Speakers Contribution
My Learnings from the Epic Speaker Summit
My Learnings from the Epic Speaker Summit
By Tiago Forjaz
June 25, 2024
For years, as a headhunter, people asked me: how is the market?
Perhaps I didn’t understand the question, because for me each person is their own market. I thought: what does the current market matter to someone who wants to project their future and grow in future careers?
Joel Barker said, in his book, Paradigms – The Business of Discovering the Future: “We have gotten used to thinking of the future as the place where our security is taken away, where promises are broken, where rules change, causing a series of problems for all of us.”
But Barker also writes: “We can and should anticipate our future, because if we don’t, someone else will do it for us.”
In reality, we all know that the future is built in the present, in that intersection between the present and the past. We call it “the frontier.”

Today, as the founder of The Epic Talent Society, I understand that we all want to know which careers are growing and offer the opportunity for sustainable, continuous learning.

That is why we decided to celebrate our first year of existence by serving our community and organizing the Epic Speaker Summit 23.

We built an epic lineup of pioneering speakers on this frontier to highlight emerging careers and invite us to build our future.

In an attempt to share the wealth of learnings from the Epic Speaker Summit 23, I sought to write a brief paragraph on “what I learned” from each of them.

Note: For convenience, I decided to write my learning notes in two parts. You can read Part II here. 


Frontier Careers – Part 1 Frontier Careers : These are some of the careers that are growing and structuring themselves to prepare for the future.


Luís Rochartre Álvares – Sustainability – “Accelerate towards Regeneration”

It’s no longer enough to be “net zero” in terms of carbon emissions, we need to be “net positive” quickly! We can only make up for lost time by becoming net contributors rapidly! We can do this by redesigning our business models, which is faster and more impactful than focusing solely on combating product-level unsustainabilities. We are already aware, let’s move to action quickly! Find our more about Luís Rochartre.


Elói Gonçalves Pardal – Luxury – “The Future of Luxury is Diverse” “Luxury is not the opposite of poverty, but of vulgarity”

Coco Chanel. This phrase opened the lecture dedicated to luxury. Although the values of luxury are timeless, today luxury is predominantly Franco-Italian. However, there are many important luxury markets that prioritize local craftsmanship, just think of India and the South Asian markets. In Portugal, there is luxury in various markets (such as wine) but there is a real opportunity to leverage our multicultural history, based on trading posts, to contribute to a more diverse luxury in the world. Find out more about Elói Gonçalves Pardal.


Tiago Lopes Farias – Mobility and Cities – Access Cities – “Better Quality of Life through Smart Mobility”

Seventy percent of the world’s population lives in cities, so the battle for sustainability inevitably involves cities. But mobility is just a means to that end. To have a future on the planet, people must imagine and design cities where they would like to live, with an integrated approach that includes proximity, connectivity, and mobility, leveraged by a digital strategy. Only by working with citizens, in collaboration with experts in these areas, will it be possible to design sustainable future cities. Find out more about Tiago Farias.


Bernardo Caldas – Data & AI – “The Future with AI”

Now that artificial intelligence has arrived, is it the end? This is Bernardo’s provocative starting point. What should we think when the fathers of AI are divided in their perspectives? On one hand, Yoshua Bengio regrets the work of his life, while Yann LeCun considers it an exaggeration to fear the end of humanity and compares the emerging revolution to the industrial revolution. Bernardo suggests a different question: what would you do if you had unlimited time, resources, and capabilities? The speaker demonstrates how he has already used AI to help combat malaria in Angola, eliminate food waste, and even contribute to improving Portuguese democracy. In his opinion, no one has the authority to say what will happen with AI, but we all have to choose how to use it (for good or for ill). Find out more about Bernardo Caldas.


Ricardo Negrão – Cyber – “An Inevitable Business Risk”

Why should we worry about cyber risk? Cyber risk is not a technological concern; it is a business concern that should involve all managers. The goal is to protect the business from threats by reducing the impact. Therefore, it is essential to identify the business assets that need to be protected (knowing that you cannot protect everything) and create redundancy and contingency plans. Just as a seatbelt does not prevent accidents, the cyber strategy serves to protect business assets when (not if) a cyberattack occurs. I learned that cyberattacks are inevitable and “the keyword in cyber risk is risk.” Find out more about Ricardo Negrão.

I want to thank these pioneering speakers once again, who pointed out some frontier careers and helped us:

  1. Inspire and accelerate the transformation of company boards;
  2. Support people who want to transition to future careers through their mentorship;
  3. Support us and you in the recruitment processes for frontier roles.

Thank you for trusting us and structuring these lectures for everyone’s benefit.

You can read My Learnings from Epic Speaker Summit Part II here. 

Notice: What the speakers say and what we learn from them are not necessarily the same thing. It is inevitable that we make an evolution or conclusion of the content they share. What I share here are synthesized conclusions of what I learned, so I apologize to the speakers for any inconvenient or incorrect conclusions.

Epic Speaker Summit 23 – Highlights
Epic Speaker Summit 23 - Highlights
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