My guest today is Ryan Patel. Ryan is a world-renowned go-to authority on global business, political economy & corporate governance. Ryan is a top on-air contributor on CNN and has been featured on Fox Business, New York Times, BBC, CNBC, Entrepreneur, Inc, Forbes, Nasdaq, etc and is an international keynote speaker whose clients include Adobe, Mastercard, World Economic Forum, The Wall Street Journal, The Economist, Reuters, HP, American Cancer Society, LEGO, London School of Economics, Wharton Business School, etc.
Let’s talk about Ryan’s career and how he got here.
In this episode we talk about:
- What 10 year old Ryan wanted to be when he grew up, and what would he say if he could see grown up on TV as a on-air contributor on CNN International, with his distinct style: colourful socks and comfortable shoes
-Ryan also shares snippets from his early career, which position was the most formative, how he got hired there, and lessons he still remembers today
Ryan explains what he does today, because to the outside world, it looks like he has such a glamourous job, traveling around the world and speaking on world’s most impressive stages. What does a typical day look like?
- How Ryan stays up to date on the state of the global economy, tech, politics, entrepreneurship, leadership etc.
- How Ryan deals with haters online...
And so much more!
Follow Ryan on social media;
Liked this episode? A few things:
1. Share the podcast with three of your closest friends! And please leave a great review on Apple Podcasts here or Spotify here (tap on the three-dot menu under the cover art of the podcast) , as it would mean a lot to me and hopefully help others discover it.
2. You will love my emails called Charge-Up! I send them every few weeks, they're no fluff no spam, where I share my favourite career insights from movies, TV shows, news and my own personal experiences, that I don't share anywhere else. Make sure you sign up here!
3. Come hang out with me LIVE on LinkedIn and Youtube every Friday at 2 pm CET where I answer your questions and often bring in fab guests:
Hey, welcome back. My guest today is Ryan Patel. Ryan is a world renowned go to authority on global business, political economy, and corporate governance. You might have seen Ryan. He is a top on air contributor on CNN, CNN International. And he's also been featured on Fox Business, New York Times, BBC, CNBC, Entrepreneur, Inc.,
Forbes, Nasdaq. Phew. And is an international keynote speaker whose clients today include Adobe, Mastercard. World Economic Forum, The Wall Street Journal, The Economist, Reuters, HP, American Cancer Society, Lego, London School of Economics, Wharton Business School, etc, etc. Like, what is this career? This is amazing.
How did Ryan get here? Let's learn as much as we can. Ryan, this is such an honor. Welcome to
the show. Thank you for having me.
This is so exciting, Ryan. We're going to get right into it. And I want to ask you something very specific. You know, you're on TV so often, as you know, like I said, the on air contributor on CNN, CNN International, and you have a very distinct personality.
Style, right? You'll have like suited and booted and then you'll have like your colorful socks and your comfortable shoes. That's sort of your style, isn't it? And you're traveling, you're doing things and suddenly you are told there's an on air segment and you have to be ready and you're like, okay, let's do this.
Prepare a green screen background and there you go. You know, I know this is one of the many things you do today, but when you. Think about the present. What do you think 10 year old Ryan Patel would say if he could see you right now? Greedy two parter? Also back then, that 10 year old Ryan? What did he think he'd be doing as a grown up?
Well, first off I got some great producers around me who who do give me a lot of time At at times to be able to do it and I don't just to be clear I don't have a green screen so whenever you see me on the road or somewhere else I get some help from either the hotel or somebody to Allow me to get me in the right space and lighting.
So obviously I've learned it's not something that it just comes through, but yeah, there, you know, we may have another story where, you know, the quickest I've gotten was 10 minutes to get on air. And that that's another story, I guess, for another, another time later. But, you know, I think, you know, when you ask what, what the 10 year old Ryan would be thinking, he'd probably be amazed that, you know, you're on TV.
I mean, I don't really think, I mean, it's not that this is not something I wanted to do or even thought I could do or had the opportunity to do, I think is probably the best thing. And so it wasn't even on my mind. So when you asked me what I wanted to be, I wasn't like. You have some past guests like Dan Roth who came on here who said he knew exactly what he wanted to be when he wanted to be a journalist.
I unfortunately did not, and I think part of that, part of that reason was I was always so curious about other subjects. And I think that, unknowingly, was probably the right thing for me and for my path, just to learn a lot about a lot of different things. And, and I think that led to even through my college where I took some...
You know, at UC Berkeley, took, some could argue, I took some random classes from, you know, took Indian, Indian mythology, you know, Southeast Asian, Indian writers, I took Scandinavian studies, I took oceanography, nutrition, nutritional, nutritional at 10, I mean, I took all kinds, just, I mean, I think just because that they were, they were interesting, not to say that I wanted to be in those fields specifically, but I think if you look at what I do now, I A lot of it cross intersects and a lot of things that I do, and it touches a lot of different communities, different subjects.
And I think it gave me that foundation. We're now looking back at it. It was very helpful. Wow.
