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Vikram’s speech description:
“The future doesn’t have to surprise you.” So says Vikram Mansharamani, global trend-watcher, Harvard Lecturer, author, and investor. Mansharamani shows audiences how to look differently at their industry and business with the goal of helping them spot risk and capture opportunities others miss. The overwhelming flood of political, economic, technological, social, and market forces that bombard us every day is distracting. It prevents us from paying attention to what really matters. Our usual response to the noise is to focus narrowly or turn to specialists for help. But is that the right path? Have we been blinded by focus? Has the mantra of expertise and specialization misled us? Vikram thinks the pendulum has swung too far. He offers scores of compelling real-life examples that show how a narrow lens can lead us to miss the most important signals – the ones we’re least primed to see. The advice he offers is counter-intuitive. He advocates opening up to get a broader view; to zoom out. He calls the logic the generalist’s approach. Breadth, Vikram argues, is as important as depth. Generalists win by paying attention to more than their area of expertise. Vikram's generalist framework for looking at the world differently is at the center of what he delivers in his speeches and can be focused on just about any subject. A few examples:
Why Book Vikram Mansharamani?
Vikram Mansharamani first gained widespread attention with his book Boombustology: Spotting Financial Bubbles Before They Burst. Since then he’s gone on to show business leaders and investors how to look at the world differently in order to manage risk and navigate radical uncertainty. His strategies help them peer into the future on crucial areas like China, food, the global economy, Africa, housing, investing, financial cycles, energy, and much more. So valuable are his insights that LinkedIn named Vikram #1 on their 10 Top Voices in Money & Finance for 2015 and 2016.
Vikram believes that the future doesn’t have to surprise us – and won’t – if we regularly step away from our expertise and look at the world through multiple lenses. He calls this the generalist’s mindset. When encountering information that seems irrelevant most people think, “So what?!” Generalists think instead, “Isn’t that interesting,” and look to connect disparate dots. When they do, the conclusions they draw and decisions they make may be very different from the more narrow-focused “experts.” Vikram shows audiences practical ways to use this approach to spot opportunities and reduce risk.
Vikram is Lecturer at Yale University where he taught three popular classes: “Investment Management”, “Financial Booms and Busts” and “Adventures in Business Ethics.” He is also Lecturer at Harvard’s John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences where he is co-teaching a course called "Humanity and Its Challenges." His current research interests include bubbles in both financial and non-financial markets, the unsustainable dynamics of food and fuel, and the relative value of experts vs. generalists in navigating complex uncertainties and risk.
Vikram Mansharamani is a global equity investor with more than 20 years’ experience investing in public and private markets. He served as Managing Director of SDK Capital (and its predecessors).
Vikram is currently regular contributor to Worth magazine and a columnist for the PBS NewsHour. He has also contributed to Bloomberg, MarketWatch, CNBC, Forbes, Fortune, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Atlantic, Yale Global, The South China Morning Post, The Korea Times, The Khaleej Times, and The Daily Beast, among others. Vikram contributed the summary chapter for the book A Force for Good (2015) synthesizing lessons drawn from the collection of essays written by the world's most prominent thinkers on the role of finance and capitalism in today's increasingly interconnected and unequal world.
Vikram Mansharamani is a frequently sought-after speaker by a wide range of organizations. And while corporations from virtually every industry have sought his insights, he continues to have a very strong following in the investment community. He regularly speaks with those focused on allocating large pools of capital. Audiences of sovereign wealth funds, family offices, endowments, foundations, and registered investment advisors have found tremendous value in his unconventional thinking.
As a consultant Vikram helps clients analyze the business impact of global trends, with a particular emphasis on economic, political, and social risks that might generate instability. He conducts many executive education seminars for senior leadership teams on how to integrate disparate (and seemingly contradictory) information into actionable analysis to drive business decisions. His thematic analysis and risk management is always focused on identifying opportunities within the risks. He currently serves on the board of the Africa Opportunity Fund (LSE: AOF), is a strategic advisor to Peter Kiewit & Sons, and regularly helps the National Bank of Abu Dhabi.
He previously served on the boards of the Association of Yale Alumni, the U.S.-Pakistan Business Council, Interelate, and ManagedOps. He earned a Ph.D. and MS from the Sloan School of Management at MIT, an MS in Political Science from MIT, and a BA from Yale University, where he was elected to Phi Beta Kappa.