Sanjay Ayer on the Business Brew

Good morning,

To help our investors and network hopefully gain a better understanding of what we are reading and listening to … in addition to our blog posts/book reviews, we will be sharing what we’ve listened to … distilled down into our key learnings.

The first podcast we are sharing is an interview with Sanjay Ayer on the Business Brew. Sanjay is a portfolio manager and business analyst at WCM Investment Management since 2007. WCM runs ~$120 Billion in assets out of Laguna Beach, California.

We hope you find something interesting,


Focusing on the right things: What percent of the time in this profession goes towards one of the following two things?

  • Minimising career risk

  • Sounding smart

Trying to make money: If you trying to make money all of the time, you’re less likely to over time

Learning: If you’re not cringing at the work you did five years ago … your probably not getting better

Reflection week: Have a reflection week twice a year – turn off all screens and just reflect

Leaders: Have set a tone from the top to show mistakes and be vulnerable

Specialists: Weaponize information – try to make sure we’ve got a general coverage – everyone is reasonable across most things

New ideas: There are few things as dangerous as an analyst with an initiation report and three expert calls

Generalists and patterns: Seeing the patterns across industries is what a generalist can do that a specialist will have difficulty doing

Adaptable cultures: As an analyst – the question shouldn’t be, how is this company going to be hurt by this or that technology? It should be – does the company have an adaptable culture to change with technology?

Thesis: Your thesis needs to evolve as the company evolves

What makes a great investor: Requires a set of qualities that are opposing at face value – for instance – you need to be disciplined and you need to be flexible, you need to have conviction but also embrace cognitive dissonance, you need to be able to focus and you need to be able to multitask … and you need to have grit – work ethic and perseverance … you need to have creativity