This is so beautiful. And, you know writing, oceanography, mythology a couple of other completely unrelated subjects that you, you know, Put in together in this diverse basket, which was your undergrad.
I love that you followed your curiosity, Ryan. You didn't just think about it, but you actually followed it through and it continues to be a key theme. of your career today because your, your, your depth and breadth are both so expansive. Looking back, so I just want to stay here for a minute with you. And I don't like to stereotype as such, but most of the time South Asian immigrant parents do like to have a plan.
for their kids. So were there some sort of minor palpitations when they saw you doing like here and there and this and that? Or was it like, do, do you Ryan? Whatever.
No, I don't think they knew, you know, they, I mean, I think they still probably don't know what I do. I mean, they, they, they, they obviously support me for the things that I want to be able to do.
And obviously I was the first in the family to go to. To go to, you know, to the university here in the United States. So, you know, I, I think it was a blessing and an appreciation, you know, when I was at Berkeley, I appreciated. the opportunity because I know, you know, being able, you know, going overseas back to India, specifically how lucky I was to be able to go because there were so many kids wanting to go to that.
So I think the appreciation was there. I think, you know, when you think about what, there was no push. I mean, I think it's a lot of unknown. I think when you ask what, you know, it's great that you followed my curiosity. Like, I don't even know what that word was. I mean, I don't even know what that meant when you're at that age.
I mean, it's, it's hard. I mean, I think it's hard. It's easier now just because I know I believe in the things that I do and, and, and confident, but like when you do something different, curiosity leads you to look at different things where people kind of say, stay in your lane. Here's be this thing and be that thing.
And now it's become a lot easier, but you know, it's hard. So for those who are trying to, Hey, you know, how do I be curious and how do I keep learning? Right. It's a process because there is a lot of noise around the things where people are trying to tell you, well, you should go into this path and this is the path they'll take you versus not knowing that.
Yeah, you can go that path. You can also learn from other paths and combine them and still be stronger in one path. There isn't a specific path that you can do. So, I think to those who are listening to this interview, looking at your careers, you know, find things that you're, it's easy to say find things that you're passionate about, but like, you know, it's really, it's hard to see where they all connect, but I think you'll be able to connect them when you find the things that you like, you know, that are interesting and curious to you because you'll work harder at it.
Yeah. Yeah. And, and, and Ryan, if you, if you could go back, would you do this exactly the same way? Back at college?
Yeah, I mean, I mean, yeah, I mean, I did the other half of that story was I did a lot. I did really well in my, you know, in class. I mean, I also did figure out something that I was really good at was, you know, analytic, you know, analytical.
Thinking, you know, organizational behavior classes. I did really, really well in, you know, I did, you know, I did well in, in, in business writing business strategy innovation that wasn't, that wasn't really kind of the path that was going. But if I had to. We do it. I probably would have probably put more emphasis on on spending more time networking versus just the classes.
I think the classes I took were well versed to challenge me, so I didn't really take them. That was like, Hey, just take all one sector. Do all the classes that you're really good at. I think that struggle was important. But I think if I had to go back to read to go back and do it again, I should have been more active.
In the student life community. I mean, you always think you could do more. Obviously. I thought I did a lot just with all the studying and all the things that you can do. But I think the, the networking of people to grow it more. I think I, I mean, I think I would've been able to tell myself, Hey, do it more of it.
But obviously I'm an introvert by nature, so that would've been hard. But, you know, just to get that push would've been quite
helpful. I understand. I really appreciate your honesty here, Ryan. And You know, probably you did the best you could get good grades, had your nose in your books and, and whatever socializing you could do.
Cause coursework is
insane. Work at the side. You got to make money.
Oh, you were supporting yourself, which is not easy in a expensive place like California. So. Yeah. But I like what you said. I wouldn't change the struggle. The struggle is important. Part of that character, right? That makes it the diamond and we don't want it to be easier because then the diamond won't be as shiny.
Oh, no, I, I want it to be easy. I've asked for it to be easy, but I've never, I've never had the easy path even to now. So I tried for it. And my wife always tells me, you don't want that silver spoon, even if you got it. I'm like, Yeah, you're probably right, but that doesn't mean I don't want to ask for it.
a hundred percent. Exactly. And we're talking as grownups here, right? In our thirties and forties, comparing to our ten year old. Of course, the ten year old's like, make it easy, please, God. So I, I totally hear that. And, you know, back on the theme of origin story and our starting our, our, our childhood and our career.
Talk to us about your early career, Ryan. When you look back, those first couple of positions, was there any one particular one that comes to mind as the most formative? And talk to us about how'd you get hired there? And if there are lessons you still remember from, you know,
till today. I, I think, you know, when you, when you look at my, my experience has been on the consumer side first, in retail, restaurant, corporate companies.
I worked for publicly traded companies that were large. So you learn right away that when you're scaling something. And if it's a company that is scaling, they're going to end up tending to use you in multiple ways, should you show that ability to do that. And so, yes, that means that you'll get, you know, some could argue that you get paid less to do more.
