Geoffrey Colvin

  • Senior Editor-at-Large, Fortune Magazine
  • Author, Talent is Overrated & The Upside of the Downturn
  • Host and panel moderator at Fortune’s premier conferences worldwide

Geoff Colvin is an award-winning thinker, author, broadcaster, and speaker on today’s most significant trends in business. As Fortune‘s Senior Editor-at-Large, he has become one of America’s sharpest and most respected commentators on leadership, globalization, wealth creation, the infotech revolution, and related issues. As anchor of Wall Street Week with Fortune on PBS, he spoke each week to the largest audience reached by any business television program in America.

As a speaker, Colvin has engaged hundreds of audiences on six continents. He is also a skilled on-stage interviewer whose subjects have included Jack Welch, Henry Kissinger, Richard Branson, the Prince of Wales, Bill Gates, Alan Greenspan, Steve Case, Ted Turner, George H.W. Bush, George W. Bush, and many others. He is the regular lead moderator of the Fortune Global Forum, and he serves as moderator for the International Business Leaders Forum in London.

 

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Rave Reviews About Geoffrey Colvin
Evaluation comments indicate that registrants especially liked your humor, the easy-to-understand message and the way you transitioned the information theory to real world applications. You generated an overall evaluation score of 8.64. This, coupled with the numerous positive comments, means your presentation, “How the Best Companies are Winning Today and Why Talent is Overrated.

A Sample of the Groups That Have Hosted Geoffrey Colvin
  • Boston Consulting Group
  • Omers Private Equity
  • Belmont University
  • Industrial Asset Management Council
Geoffrey Colvin - The Friction-Free Economy - Seizing Business Opportunity - Get Sharable Link
Geoffrey Colvin - The Friction-Free Economy - Seizing Business Opportunity
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Colvin as Moderator - Business vs. Government
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Global Competitiveness and Living Standards
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Talent is Overrated: A Lesson from GE
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Explore Geoffrey Colvin 's Talks
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Leading Ahead of What's Next: The new rules of business

The whole world of business is changing in historic and profound ways – technological disruption, government’s role, and the balance of global economic power are shifting massively — and it’s happening fast!  While political winds may blow toward restrictions on trade and immigration, the trends pow ...

The whole world of business is changing in historic and profound ways – technological disruption, government’s role, and the balance of global economic power are shifting massively — and it’s happening fast!  While political winds may blow toward restrictions on trade and immigration, the trends powering the friction-free economy are technological and going strong. Competing and winning in business today requires extraordinary leadership at every level of the organization. Colvin has a unique perspective rooted in long-standing relationships with the world’s top leaders in business and government. He knows what they’re seeing, thinking, and planning and reveals how they’re leading, making choices, and responding to today’s challenges in ways that others can learn from. A unifying theme as the economy transforms is that in almost every business, barriers to entry are coming down. Geoff’s message is optimistic and energizing: Opportunity is more widely available than ever. Every organization, and every person, can possess the 21st Century’s most valuable assets – openness to new ideas, ingenuity, and imagination.

Political Chaos and Your Business

The main theme of the Trump administration is unpredictability.  President Trump has said that his unpredictability is a deliberate strategy.   That makes the strategic planning a huge challenge for business leaders everywhere.  Geoff Colvin helps unwind the impact of Washington in terms you won’t h ...

The main theme of the Trump administration is unpredictability.  President Trump has said that his unpredictability is a deliberate strategy.   That makes the strategic planning a huge challenge for business leaders everywhere.  Geoff Colvin helps unwind the impact of Washington in terms you won’t hear elsewhere. Economic growth, consumer demand, interest rates, taxes, employment costs – cable news doesn’t spend much time on those issues, but all of them are set to change, transforming the business environment in important ways.  That’s why business people must keep the most significant issues in mind, even when the daily Washington chatter wanders away from them. Geoff explains why partisanship won’t decrease and policy stability will remain a dream. Yet business can’t afford to be paralyzed.  Geoff shows how the most successful business leaders are competing and winning in this uncertain environment. He brings a message of optimism that too often gets lost in the political rough and tumble.

The Economic Outlook

Even before the new alignment of power in Washington, it was the question on every business leader’s mind: Where are the U.S. and global economies going?  Now it’s more urgent – and uncertain.  In opinion surveys, top CEOs and ordinary consumers say the same thing: There’s too much change, too fast; ...

Even before the new alignment of power in Washington, it was the question on every business leader’s mind: Where are the U.S. and global economies going?  Now it’s more urgent – and uncertain.  In opinion surveys, top CEOs and ordinary consumers say the same thing: There’s too much change, too fast; we can’t keep up. We all remember a time when it was easier to anticipate where things might be headed, when the consequences of misjudgment were less severe. Now a meltdown of financial markets in China can ripple globally and take down a trillion dollars in assets in a single day – and such volatility is becoming more common. The economic picture changes by the day, and Geoff Colvin has a brilliant perch at Fortune to view it all – to get ahead of official statistics to uncover what’s going on. He reflects on the varied forces driving economic change and offers a glimpse of where each may take us.

Talent is Overrated: Unexpected Truths of Great Performance

What if everything you know about raw talent, hard work, and great performance is wrong? Scientific research on great performance shows that what most of us believe is off-base—which means we’ll never perform as well as we could. Geoff Colvin, author of the groundbreaking international bestseller Ta ...

