Making A Difference

Risk and Rewards

Adebayo Ogunlesi (MBA 1979)

Adebayo Ogunlesi (MBA 1979) is chairman and managing partner of Global Infrastructure Partners. In this interview he talks about the rewards of taking risks on unexpected opportunities.

“People often ask me, ‘What is the best advice you ever received in your life?’

“As long as you work hard and you study and do your best, you always have to be satisfied, because, no matter how smart you are, there's always going to be somebody who's smarter than you. No matter how tall you are, there's always going to be someone taller than you. No matter how rich you are, there's always going to somebody richer than you. You have to be happy with yourself and who you are and what you are.

“Opportunities are going to present themselves to you when you least expect them. And what you have to be willing to do is take risks. People are much too risk averse in their careers. Whenever an opportunity either presents itself or creates itself, you should be open to taking it.

“And I think one thing that I've tried hard to do is, when I see new opportunities that present an ability to learn something different, and to do something different, and to build something new, I hope I've always taken it. That's really what's accounted for the fact that I've done all these different things.”

(Published October 2017)