SPEAKING OF THE FUTURE — CONNECTING THE DOTS
What’s the future hold – for the economy, investing, geopolitics, health care, emerging markets and food? So much is changing so rapidly – on a global scale – that it’s hard to know what’s relevant. Keeping ahead of what’s coming next starts with paying attention to the right signals and connecting the dots. The future doesn’t have to blindside you. Vikram Mansharamani helps audiences see a new way to uncover valuable insights on the drivers of change impacting business.
MANAGING RISK – THE GENERALIST ADVANTAGE
Mansharami calls up scores of examples that convincingly demonstrate that experts appear less able to navigate uncertainty in their area of expertise than non-experts. Indeed, expertise appears to be over-valued. In complex times it’s important to step outside one’s expertise and pay attention to the periphery – even the fringe. A broad focus – not a narrow one – is the best strategy for managing risk and navigating change. Mansharamani helps audiences see the world differently and think like a generalist.
Why are we surprised when unsustainable situations blow up? Why didn’t we see it coming? Vikram Mansharamani’s book, Boombustology, Spotting Financial Bubbles Before They Burst, gained wide acclaim and introduced his unique formula for spotting unsustainable scenarios – bubbles – and take action before it’s too late. A maverick mind and a contrarian by nature, Mansharamani outlined the principles he used to achieve success during two decades as a global equity investor.
ACADEMIC RIGOR – THE HARVARD, YALE AND MIT CONNECTION
Introduced in 2009, Mansharamani’s course at Yale, Financial Booms and Busts, has become one of the most popular on campus. In 2011 he was named the first resident scholar of Tiger21, the peer-to-peer learning group for high net-worth individuals. In 2013, the Harvard Kennedy School of Government appointed him Senior Fellow, Mossavar-Rahmani Center for Business and Government Mansharamani earned a PhD and MS from the Sloan School of Management at MIT, an MS in Political Science from MIT and a BA from Yale University.
GROUNDED IN REALITY
Mansharamani serves as advisor to numerous family offices, sovereign wealth funds, endowments and foundations – providing independent asset allocation strategy and guidance. He’s also been a frequent guest analyst, commentator and quoted expert in the financial media including Bloomberg, MarketWatch, CNBC, Forbes, Fortune, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, PBS NewsHour, The Atlantic, Yale Global, The South China Morning Post, The Korea Times, The Khaleej Times, and The Daily Beast, among others.
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THE GENERALIST ADVANTAGE: GOING BEYOND EXPERTISE
We live in a culture that places high value on deep expertise and specialized skills. But can expertise blind you into tunnel vision and single-mindedness? Vikram Mansharamani has scores of examples that shows it can. In a fast-paced world driven by complex and diverse factors, connecting the dots is often more important than developing the dots. Building on insights from the research he is conducting at Harvard, Mansharamani shows why generalists are better-suited to navigating uncertainty than specialists; he opens the minds in the audience with real tools to help people think beyond their area of expertise. Entertaining and empowering, with examples drawn from finance, politics, agriculture, medicine, and education, Mansharamani helps people manage risk and anticipate the future with intriguing specifics to convince the audience of the value of the generalist approach.
GLOBAL CONSUMPTION BOOM – WHY EVERYTHING IS ABOUT TO CHANGE
As the middle-class booms in emerging nations, a global consumption boom is likely to have an unprecedented impact on a wide range of commodities – food, fuel, precious metals – that will impact the global standard of living. The result will be geopolitical and economic uncertainty. Vikram Mansharamani untangles these dynamics through easy-to-understand, entertaining, and engaging analysis that evaluates the effect of a ballooning middle-class on an unlikely collection of industries — from education and entertainment to defense, finance and healthcare. Mansharamani’s insights help audiences look differently at the nature of global prosperity and how it may shape their business and their future.
THE GLOBAL ECONOMY – AN UNCONVENTIONAL LOOK
Europe falling apart? China collapsing? Treasury bubble popping? Japan economic implosion? Social networking bubble? Alternative energy dynamics creating geopolitical unrest? Vikram Mansharamani applies his experience as a practitioner and an academic to help audiences navigate the seemingly unending cross-currents of global economic, financial and political developments. While audiences often find themselves agreeing with Mansharamani each step of the way, they’re frequently surprised by what turn out to be unconventional conclusions. He customizes the content of his talk to the audience using information that’s fresh and relevant.
THE END OF CHEAP FOOD – A GLOBAL FORECAST
Food is emerging as one of the future’s most volatile assets. Shifting political, economic, climatic and societal change all factor into the equation. Vikram Mansharamani applies his multi-lens bubble-spotting approach to the key drivers of food prices in a global marketplace. He suggests that the era of cheap food is over and describes the geo-political and geo-economic ramifications of such developments – from Wall Street to Pudong. Audiences leave understanding the dynamics of land grabs, water scarcity, and the implications of food (in)security for national defense as well appreciating how food-price dynamics will affect their industry – however remote from the food industry it may be.
SPOTTING BUBBLES BEFORE THEY BURST
In a globally dynamic environment, boom and bust cycles occur more frequently than in the past. It seems there’s always something that has reached unsustainable levels. The trick, of course, is recognizing it and taking action before the bubble bursts. In direct contrast to the views espoused by most academics, Vikram Mansharamani makes a persuasive case that it is possible to identify financial (and other) bubbles before they burst. He draws on entertaining and engaging examples from art markets, architecture, and popular culture – as well as economics and politics – to powerfully demonstrate that you do not need to be an expert to effectively anticipate the future. Audiences walk away empowered to think independently and to connect obvious dots to generate not-so-obvious conclusions.
