Author: Michele Wucker

Michele Wucker is a policy and business strategist and author of four books including YOU ARE WHAT YOU RISK: The New Art and Science of Navigating an Uncertain World and the global bestseller THE GRAY RHINO: How to Recognize and Act on the Obvious Dangers We Ignore. Read more about her at https://www.thegrayrhino.com/about/michelewucker

Riding a liquidity fueled mega-rally, the S&P 500 is back comfortably above 3000, having recovered more than 70 percent of what it lost earlier in the year. Some of that bump comes from Americans who put their stimulus checks to use by day trading. If this does not worry you, it should. The money that is going into the stock market simply is inflating paper profits instead of shoring up a fragile economy where joblessness and the sharp drop-off in economic activity make the Great Depression look like a stroll in the park. The market bubble is worsening the economic divide between the…

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Author Michele Wucker coined the term “grey rhino” for a highly probable, high-impact yet neglected threat. In this episode of the Crain’s Daily Gist podcast, she talks with host Amy Guth about how grey rhinos could shape economic recovery, the practical decisions we’re going to need to make over the coming weeks and months and what helps us to bounce back quickly. Listen HERE

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I wrote some ways back about the launch of Inclusion Meeting Cards, a project from the Chicago based software development company Table XI. The game is a simple, tangible, non-confrontational tool for reorienting discussion, using humor to defuse potentially tense interactions like telling someone to stop interrupting. It’s a super way to help teams to make better decisions by getting a variety of voices around the table, thus avoiding groupthink and making room for important perspectives you might otherwise miss. But amid the novel coronavirus pandemic, all of our meetings have moved online. So I could not have been more delighted when the team…

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How often do you or those around you recognize that a problem exists but come up with any number of excuses to avoid fixing it? This sort of kicking the can down the road is a hallmark of the second stage of the evolution of an obvious, high-probability gray rhino crisis: muddling. (Read this recent article for more on the five stages, which are detailed in depth in my 2016 book, THE GRAY RHINO: How to Recognize and Act on the Obvious Dangers We Ignore.) Inequality is a prime example of muddling. Yes, people are aware of the problem. The French economist Thomas Piketty’s 2013…

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Will the COVID-19 pandemic make it easier or harder to combat climate change? Many articles have appeared in recent weeks both comparing the coronavirus response to how people have dealt with climate change –two giant, obvious “gray rhino” crises– and tying the coronavirus reaction to the need for a more aggressive climate action plan. I was happy to share my thoughts on the links between climate change and the novel coronavirus crisis with Amy Harder of Axios, Laura Paddison of the Huffington Post, and Beth Gardiner of Yale e360 and Granta But these questions are lingering. So I want to address them in more detail here. …

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Gayatri Sarkar, founder and host of She-VC, a storytelling platform for women VC, investors and LP, interviewed eminent policy expert Michele Wucker March 27, 2020 in a live webinar. Michele Wucker coined the term “gray rhino” to draw attention to the obvious risks that are neglected despite – indeed, often because of- their size and likelihood. Watch on YouTube or below. https://youtu.be/LAUXXYzQ1KU QUESTIONS: 1. Is the Coronavirus pandemic a Black Swan or gray rhino? What is a “meta” gray rhino? 2. In this crisis we realized that most of our current policy leaders are clueless. What should they do in…

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If the nobody-could-have-seen-it-coming black swan metaphor was the narrative of the 2008 market meltdown, the highly probable, obvious “gray rhino” metaphor tells the story of the crisis we are in today. Amid the double calamities of the COVID-19 pandemic and market meltdown, both of which followed repeated public warnings that went ignored, the gray rhino has struck a chord and generated a flood of headlines around the world. Crisis Response Journal recently called the gray rhino “A metaphor for our times.” The UK financial magazine, New Model Advisor, made the gray rhino the cover story of its new issue, relegating the black swan…

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New Model Adviser, a publication of CityWire in the United Kingdom, featured gray rhino theory on the cover of its March 2020 issue, entitled “The Signs Were There.” The issue features an interview with Gray Rhino & Company CEO Michele Wucker. “COVID-19 was not unexpected. In fact, it is an example of a Gray Rhino event. The economist who coined the term tells editor WILLIAM ROBINS why we should have seen the pandemic charging at us from a mile away.” Read the full article HERE.

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