Geoff Colvin

What can’t machines replace? Empathy, creativity, and compassion—in short, humanity.

Senior Editor-at-Large for Fortune Magazine

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Geoff Colvin | Senior Editor-at-Large for Fortune Magazine

Geoff Colvin is an award-winning thinker, author, broadcaster, and speaker on today’s most significant business trends. His brand-new and already-acclaimed book, Humans Are Underrated, looks at how machines are becoming more and more competent—and as a result, how irreplaceable, interpersonal human skills are becoming more crucial than ever before. 

As a longtime editor and columnist for Fortune, Colvin has become one of America’s sharpest and most respected commentators on leadership, globalization, wealth creation, and the info-tech revolution. As a speaker, Colvin has engaged hundreds of audiences around the world, ranging in size from 10 to 10,000. Audiences especially appreciate his remarkable perspective: He has analyzed companies and business leaders worldwide as they confront the largest issues of our time, and has seen what distinguishes the winners from the losers.


“Beautifully written and deeply researched, Humans Are Underrated is one of the most creative and insightful leadership books I have ever read. It is a triumph!”

— Doris Kearns Goodwin, Pulitzer Prize–winning historian

Colvin is also the author of The Upside of the Downturn, an guide to business management during a recession, and Angel Customers & Demon Customers, the book that launched today's mushrooming interest in customer-centricity. His latest book is a follow-up to his groundbreaking bestseller Talent is Overrated, which looks at the factors which separate world-class performers from everyone else. As the former 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.    

Speech Topics

Corporate Culture
Humans Are Underrated
It’s no longer the stuff of speculation or science fiction—machines are entering the workplace in record numbers, replacing human labour in the process. It’s a trend that will only increase, so what should we be doing about it? In this talk, based on his book Humans are Underrated, Colvin argues that we shouldn’t compete with computers on tasks they excel at—we’ll lose that battle—but instead, focus on qualities they’re incapable of. Empathy, creativity, sensitivity and relationship-building are all key components of any successful organization, and they’re essences that can’t be programmed, wired or calculated: they’re unique to us, and us alone. Colvin's talk explores how focusing on human qualities not only ensures our survival in a computer-dominated workplace, but also makes businesses more relatable, accessible, and successful in the long run.