And, and, you know, I would say, you know, when you can show that ability that I think I did. That you could do strategy, you could do finance, you could be in the construction, you know, read plans, you could, you know, run a performa, you could be in a marketing room when there's a new brand, you know, give advice, right when you're in those types of positions that you can be in the room of those, and you're adding value.
I think that to me was the aha moment that, hey, Yeah, I might not have 20 plus years experience in some of these industries as others, but I'm adding value to wherever the brand is going. And I didn't that wasn't even part of my job description by far. But then people kind of go, Hey, let's, let's keep them involved.
You know, he, you know, you're younger, but you're, you're adding value. And I think when you have that kind of trust, You know, I think you know, one good experience that I remember, you know when I was, you know, the CFO at the time allowed me to have, you know, help me build a performer with him. I mean, I didn't have that kind of experience.
And when you can have people like that trusting you and knowing that you're smart enough to figure it out, you kind of want to work harder. And so I think it is around the people at the end of the day. You know, I think when you look at my. Early career, you know, when you think about big companies and the food side and the retail side, the consumer side, you know, I think that has led through the, my experience at the end of the day, always knowing who your stakeholders are and that it's multiple and no matter what industry you are in.
And I think that was something that was really powerful for me.
I love those. I love those lessons. Doing not necessarily what's on the job description. Yeah. Doing that, but doing other things which are not on the job description.
I want to say though, that's not also easy because if you can't be upset at times, you feel like you could do more.
You feel like you look to go to other places. And I think at the end of the day, you, you, you want to just worry about what you can control. So you can control how much. Things that you can add value back to yourself. So like, I mean, at one point I knew every single mall, every single city in the U S and globally, every major, like I do the most irrelevant facts about, you know, how many visitors come into the city or, you know, in, you know, what, how many, what was the sales at Macy's in Herald square and, you know, how many millions of people came now, how does that help you in the rest of the things that you do?
I don't know, but you, you are obviously being prepared the most that you can be for any kind of conversation and I think that eventually at some point will be useful to you. But at the time that you're thinking about it, you may go, well, that doesn't lead to my promotion or that doesn't lead to where I'm had.
But, you know, that does keep adding character. It keeps adding confidence and it keeps adding that value back to you as a person that you are adding. You're not waiting for others to do that.
I understand. I understand. I, I love this. And I want to just lightly go off on a tangent here, Ryan, because I remember when I started my career, one of the things that I remember my boss telling me at back at GE capital, I was very heavy in recruiting.
We were recruiting like 500 people a month. It was a insane period in the early 2000s. A boom in this business process, outsourcing BPO industry. I remember him saying, always have your facts and figures ready. Thank you. Always speak analytically with data and you will, you will get respected more.
And I hear you talk about how you developed your analytical skills. And if you're on the consumer side, speaking about numbers, they come easily to you, you immediately sound trustworthy. So this is one way while you're already in the company to stand out and gain credibility.
Do you agree? Yeah. I mean, I, you know, and then when someone, I mean, the thing is not just about saying those numbers.
The thing is being able to explain and communicate. To tell others why it's important and then waiting for that question to come back because there's going to be a question that someone's going to ask you that they don't believe it, or they want to go somewhere else and then being able to, you know, really dissect to that person that you do know your stuff because at the end of the day, there's a lot of me now.
There's a lot of people just throwing stuff and not knowing it and I think part of that is part of that is how do you stand yourself out is to really kind of engage in a deeper conversation of what those numbers actually mean, or and or that here's some numbers that maybe there's not enough information and being able to call that out so that people can kind of go okay.
Yeah, this looks like it, but yeah, you're right, you know, you're right that there's some more information that we need.
That's a very good ad. And I, the beauty of this answer is that we can all learn this. So if someone is listening right now and thinking, I'm not really good at that. You can learn this.
You can take a couple of courses on, on critical reasoning, analytical thinking, and you'll get better because there's practice daily. Because there's so many things around us. And,
and I would, I would start, I would start, you know, don't, it can be daunting just to go read a report or, or, you know, just pick a topic that you like.
Not if it's not even if it's in your industry, pick something that you like, if it's shopping or look at, you know, how many boxes get delivered a day and you can kind of see. It'll, it's like a story. You can kind of put it to your own story. And then when you see it, you're going to pick out the things that you like and you'll be able to
I love that. I was going to say that storytelling behind what's behind numbers. So fantastic. And just rewinding a bit, Ryan, so is there any particular position that sticks out in your mind? Because hospitality, retail, consumer are extremely cutthroat, lots of competition. Lots of people want that job. What, how did, I'm stumbling one sec.
What is it that helped you to stand out at the interviewing, the recruiting phase? I
mean, products sell younger and cheaper. I mean, that might be the, that might, that might've been part of it. You know, one of the things, what else? I don't, you know, it's interesting. I think when I look back and look at, you know, I I'm still connected to a handful of those C level folks who hired me.
I think just the, the, the thing that stood out was my ability to be able to comprehend a lot of different things. And, you know, they, they would use the words that they would use. Hardworking and how do you know that, right? You know, in the interview, you know, how do you know that you have the passion about the things that you want to do, right?
