Adapting to Change: WeWork's Board Reshuffle and the Future of US Retail Pharmacies

Ben H.

Hatched by Ben H.

Aug 22, 2023

3 min read


Adapting to Change: WeWork's Board Reshuffle and the Future of US Retail Pharmacies


In the ever-changing landscape of business, companies must be prepared to adapt to shifting consumer preferences and market conditions. This article explores two distinct industries, focusing on the recent board reshuffle at WeWork and the evolving US retail pharmacy sector. Despite their differences, both cases highlight the importance of understanding and meeting changing consumer needs.

WeWork's Board Reshuffle:

WeWork, once valued at an impressive $47 billion, has experienced a stunning downfall, with its shares plummeting by 99% since its IPO. This drastic decline prompted the resignation of three directors who expressed disagreement with the company's governance and strategic direction. To fill the void, WeWork appointed four new independent directors with expertise in corporate bankruptcies. This move reflects WeWork's uncertainty about its ability to navigate the challenges faced by the office-building market.

The Changing Landscape of US Retail Pharmacies:

The US retail pharmacy industry is grappling with various challenges, including saturated retail locations, labor shortages, inflationary pressure, and stagnant generic drug penetration. To remain competitive, all types of retail pharmacies must understand and adapt to evolving consumer preferences. McKinsey conducted a consumer survey to gain insight into these preferences and identified four types of retail pharmacies: retail chains, regional pharmacies, independent pharmacies, and mail-order and online pharmacies.

Retail Chains: The Dominant Players:

Retail chains represent the largest and most prevalent type of retail pharmacy, accounting for a third of stores and prescription revenues. These chains dispense a significant number of prescriptions annually, highlighting their influence and reach in the market. However, they face the challenge of increasing competition from other pharmacy types.

Regional Pharmacies: A Growing Segment:

Regional pharmacies, encompassing mass retail and grocers, are the second-largest prescription dispensers per retail location. While they may not have the scale of retail chains, they still play a crucial role in meeting consumer needs. These pharmacies must find innovative ways to differentiate themselves and attract customers in a competitive landscape.

Independent Pharmacies: Niche Opportunities:

Independent pharmacies offer a unique value proposition, often focusing on personalized service and community connections. Despite facing challenges from larger competitors, they can thrive by leveraging their local presence and building strong relationships with customers. This segment is a testament to the enduring appeal of personalized care in the pharmacy industry.

Mail-Order and Online Pharmacies: Disrupting the Market:

Mail-order and online pharmacies have historically had low overall penetration compared to specialty pharmacies. However, they are gaining traction due to their convenience and speed. To further disrupt the market, online pharmacies can focus on strategies that reinforce their natural benefits while bridging potential gaps in the consumer experience. Personalized experiences, such as video telehealth visits with remote pharmacists, can help establish a personal connection in the absence of face-to-face consultations.

Actionable Advice:

  • 1. Embrace Change: Companies must be willing to adapt to changing market conditions and consumer preferences. This may involve reshuffling boards, as seen with WeWork, or exploring new technologies and business models, as seen in the retail pharmacy industry.
  • 2. Prioritize Personalization: In an increasingly competitive landscape, retail pharmacies can differentiate themselves by offering personalized experiences and building strong customer relationships. Independent pharmacies can take advantage of their local presence, while online pharmacies can leverage technology to create meaningful connections with consumers.
  • 3. Embrace Digital Transformation: The rise of online pharmacies highlights the importance of embracing digital transformation. Companies should invest in technologies that enhance convenience and accessibility while maintaining a human touch. This can include telehealth options, streamlined ordering processes, and seamless integration between online and in-person experiences.


The stories of WeWork's board reshuffle and the US retail pharmacy industry demonstrate the need for companies to remain agile and responsive to changing consumer needs. By embracing change, prioritizing personalization, and embracing digital transformation, businesses can position themselves for success in today's dynamic market. Whether it's the office-building sector or the healthcare industry, the ability to adapt and meet consumer preferences will be crucial for long-term sustainability.

Hatch New Ideas with Glasp AI 🐣

Glasp AI allows you to hatch new ideas based on your curated content. Let's curate and create with Glasp AI :)