“Dr. Mansharamani is a talented speaker who connects with his audience. He is able to distill broad themes into relatable bites through illustrative and effective storytelling and use of visual images. He invites the audience to engage directly with him and they do! He is adept at and seems to enjoy responding to questions and challenges to his point of view. Dr. Mansharamani was among the best speakers we’ve had in our Author Series – evidence: the long line of people who sought to meet him and ask more questions following his presentation.”
– Suzannah L. Susser, Deputy Director, Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation
“Rare is the speaker that offers a perspective culled from a variety of disciplines. Seeking such a person, we booked Vikram to speak to our group, which is comprised of CFA charter holders with a wealth of experience in financial markets. He was someone we thought would inspire outside-the-box thinking, and he delivered in spades. Vikram offered a broad, macro-level presentation that exposed our audience to potential opportunities and threats facing the world. He’s an incredibly knowledgeable, dynamic speaker whose presentation just might change your worldview – he certainly changed a few among our group.”
– Sayer P. Martin, CFA, President, Sagacious & Programming Chair, CFA Society of Iowa
“Vikram is a lively and engaging speaker. Right from the first moment Vikram steps on stage he captivates the audience and involves them in the session- no one is looking at Blackberries or leaving the room – they are all fascinated with what he has to say. Vikram is a very versatile speaker- he can give thoughtful and entertaining solo presentations communicating a clear and relevant business message but in addition he is a real asset to panel discussions- he encourages debate and creates a compelling dialogue. You can trust Vikram to add value, insight and personality to any conference.”
– Victoria Chatterton, Conference Director, ICBI
“One of the most important topics in global economics today was presented with enthusiasm and humor, supported by well-researched analysis. This attention-grabbing presentation is a must for anyone who’s looking ahead to the Next Big Boom (or Bust).”
– Trey Seitz, Investment Manager, External Equities Department, Abu Dhabi Investment Authority
“Vikram is a wonderful speaker. He engaged the audience from his opening comments and kept them entertained and informed until the end. The Q and A session was equally beneficial. He handled all the questions with colorful concise answers and encouraged everyone to participate. The audience clearly enjoyed the presentation and gave him great reviews in the survey. I would certainly recommend him to any group that needs insight into Bubbles and the Global Economy.”
– Richard L. Ware, CFA, Program Chair, CFA Virginia
“PwC engaged Vikram Mansharamani to conduct a two hour session in August, 2011 as part of the firm’s full day pension plan Trustee education session. I worked with Vikram prior to his presentation and found him to be very responsive and easy to work with. Roughly 20 people attended the session. We asked Vikram to talk about his book, Boombustology. We provided the book to the attendees prior to the meeting; however, time constraints prevented many of the attendees from reading the book prior to the meeting. Vikram’s presentation — the first of the day — was very engaging… We were entertained, but we learned a lot…His arguments were very specific and quite convincing. His methodical approach resonated well with our group of accountants and financial professionals. Vikram kept the group’s interest and also entertained them. His professorial approach made me wish I were back in school… Of the four groups that presented that day, I felt that Vikram’s presentation was the best. We still discuss his material six months after the presentation.”
– C. B. Bianco, Director of Investments, PricewaterhouseCoopers
“We host a variety of authors, professors, economists, doctors, and architects for a lecture and Q&A session. Typically, these lectures draw between 30 and 60 members. On Wednesday September 28, 2011, Vikram Mansharamani joined 50+ members to discuss his book entitled “Boombustology”. Our members thoroughly enjoyed the evening and were very impressed with Dr. Mansharamani’s engaging style and charisma. After the Q&A section of the lecture, members swarmed Dr. Mansharamani to continue asking their questions before he had to depart for a flight to another lecture. I received positive feedback about Dr. Mansharamani’s lecture from our members and am pleased that his lecture could kick-off our fall season of library lectures.”
– Lesley Kiger, Activities Manager, The Yale Club of NYC
“I want to thank you for the terrific presentation you made to the Hamilton Trust on November 10, 2011 at the Brae Burn Country Club. Our membership enjoyed your talk and thought it was one of the best presentations we have had. Our 60-person membership, consisting mostly of CEO types, is a very sophisticated and learned audience. As you know, I was initially concerned that your subject on Boombustology and Yale connection might be too academic and that you also might have a challenge in controlling the questions and debate from our group. Well, I was amazed that your presentation totally captured their interest without exception, and you controlled their questions without losing a beat on your subject matter. The members felt you were providing them with a completely new way to view the economic signals of booms and busts, and were taken with your energy and vibrant presentation skills. You came highly recommended from your previous engagements and, after this delightful experience, I would highly recommend you to any other groups looking for an entertaining and stimulating speaker. Finally, you should know that, after your presentation, I received four unsolicited e-mails from members congratulating me for bringing in such a terrific speaker.”
– David Quade, President, Berkshire Income Realty & Chairman, Program Committee, The Hamilton Trust
“I have had the pleasure of working with Vikram on a number of occasions. There are few Academics that are as abreast of market concerns as he, but even more, there are few market strategists that can remain on top of the latest research and thinking. Vikram remains one of Track.com’s top speakers and dinner guests. His insights and easy-going, straightforward speaking style make him the go-to expert for China and anything global.”
– Robert Savage, Chief Executive Officer, Track.com
“What a hit you were at our meetings! So many people commented on how much they enjoyed your presentation and how much they gained from it! Thank you for spending the time you did up front to really understand our audience.”
– Manager of Advisor Training, Lincoln Financial Advisors
“Great session by Vikram in my opinion, and informal feedback has been quite positive. He didn’t stint on the prep time (in fact he asked for more), and it showed in how well prepared he was for the Invesco audience.”
– People Development Adviser, Human Resources, Invesco