And do you, will you not quit on something when it gets hard? I think back in those days. Those are the qualities that they were looking for. And was this person going to be smart enough to be able to give me a recommendation on something? And so I think part of that was attested in many of the interviews, which I know they were specifically asking very micro about like, what would you do on this?
Not a hypothetical. It was like a real life thing that they're used to. So if you gave an answer that was not in the daily deals of what you're supposed to be doing, they would know.
Understood. Understood. Yeah hardworking, smart. They don't know that yet, right? They haven't hired you yet. So
it's. How do you know that?
Yeah. I mean, you, you really don't. Right. And it's, it's based on your past work to what you've done. Right. Usually I used to get like, well, you did all those things. Well, walk me through, again, they're looking for familiarity of a, of a situation because they're familiar with your background. So it's no different if somebody asked me, Hey, you know, I know, you know, I know the tech scene in Amsterdam.
And so I'd be like, Oh, did you know X, Y, and Z? Did you go here? And if they didn't answer it like with confidence or in a way that they don't, you kind of know that they don't really know. Or if they answered it even better, like, Oh yeah, I know so and so and so and so they can voucher. I mean, it just leads to a different conversation.
Understood. Understood. Love that. All right. So Ryan, now coming to today, you, you know, seems to the outside world that you have this glamorous job life. Traveling around the world, speaking on some of the world's most prolific stages and being on air very frequently. On you know, CNN, I think you must've been on air.
What is it? A hundred, 200 times at least. So, you know, you have so many,
sorry, say again. No, no. Yeah. Yeah. I think it's a little bit more than that, but maybe that's the year.
Yeah. Ah, yeah. So you. Your brain must have so many amazing stories, like insane, crazy stories. So we want to hear all of it. We want to hear what a typical day would look like for someone like you.
And what would like the craziest extreme end of the spectrum type of day look like share with us, because you do, you know, not just the speaking and on stages and all that, but you have very interesting brand campaigns. You're, you're doing lots of corporate stuff as well. So talk to us about
Yeah, you know, and so the day is not the same. Right. And the day obviously comes in, in, in different aspects of, you know, if it's that, if I'm going to speak at somewhere, I mean, the media portion is technically the, the smallest of the things that I do, but obviously it's the shiniest thing, but also I've gotten really good at it.
We've it makes it, I think it's really efficient. You know, I mentioned, you know, how many times we come on air. It's, you know, based on the breaking news since I'm on the newsroom at times, but you know, for me, you know, I sit on, I think I live in a couple buckets. You know, you think about the advisory board work, advisory board work that I do, you know, that's what C level folks that come and call or we set up and we have conversations, which I love.
That's just something that I love because it's this exchange of ideas or push to help and get better how you make an impact. Right. You know, I think obviously the speaking thing, but, you know, we pick it. Right. large, impactful things. So you think about the and then the, you know, the media and then the teaching stuff.
All those things have one thing in common for me is like, how do you build people? How do you make impacts? Right? So my day Is around those kind of themes that, hey, I'm a part of these conversations, or I'm leading a campaign on financial accessibility, or I'm leading a campaign on cyber security, you know, what else can I do among those different buckets?
And so I'm just fortunate to be able to be around some great C level leaders, too, and you can just hang out and be at different places, and it's... If you know, it's still in shock when people are asking me questions, but I'm asking questions back. So I'm always learning. So like, I, I don't feel like You know, when I'm in these situations, it's, it's, it's, I'm always picking something up and, and trying to keep adding value to it.
So like me being a part of corporations across different sectors, to me, that is what drives me, like, I want to be about healthcare. I want to be a part of cyber. I want to be about insurance. Like, I feel like there's not too much, you know, I've been a part of supply chain. I don't think there's too many sectors that I can't.
Be a part of, because I think I know enough about it and also and, or I've the experience that I've been able to do it. I have accessibility to a lot of things that are working on. And I think sometimes being that kind of unique voice in the room that's different is, I think kind of suits, suits me.
I love that. I love that we, like we talked about earlier, probably someone must have told you at some point, Ryan a while ago, pick a lane, damn it. And you were like, Nope, Nope.
Nope. Yeah, I think if you asked me if I'd do it again, I probably would have. It would have been easier out of my life and it would have been easier just doing it.
I think now I'm so... But you may
have, but you may have been a bit bored. We don't know that because there's really so much variety in what you
do today, right? Yeah, and I don't feel like I'm, you know, at that, I distinctly remember when people go, Hey, pick, pick one thing, pick, pick a title so we can.
And I think what I learned from, from that, I think I would tie it to my LinkedIn story. You know, LinkedIn could have easily put me into a bucket and maybe they try to, but they, you know, I think it's clear to that audience, my platform there that that's not, you know, be you. And it's not my fault that I have access and I've experienced in many of these different things, and I'm only building more on it.
And so, yeah, I can go keynote a supply chain conference and be a part of it and talk about that and be among those experts. And then go across cybersecurity and do the same and have the, I think the, the respect from those who are in the room who know their stuff saying, no, Brian knows this stuff and how do we get forward and but also those who want to know about those things.
