Areas of Expertise
Leadership • Finance • Exponential Organizations • Entrepreneurship • Disruption • Design Thinking • Customer Experience • Corporate Innovation
Greg Larkin has been fired, embraced, mocked, and celebrated. Along the way, he’s also built some of the most transformative products of our time for some of the biggest companies on Earth, including Google, Bloomberg, Nestle and PWC.
Greg’s wired a little differently. He’s as comfortable in a Fortune 100 boardroom as in a scrappy startup office. He’s as much a dad who remembers birthdays as a bold entrepreneur with a track record of speaking truth to power.
It is precisely this alternative wiring that has enabled him to create some astounding breakthroughs for his clients and audiences.
In 2006, Greg was the first person to predict the looming subprime mortgage crisis (Seriously. The first.) This big call propelled his startup, Innovest, to a $17mn exit in 2009.
Later, as Head of Innovation at Bloomberg, Greg built the first AI-backed platform to forecast how congressional legislation would impact the stock market.
He’s launched 33 products across the Fortune 100 and in startups. The ones that worked possessed the following characteristics.
Great products have a monopoly on courage – Every successful product starts with someone breaking an unbreakable rule or taking on a seemingly invincible power. Technology and strategy are dormant assets without courage.
Exponential Innovation starts with a coalition of polar opposites – The greatest innovation includes people who don’t seem to belong together. In a large corporation this usually is a powerful executive in total solidarity with someone who won’t hide their neck tattoo.
Entrepreneurs solve urgent problems. Wannapreneurs avoid them – Powerful tools like the blockchain and AI become shiny toys when they aren’t directed at a critical problem. Entrepreneurs embrace the urgent.
Big money is a byproduct of good karma – Billion-dollar breakthroughs start with good people being selflessly of service. Great innovation requires a positive karma bank account. The money will follow.
Greg helps huge companies build epic breakthroughs. Besides being the founder of Bowery 315, he teaches product innovation at Columbia Business School, is a senior advisor at the Goldman Sachs-spin-off Streetlinx, and the best-selling author of “This Might Get me Fired.”
His favorite album of all time is Lust For Life by Iggy Pop, and he has two beautiful children, Max, and Rose.
The Fast Eat The Slow
Creating a Culture of Speed In a Huge Company
Speed Matters Now More Than Ever
We live in the age of disruption. New entrants steal market share from entrenched incumbents at an unprecedented rate. There are no barriers to entry anymore. Every company’s most loyal customers are constantly lured away by better, cheaper, faster competitors that weren’t there a year ago.
In this talk, Greg Larkin brings you into the room where big companies set new speed records. You’ll learn how to enlist executive support, involve gatekeepers as co-creators, and catalyze exponential breakthroughs…in eight weeks.
Greg has been called “the Fortune 500’s Secret Weapon of Innovation.” He’s built some of the most transformative products of our time in a matter of weeks with Google, Bloomberg, PwC, Nestle and across the Fortune 500. In this session he’ll show us how.
The Wall of Can’t
The pressure of the disruption economy can be relentless. Yet anyone who’s ever tried to launch a new product in a big company will have inevitably gotten stuck. “It’s not compliant.” “it’s not on brand.” “It’s not in the 5 year plan.” Rapid acceleration often slows to a crawl. As if the age of disruption never happened. Innovation only takes root once a company is totally honest with themselves about how they get in their own way.
Acceleration Only Takes Root When There’s a High Cost of Going Slow
Every company has a problem that it needs to solve but can’t solve if it does what it’s always done. When sales disappoint, logistics break, and investors are furious – and it needs to be fixed now. These crises are fertile soil for exponential innovation to take root. The people, processes, and products which thrive during these crises often establish a “new normal” for innovation in their company.
The Activated Innovation Underground
In every company people constantly invent new ways to solve hard problems in record time. But very few of these people have the term ‘innovation’ in their job title – even though they innovate every day. A critical building block of creating a culture of speed is to celebrate ande elevate the talent that’s already innovating. Once a company’s hidden intrapreneurs become visible, executive leadership can support them and protect them from the obstructions that form the wall of can’t
Launch in Eight Weeks
What’s the most meaningful result you can achieve in eight weeks? What executive support do you need to make it real? And what results will validate that it’s working? When the mission is urgent, and the innovation community has executive support, the Wall of Can’t becomes porous and brittle. And the universe starts to notice.
Above all. Accelerated Innovation starts with courage. The courage to strive for what’s possible rather than what’s typical or acceptable. The courage to accept the very real risk of failure. The courage to build a community of speed when it’s never been part of the company’s DNA. Not everyone is a developer, or a billionaire entrepreneur. But we all have the ability to spark the courage that ignites exponential change.
The Godfather & The Secret Society: Inside the Intrapreneur Revolution
See all faculty