What if everything you know about raw talent, hard work, and great performance is wrong? Scientific research on great performance shows that what most of us believe is off-base—which means we’ll never perform as well as we could. Geoff Colvin, author of the groundbreaking international bestseller Talent Is Overrated: What Really Separates World-Class Performers From Everybody Else, explains the findings and relates them to real life in real organizations. He shows how most organizations value the wrong things—how passion, honesty, and learning are more valuable than hours, IQ, or “native ability.” In this engaging, entertaining talk, Colvin demonstrates that world-class performance doesn’t come from mysterious natural gifts but rather from highly specific behaviors that every person and organization can adopt. Those who apply these principles gain a tremendous advantage.

Humans are Underrrated: What high achievers know that brilliant machines never will

Technology is now capable of doing jobs we once thought only humans could perform.   In a world where robots and smart machines factor prominently, what is the future of work?  Where will humans add value?  How will companies compete?  The answer lies in people acting more like . . . people.  Employ ...

Technology is now capable of doing jobs we once thought only humans could perform.   In a world where robots and smart machines factor prominently, what is the future of work?  Where will humans add value?  How will companies compete?  The answer lies in people acting more like . . . people.  Employers say the skills they’ll need most in the future are those that focus on social interaction: empathy above all, collaboration, storytelling, social sensitivity, brainstorming, creating and innovating with others, and leading.  The transition to these newly valuable skills is happening faster than organizations and most psyches can keep up with. Geoff reveals what top organizations are doing to meet the challenge. The good news is that we humans already have what it takes – it’s up to us to make of it what we will. 

Panel Moderator, Discussion Leader, Emcee/Host

Geoff Colvin’s unique gift is his ability to brilliantly moderate panels, lead onstage interviews and host/emcee.  He’s played these roles for more than two decades at Fortune magazine’s most prestigious conferences worldwide.   Top corporations and associations regularly utilize Geoff because he ha ...

Geoff Colvin’s unique gift is his ability to brilliantly moderate panels, lead onstage interviews and host/emcee.  He’s played these roles for more than two decades at Fortune magazine’s most prestigious conferences worldwide.   Top corporations and associations regularly utilize Geoff because he has a gift for getting the most out of participants; asking the right questions, listening intently to what’s being said on stage and responding to that -- keeping the discussion relevant and the energy high. He is so skilled that many top firms can’t imagine doing an important program without him. As an attendee at a recent conference told the event organizer, “Geoff Colvin literally made this conference.” 

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Biography

Geoff Colvin is an award-winning thinker, author, broadcaster, and speaker on the most significant trends and issues impacting business and the economy. As Fortune magazine’s senior editor-at-large, Geoff has an insider’s perspective fueled by long-standing relationships with the world’s top leaders in business and government.  He knows what they’re seeing, thinking, and planning and reveals how they’re leading, making choices, and responding to today’s challenges in ways that others can learn from.

Now in his fourth decade at Fortune, Geoff Colvin’s breadth of experience is impressive.  He is one of business journalism’s sharpest and most respected commentators on leadership, management, globalization, regulation, corporate governance, competition, the economy, the InfoTech revolution, human performance and related issues. Geoff’s regular column and frequent cover stories in Fortune have earned him millions of loyal readers.

Geoff is also one of America's preeminent business broadcasters. He is heard every day on the CBS Radio Network, where he has made over 10,000 broadcasts and reaches seven million listeners each week. He has appeared on Today, The O’Reilly Factor, Good Morning America, Squawk Box, CBS This Morning, ABC's World News Tonight, CNN, PBS's Nightly Business Report, and dozens of other programs. He served as anchor of Wall $treet Week with Fortune on PBS, and spoke each week to the largest audience reached by any business television program in America.

As a keynote speaker, Geoff has a knack for bringing clarity to the most important and complex issues impacting business and the economy.  He has spoken for scores of corporate and association conferences on six continents including dozens of high level Fortune conferences.  His speeches pull together timely insights and strategies and are tailored to deliver relevant insights that help leaders understand what the future holds. 

In addition to speaking Geoff is also a brilliant panel moderator, emcee and interviewer whose subjects have included Jack Welch, Henry Kissinger, Richard Branson, the Prince of Wales, Bill Gates, Alan Greenspan, Steve Case, Tony Blair, Michael Dell, Ted Turner, George H.W. Bush, George W. Bush, Henry Paulson, Ben Bernanke, and many others.

Geoff is a respected author whose groundbreaking international bestseller, Talent Is Overrated: What Really Separates World-Class Performers from Everybody Else, has been published in a dozen languages. The Upside of the Downturn: Management Strategies for Difficult Times was named “Best Management Book of the Year” by Strategy + Business magazine. Geoff’s latest book (released August, 2015) is called Humans are Underrated: What High Achievers Know That Brilliant Machines Never Will.  It’s based on the idea in his wildly popular article in the 2014 Fortune 500 issue – “In The Future Will There Be Any Work Left for People to Do?”  It looks at the trend of technology displacing more jobs than it creates and the ways humans will create value for their organizations and their careers in the changing economy. The ideas he shares have profound implications for every business and industry.

A native of Vermillion, South Dakota, Geoff Colvin is an honors graduate of Harvard with a degree in economics and has an M.B.A. from New York University.