I want to be inclusive of them. And I think I can speak and include them at the same thing. I just look at myself in the audience. Like, how do you try to give the most value to people when they're there, no matter if you're on TV or if you're on. You know, speaking of something or even doing a one on one conversation or talking about career, it's, it's like, you know, know your audience, know who you're trying, you know, you can't be, you can't be everything to everybody, which I can't, but I can only be me.
And that's, you know, not everyone will accept me. It's clear. But you know, I am a little bit different and I, and I, you know, I, I finally have leaned into that and be like, you know, what people who want to work with me or people who want to be pushed and want to make the change is going to have me around.
Yeah, I think that's a big part of your personal brand is that that you're different and you're a generalist who's a proud generalist who doesn't, you know, pay heed to so much advice out there. Speaking of LinkedIn, right, there'll be like lots of posts with words like should, always. Never. I almost always tend to unfollow such advice because the real stuff,
it's more nuanced, it's more complicated.
And it's funny because, you know, the word generalist to me, sometimes, you know, I know that's a compliment, but I think some people don't take that as a compliment for those who are listening. They may go, well, someone called me a generalist. Well, it's interesting. Do you, do
you take it as a compliment or it makes you cringe a bit?
I don't care. Like I've, I've got to the point to where it doesn't really bother me. Probably when younger, it probably did a little bit just because then people don't really, I mean, don't really understand it, did their homework. I know you did your homework on me. So like, I know that, you know, where I'm really good at.
And I think part of that is everyone's always underestimated, you know, underestimated things that we all do at times. And I think when you get underestimated that and you get put in a situation. To showcase your knowledge base in certain categories, people kind of go, Oh, it's so funny. How did he know so much about finance?
How did he know? And then they kind of ask you about your background. And then they go, they, because they're trying to figure out why they're trying to connect the dots
want to And then when they do, they go, okay, that makes sense. They go, oh yeah, I scale. I've been a part of opening international countries.
Oh, okay. That's why, you know, supply chain or, oh, okay. That's why, you know, this, they just need to figure that out because they only see. What they see. And I think, I think at that point, it's always fun being able to kind of match wits to show like, Hey, yeah, I know, I know your role. I know how hard it is.
Here's the things that I think is hard. And they're like, how did you know that? And again, it's. It's meant to be, I don't care what people think about me, I'm just trying to make the most impact that I can in places that people believe and the values are the same thing I can. And I think, I think we all need to be, you know, need to be knowledgeable around a lot of different things.
How can we make decisions on it? You really don't need to be the experts in everything. And you know, do, do I think I'm an expert in a handful of things? Sure. But I mean, that's not, I'm not sitting here trying to say that I'm just trying to. I see what we think, right? We need to be better as leaders as as making the most impact.
How do you connect with all those different types of folks, different generations, different type of sectors? Because we are in this global interconnectedness and at least the things that I do. So, you know, that means you've got to know a lot of things about a lot of different types of cultures and people.
inevitable. And you're like, Oh, hold the phone. I can't suddenly start talking about Ukraine. I didn't come prepared, but it's so it's like you said, it's so interconnected. I love, I love, I love what you said about know what your audience cares about. Share that with them because then you're like, Oh, It's specifically supply chain and this part of supply chain.
Are we talking about healthcare and this part of healthcare? Oh yeah, I know this. I've worked on this before. And we, we tailor, we tailor it accordingly and, and that creates impact. Like you're saying, you're all about impact.
And you know what the funny part of that too is that. There's a lot of people who want to get into the industry too.
And I don't forget that because obviously at one point we all were like that way and no one gave you an opportunity. So I'm very mindful of that because no one really here, here's this experience. Now you go run with it. Here's the international experience. Nobody gives it to you. You've got to be able to, so if you can be.
inclusive to people who go, Hey, I can be a part of this and I want to learn. And again, I think back to the LinkedIn platform. I mean, when I was talking about the trade wars, a lot on air, I was surprised a little bit to see how people who were not in trade, they wanted to be a part of this conversation.
They wanted to be educated. So I think that I was creating content around, well, how do I, how do I include that? And how do I include people who want, just have a place? To be safe to talk about this. And I think that's what I've done. We've done, or I've done I say we mean us as a LinkedIn community as a platform to be able to do that.
And I think I take pride of that, that, you know, building a safe place where people can comment even if their experiences isn't that, but they obviously touch a little bit and they can. At the end of the day, how do you not get better? You got to try it somewhere to be able to get better and to test your theories, to test your knowledge base.
And, you know, I'm always going to try to respond. So if it's something that I can help push and go ahead, you know, questions or even, so, Hey, this is what I think, Ryan, what do you think? You know, that's helpful. I think.
A hundred percent. I, I also appreciate the fact Ryan, that when you share, whether it's on you know, Instagram or you share on, on LinkedIn, first of all, you're very You're very generous with, with sharing your lessons.
