging. Yet healthcare leaders struggled to harness this narrative, craving guidance in making sense of the innovation frenzy.


Here, I found my calling. Collaborating with healthcare leaders, I crafted narratives that not only inspired but guided innovation at every level of their organizations. These narratives became the compass, steering them towards meaningful change and industry-shaping innovations.


Innovation isn’t just about products or technologies; it’s about storytelling — the power to inspire, unite, and drive change. My journey from skeptic to advocate taught me that innovation is within reach for anyone with a story to tell and a vision to share. So, I invite you to join me in rewriting the narrative of innovation, one story at a time.


Ari Mostov is a healthcare narrative strategist. She is committed to transforming imagination into reality and using innovation to scale healing. Learn more at www.wellplay.world

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