JULY 19, 2019 | 03:24

The Active Share, a new podcast from William Blair, brings you less obvious investing insights in a world that’s always changing. Join host Hugo Scott-Gall for thought-provoking conversations with thought leaders like David Epstein, New York Times bestselling author, company executives, such as Tom Ricketts, chairman of the Chicago Cubs, and our own analysts and portfolio managers.

Meet Our Moderator

Hugo Scott-Gall, Partner




Hugo Scott-Gall: Welcome to The Active Share. I’m your host, Hugo Scott-Gall. At William Blair, we know the world is always changing. And that’s why, in this podcast, we’ll bring you perspectives on investing that aren’t always so obvious. We’ll interview thought leaders like David Epstein, best-selling author of Range: Why Generalists Triumph in a Specialized World. In that book, Epstein uses Roger Federer and Tiger Woods as an analogy for generalists versus specialists.

David Epstein: I think that Tiger path is actually really the exception and we’ve been treating it as the norm. And I don’t think we’re in danger of undervaluing specialization, whereas we are in danger of missing out on a lot of the power of generalists.

Hugo Scott-Gall: We talk about humans versus machines when it comes to investing. Why are computers good at chess and Jeopardy but not cancer research.

David Epstein: Chess is like a perfect activity for computers. It’s based on pattern recognition, like recurring patterns. It is incredibly rule bound. Right now, the free chess app on your phone can beat Garry Kasparov. The reason why Watson was great on Jeopardy and poor in cancer research is that we know the answers to Jeopardy.

Hugo Scott-Gall: We go on location to places like Wrigley Field and sit down with company executives like Tom Ricketts, Chairman of the Chicago Cubs, and talk about the importance of good chemistry on your team.

Tom Ricketts: People ask me how important is it – what I always say to people, “Think about the coworker you dislike the most, and then imagine that person with you on every plane ride, every hotel, every game.” If you don’t have good chemistry on your team, it can’t help but have an effect on player performance.

Hugo Scott-Gall: And how amazing it was for Tom to celebrate with five million Cubs’ fans after they won the World Series.

Tom Ricketts: Streets were packed, and people just cheering, and people happy. We drove by – there was a little kid sitting on his parent’s shoulders with a poster that said, “We did it, Grandpa.” And it just reminds you that, like I said earlier, the baseball team’s part of your family.

Hugo Scott-Gall: You’ll also hear from William Blair’s own analysts and portfolio managers on timely topics such as how consumer habits are being influenced by digital and social media.

Lauren Thompson: Social media has given a platform for small startup brands to be able to showcase their trend, their identity, without needing to be some bellwether heritage brand that gets invited into those communities.

Hugo Scott-Gall: And about disruption and innovation

Kwesi Smith: When you think about searches, 50% of all searches will be voice searched by roughly 2020. And 72% of voice activated speaker owners say now that it’s become a part of their daily routine.

To hear additional insights from William Blair Investment Management, visit us at blog.williamblair.com. The Active Share is available on iTunes, Stitcher, Google Podcast, and TuneIn. For questions, comments, or topics you’d like to hear discussed, email us at podcastim@williamblair.com.

Meet Our Moderator

Hugo Scott-Gall, Partner


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