You also make the lessons as well as current affairs. You make it very accessible for people like me. I will say between brackets Ryan is curious, right? So if someone is wondering if someone is curious, check out Ryan's profile on LinkedIn, cause Ryan talks about this type of stuff a lot, beautiful, right?
The atypical crazy stuff we wanna know. The world wants to know. The nation wants to know. So talk to us about that side, which isn't always visible on
camera. Well, I mean, there was a recent segment the Credit Suisse and the UBS agreement deal that happened over the week. It happened over a weekend. It was on a Sunday and I get a call.
It was like, Hey, can you come on in 10 minutes? And that typically does not happen. And obviously I had been talking about it the week before because Silicon Valley bank, I knew it was a big deal. And they were like, Hey, you know, can you come on? It was in my household. It was just like fire drill everywhere.
Everybody running around. Cause it was a Sunday and you get on and I got barely, you can hear like in my breath, like you could barely like everything has got to be, you know, kind of. Straight, you know, getting everything going on and and you and I gave it obviously it was a Luckily, it was a great segment and and they appreciate it But you think about to me why I went on and did that because I couldn't say no I don't say yes all the time I tried to for the producers that always put me in the right spot and tailored tailored toward my experience I'll never say no to them.
But you know, I I think You think about the that segment? I wanted people to know how big of a deal that was. You talk about two banks that are 5 trillion, like this could have been not, you know, that was part of the reason why I went on to do it. Not so much to say, Hey, look at me. I'm on. TV, it's not about that, you know, it's more about what can you give that's a little bit different.
So I think that's, that's one, you know, obviously some, as you know, I have some fun, you know, I, I try to be fun, not try to be fun. I am fun, but I just don't show it all the time, you know, behind the scenes, you know, you'll see the setup and you'll see, you know, I think I've, I've shared a couple behind the scenes where I'm in a hotel room where there's like a lamp to the side and, and there's like all this boxes to the side and then, but you see a clean shot.
In the background, people think it's glamorous. They're like, Oh, my God, it's so awesome. They're like, No, you got to get the lighting right. You got to get the height of the camera right. And you know, you're, you're, you're, you're in these different types of places. I mean, I remember there was a, I shot one in the NASDAQ.
And it was a kind of a last minute thing where they had to find me a flash room and it was like upstairs in like a box and like, it was just, it was a unique space. You're like, but in the back you see the NASDAQ, but you don't see all the mess that's around. And so Matt Matt you know, magic TV or TV magic is what they call it.
It's all about like, even right now, like I'm not on TV right now, but it's all about what's in the frame, what's in the frame, the mess behind in front and at the back, nobody needs to know at the back, it's all, you know, it's all clear and it's a TV ready and we got to pick our battles. So, and, and, and conserve
our, speak about the things that you care about.
Right. I mean, that's the, that's the career, do the things that you want, you feel like you can make the most impact that you feel like you're, you're very confident that you can do, and if there's other things that you want to do that you don't know yet, or you don't not confident yet, then go prepare yourself, don't wait for others to help you.
I mean, you may have a couple of great mentors to help you, but like, you've got to keep pushing because you know, you have that control, otherwise you'll be just frustrated. Yeah,
and you raise your hand. You raise your hand whenever you want to and not expect someone to pick and say, Hey, Ryan, what do you think?
No, put your hand up. Because sometimes life doesn't work. That life doesn't work with handouts, right? Ryan, speaking of all this work, right? So, as we know, you present so frequently on The topics we talked about global economy, tech, politics, entrepreneurship, leadership. Now I have a very detailed question here.
How do you stay to date? You know, is it just Not just, I mean, just in air quotes, reading current publications, is that, you know, does that suffice? I'm asking because for someone who's listening today and who would like to be known as an expert in a very specific field and get interviewed publicly like you do, how much do they need to know?
Just enough to be dangerous, can the audience tell, talk to us about like all of this stuff because there's so much that
goes behind the scenes. The audience can tell. I mean, I don't know if, they know if you know your stuff. I mean, it's clear. Like, I mean, you, you, you know, and I think, I mean, if you're saying how do you become an expert, I think it ties back to your own experience.
Right. I mean, I didn't go into this going, Hey, I want to be an expert at X. I think your experience allows you to give you that foundation. And how you, what you get to decide what you want to talk about, right? It's not like somebody says, well, Hey, go speak on if on finance, but if you're an accounting, like, you know, why are you going to make that jump?
You, if you want to be an accounting expert, then, you know, you're going to know everything ins and outs of accounting, but you're already going to do that for your job anyway. Right. You're practicing it. You're trying to do that and know everything that's in that field that you're going to study that.
And I mean, you would write if you want to know more to be better at your job. So in doing so, I think you'd be naturally become your company treats you as an expert if you do your job to that degree. And I think to stay up with current affairs in general, right? You know, I don't think I. You know, yeah, you got to have some kind of foundation, like obviously knowing the history of a lot of these, you know, geopolitical stuff that sometimes doesn't really relate to you.
