Jeremy Grantham didn’t start out with $100 billion or so in assets under management. And he didn’t start out with experience. He had something else: expertise.
Expertise and experience, aren’t the same thing, notes Ben Carlson in a Wealth of Common Sense.
The two qualities are in an eternal battle — which is likely to intensify. Baby boomers aren’t giving up their perches so easily and the millennials — an even bigger cohort than the boomers — are pouring into the work force over the next decade. Even before that, Carlson says he struggle with how to get his ideas across to his seniors. Some years ago, he had the opportunity to meet the legendary investor Jeremy Grantham, who kindly offered some insights:
To paraphrase, he said, “To create change in a financial firm as a young person you must back up all of your opinions with thoroughly researched evidence and data. And even then most of the higher-ups won’t listen to you. In that case, do what I did and start your own firm or try to find like-minded peers to work with because most people in this industry will never change their minds because of ignorance or career risk.”
Sounds like words for the ages.
Carlson adds that the the next generation has much to offer — especially given the quickening pace of change in technology. All those years behind a desk won’t give the old guard that expertise.