I can tell you maybe, I can tell you 10 years ago, I wasn't up to speed with everything that was going on. Obviously, you know, once my work started doing that, you kind of then try to understand as much. Yeah, I do
read a lot. How did you... How did you go from not knowing much, like you said, 10 years ago?
So obviously it's a 10 year journey, but some of the things that you feel like, Oh, this is interesting. I'm going to grasp this. Are there some sources that are more useful than others?
Yeah. I mean, I've read sources from all over the world, so I didn't pick one. Right. And so you also kind of see that there is also a little bit of an angle in some of different places where you read it.
And so if you're mindful of that, and then you have your own hypothesis, you kind of figure those things out. So I never really get my sort, you know, when I was starting, it wasn't so much like, well, here's what it is. I was really being curious. Well, what is, what does this look like in the UK? You know, even right now, like when we look about in the U.
S. inflation and look about the Europe inflation, yeah, the Europe's inflation is a lot, you know, they still got to recover. People could be saying, well, it's okay here in Europe now. Well, no, we're still going through the process. You may not know that if you read something that was not from that region, right?
You, you know, and I think just having that analytical piece, and I also, the thing for me, how I stay up to, up to speed, and I'm fortunate, it isn't so much up to speed, but I, what I see what's coming is having this access to these great leaders that come to me. That is another level, right? Because I'm seeing real time on how they've been doing the last two years, how, and, and we're going back and forth.
Did you do this? Do that? It's almost like I was, you know, it's almost like I was a part, I feel like I was a part of an organization even though I wasn't. I'm getting to hear the journey and story, but also I'm adding value or and or questioning. Well, why did this not work right now? I'm taking that and adding value, you know, adding what is going on.
Why does things don't work the way it's supposed to? Or why? Why does it take so long to develop a chip? You know, what does this mean for technology? What does AI ethics mean? Like, How, how, how do I know all these things? It's like, Hey, I saw these things already coming in conversation. I'm curious about it.
How does it tie to me? How does it tie to my own experience? You know, I'm not trying to be in those lanes. I'm trying to be like, well, I know that this is going to go this way because I'm already seeing it. Right. And so it's kind of, I'm taking what I'm saying is you can read all you want. And I think it's great to have a foundation, but you've got to tie it back to your own experience.
Otherwise it doesn't really mean very much.
And you may not come across as authentic if you're always quoting other people. So I completely hear you on this. You, you got your sources, multiple sources. I love that you said you have one particular source and I don't mean source in a journalist sense, but also like, Oh, this is, you know, what I learned.
It typically tends to be this particular website. And then you go to something which is completely different because you want to have that balanced view. But I love that you said, bring your own opinions because people want to hear that. It's not just about, you know, parroting what you read. Because honestly, AI can, AI can do that.
why part of it is I don't read as much too as most people think. It's just because you, you, you have enough, you don't want to be. You know, influence either, right? And again, I always tie back to my experience. I can all, you cannot, you can't lie about your experience. You can, you, you can only tell the things that you know.
And again, the people will know if you know, you know, the things that you're talking about. And so I think that's if you can stay within your, your, your comfort zone, you know, you usually won't go wrong because you're telling something that you're seeing. If you're trying to say something or do something that you feel is out of reach, you know, people can kind of see, well, oh, that was just, Somebody just threw that random number, not knowing what that number means.
And that could be a
lot. Exactly. And that's one of the reasons I asked this question, because there will be communication coaches out there that focus way too much on the delivery of the message and less on the content of the message. We need both. We need both. We can't have, you know all style. And no substance because if that were the case, Ryan, CNN wouldn't have you back.
I'm a big believer that content will speak for itself and maybe I do it the harder way, but I feel like yelling and shouting isn't a thing that you should do. I think the content will, but you know, it works for different people have different personalities and different things to work. And for me, I think over time, content will always win.
And people will be able to tell. And I hope that's
the case. It is a hundred percent the case. And, you know, we have these smooth operators who are so good at talking, who talk a pretty talk, and there's really nothing new in what we're listening, in what we're hearing. That's not one way to get called back hundreds and hundreds of times for on air segments.
You, you touched upon it very briefly, Ryan, let's go there. There's so much happening in the world today, the ethics of AI. Climate change, war, refugee crisis, you know, as someone who, who is in touch, you know, current affairs, and what would you say to that person who never reads the news because they find it depressing?
And the second part of this is the future. What are some of your hopes for our kids
generation? Well, I think you just said what what I focus on is that latter piece that there's opportunity that, you know, there's a lot of things I as an individual can't control of a lot of these big macro things, but I can't control where I see.
Well, here's a situation that we're in. How do we make it the best and give that opportunity to be able to make that change? And I think the next generation. you know, is dealt with the hand that is a little bit different and can be very difficult. But I also think that they're the generation that can make a lot of change.
And I think if we could be supportive of that, you know, and we're starting to see that when we think about the consumer rising, having a power stakeholder rising, right? It's that generation that speaking. Well, I want to be, I want to work for a company that has my values. This is, I mean, this is the generation that You know, starting their own company.
They want to change the things that are status quo. And I think, you know, to me, I, that's what I see in these headlines. I don't, yeah, yes, you know, I'm always hopeful of like, okay, here's this thing, but here's what's going to happen. Here's what's going to change now when that occurs. I'm not sure, but I think I'm hopeful around that.
You know, we're having this type of comfort. I mean, comfort, you know, conversations around sustainability that we've never had this quickly. It's the word how we use technology more efficiently. You know, there's always there's always pluses and minuses to all this. And so I'm just hopeful of the things that you can control.
You know, how do you use it for impact and and to be more accessible. Like you said that we are in a digital world that You know, someone could be watching this around the world of different places that could never had this and could be impactful. And so we, those little things do matter. And I think that, you know, those who are looking at headlines that are like, Oh, this is such a downer research about the things that can be done, the research about the things, what we learn from it.
So we don't put ourselves in those kinds of situations again. I think that to me is the opportunity to be able to not make the same mistakes.
Yeah, no, I, I, I totally hear you on that. Beautiful. Beautiful. Ryan, the time's absolutely flown. I can't believe we've come to the end. And this particular question is asked to every single guest of mine.
When you look back, Ryan, on all these years, your entire career, so many things you've done. Is there one standout defining moment that supercharged your career and helped you to move closer to your current success?
I mean, to say that what I'm doing right now was something that I knew that I was going to do is an absolute lie because I had no idea, you know, you take a person that's been corporate for so long and, and, and to do this, you know, it, it, it, there's probably a couple, I mean, I feel like I'm always learning new moments now that I'm always meeting some great people, but I think to do what I'm doing and be this comfortable, it has to be my wife.
She was the one who really pushed eventually and said, Hey, if you're going to do this. Do it. Like don't be you be confident. And most people go, Oh, you must be always a confident person. No, it's kind of scary when you do things that is different. And I struggle with that and she was so calm, you know, most people would be like, you know, what does your husband do?
Or what do they, what does he do? And she didn't care. And I think when you have that kind of confidence around you, like, Hey, we, I know that you're on a path of, of something that you want to do that is impactful. And I think that's led to all these different opportunities. I also think that I'm not done.
I think there's a lot of other opportunities that I don't think that come to my way that people don't put and I feel like, like you said, you mentioned, there's always something new everything that I'm working on or there's something different that I didn't know that I could do. I feel like there's a lot of that stuff still left for me to do.
And that's what keeps me driving and striving to be able to do that. And so, you know, for either if it's yeah. Campaign stuff that I never knew I could do, or speaking at big stages from, you know, World Economic Forum to The Economist, all these other places that I never knew that I would have these opportunities.
I feel like I can be impactful, and I think that belief from her that It's okay. You know, when you make a bet, when you lose, when you make a bet on yourself and you choose not to take money things and you choose to do it this way, you learn real quickly that, you know, you're, you're trying to do the things that you are passionate about or, and or you feel it was the right thing to do.
And you know, when you have someone like that believing in you wholeheartedly that you can tell most normal people that go back and do a regular job, you know you know, it speaks volumes and, and, and, and that. Was a moment for me to realize that there is something here. I should just focus my time and really energy and do it the right way.
And so I think this is what leads to this. You know, I think in anything, anything that you do, I always feel like, you know, you always got to keep getting better. You never know when it's, you know, you never know if you lose your job or you're going to stop doing what you're doing. I think that's something that, you know, you can't be fearful of, but be mindful of.
And that's what keeps you keeps you driving.
Yeah. Beautiful. It sounds like you picked a good one, Ryan, because it's, you know I've, I've always felt that. I think I'm not sure if it's Warren Buffett or who said that 90 percent of your career success comes down to who you decide. To pick to spend the rest of your life with because in a positive or in a negative way.
And it doesn't have to be only in the romantic sense, right? It's what I'm taking away from you is every time you pushed up, it was like a new level, new devil, as they say. And it helps to have that one person who believes in you and like, Oh, that's new.
She, she, and she's the entrepreneur type. Like she's, it hasn't been this, I mean, you could just, you know, she might, you know, again, it's about opportunity.
Sometimes we don't get them in our careers and I feel like, and you probably have heard it now, I don't see, you know, but you get opportunities that are put to you and you do the best that you can. And I think that that's, we learn from that and you learn from each other. And, you know, I think also you have great different types of people around you, not just your partner.
You can have, you know, a personal board of advisors that you kind of go to that are different that. Can it, you know that I have done to am I, am I on the right path? Should I be doing this? Should I be, you know, usually I'm asking around, does anybody know this? You know, is this, is this a place I should be at?
Because you don't know, right? You just don't know all these things. And I think when you can create a environment like that around people who know all the different things that know more than you do, it becomes really easier to be able to be like yourself, to be present.
Love that. Love that. All right, Ryan.
Fantastic. I'm gonna link your LinkedIn profile in our show notes so our fabulous listener can follow you and support your work and learn so much from you. Ryan, this has been such a pleasure. Thank you so much for your time today and I wish you continued success in all the things you choose to do.
Well, thank you for having me.
Keep up the great work and thanks, thanks to the audience for, for listening.