Does Loudness Equate To Greatness? Discovering What True Leaders Are With Ankit Mahadevia
We all have encountered leaders, all with their own approaches and dynamics with the team. But what does it really take to be a great leader? Is it enough for a goal to just be achieved? Does a loud leader equate to greatness? In this episode, Tony Martignetti is joined by speaker, author, and CEO of Spero Therapeutics, Ankit Mahadevia. Ankit tells us his journey on how he made such a huge impact in the medical industry and how great leaders are truly made. Tune in and learn from the gold nuggets in this conversation on what makes a true leader and how you can become an effective leader of something great as well!
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Does Loudness Equate To Greatness? Discovering What True Leaders Are With Ankit Mahadevia
It is my honor to introduce you to my guest in this episode, Ankit Mahadevia. He is an entrepreneur, a CEO, a speaker, and an author. He has cofounded nine biotech companies, including Spero Therapeutics, where he currently serves as a CEO. He has raised over $1 billion for the development of novel therapeutics and built multiple high-performing management teams.
Ankit was named one of Glassdoor's Top 50 CEOs for 2021. He is the author of, Quiet Leader, Loud Results and has spoken widely on leadership, including at Harvard University, Columbia University, Northwestern University, and the Berkeley Forum. He lives in Chestnut Hill with his wife and two boys. It is my pleasure to welcome you to the show, Ankit.
Thank you, Tony.
I'm looking forward to uncovering your story as we do on the show. What we do is take people on a journey of understanding how did this amazing person show up in the world and create such a great impact? As often happens, there are humble beginnings. We need to follow the flashpoints. The points in your journey that have ignited your gifts into the world.
I'm looking forward to this. I truly loved your book, and it's one of those books that connect with a lot of people in the world. I'm going to turn it over to you in a moment to let you share what you are called to share. Along the way, we will pause and see what shows up. With that, what are the flash points that you are called to share?
For me, it starts from the very beginning. I'm the first kid born in our family in the US, and my parents came here in the '70s. My dad was an engineer by trade and was looking for graduate training in engineering. He got scholarship offers from two places. One was Berkeley, and the second was the University of Illinois at Champaign. Both are great programs. He didn't know how to choose, so he has a third cousin in Ohio at the time. He looks at the map and says, “That's close enough. I'm going to go to U of I.
That began our journey. It's why I was born and raised in Chicago and not in the Bay Area, for example. That's how I got my start. I was born and raised in the North side of Chicago until we moved out to the suburbs. For me, my desire to become CEO is a very recent phenomenon. Before that, I was interested in healthcare. The science appealed to me just the way that the body is put together in such an elegant way.
My parents never failed to bring out these drawings of the circulatory system I made when I was in the fourth grade, which was great. The other thing that was impactful for me was that my dad's brother is a physician. They are close, and I got a chance to witness what his work was like early on. For the longest time, I thought I was going to be a practicing physician. That's the way I geared myself up. Even to the point where when I went to college, I ended up choosing a college, Northwestern, that guaranteed me admission to med school so I would “get that out of the way.”
The second point that shaped my view was that, which is now that I felt like I was playing with “house money,” I decided to study things other than the medical sciences. I ended up studying Economics. For two reasons, I started to overlay what healthcare meant in the broader societal setting. One is that I had a great mentor who was a health economist at Northwestern, Burton Weisbrod, who, by the way, is in his mid-90s and is still putting out research.
Secondly, it was spending time with my uncle. This was right around the time that healthcare reform was coming to a head. I understood that it's one thing to try to see your patients, but you have to overlay it on the broader system. That's what started me to think about that. Finally, the college opened me up to a whole variety of different opportunities that weren't seeing patients and realizing that once you start training in medicine, you don't stop. For a while, I began thinking about different things.
I was resolved that I was going to take a few years away from training and decided to become a management consultant because that's what people do if they don't know what they want to do or are trying to learn as much as possible in a limited time but the economy had different plans. This was one of the recessions in 2001, and my offer got deferred. I ended up on Capitol Hill, thanks to my mentor and some of the connections he had.
I first started learning how to affect Medicare policy reform through the Government Accountability Office. I went into consulting after the economy got a little bit better. It was at that point that I had to make a decision. I enjoyed doing something other than medicine but that was a lifelong dream. If I didn't do it now, it would probably be harder for me to do it later. I ultimately decided to do it. The other thing that I decided is if I'm playing with house money, I might as well see other parts of the country.
I looked at other programs, and my girlfriend at the time, now my wife, was working for a US Senator in the Chicago area. The DC area seemed to make sense because she could work there as well. I ended up at Johns Hopkins, and there, I got into it and enjoyed it. It was everything that I thought it would be, and the nice thing about Hopkins is that they throw you in the pool. A minimum of classroom work, and then they throw you in. I love that.
At the same time, there was this point of view in my mind that I like everything. I liked the economic point of view. I liked having had some business experience, and I wasn't sure because the training felt like a very long time that it was what I wanted to do right away. I took a long time in my training and probably frustrated my dean to no end. I did a little bit of everything. I worked back on Capitol Hill. I worked for the Kennedy staff. I worked for McKinsey and then for a leveraged buyout firm. I went to Genentech and learned how to do business development deals.
I squeezed in an MBA at Penn as well. Over time, my dean called me up and said, “It sounds like you have been having fun but are you going to be a doctor? I got to give this spot to someone.” I said, “Sure. Fine.” I ended up finishing up med school and was all set to do an internship and, ultimately, be an ophthalmologist. You can look me up. I've published in Ophthalmology. One of the reasons is that you get to do a little bit of everything.
Again, you can be the eyes immunologist, oncologist, surgeon, and physician. You don't have to choose, which I had a hard time doing. That's what I was set to do, and then come the summer of 2008, the folks at Atlas Venture gave me a call. One of the many odd jobs I had during medical school was starting a company. One of my mentors at med school was also a venture partner at a VC firm that's no longer around called Interwest.
He had invented a therapy for neuropathic pain and patented it. He got $10 million to go do it. I was the only “biotech” person that he knew. He drafted me in to do this. It was based on that I was interested in the idea of entrepreneurship. When the Atlas folks called, I figured I would take six months to try that out and then fell in love with the idea of building companies. What I thought was six months has now been many years on and nine companies later. I didn't, growing up, think that I wanted to run a company or even start a company. I thought that I would be by the bedside helping people.
What ultimately appealed to me about this was a couple of things. One is that I love the idea of watching team dynamics happen. Either as an observer or as a driver, watching how people interact. I'm introverted by nature, so I do a lot of watching and listening. Watching how people play their parts in team dynamics is fascinating to me. Secondly, is that my struggle was that clinical medicine is still something I miss because you can change someone's life when you are in that exam room or OR with them but you are also missing that opportunity to have a broad impact.
The idea of starting a company or developing therapeutics, you can help sometimes millions of people at a time. That impact was pretty intoxicating as well as the general idea of building things. I found about myself is that I like building things, even for hobbies. During the pandemic, I renovated five rooms in the house, and it drove my wife nuts. The idea of making something where there wasn't something before appeals to me viscerally.
The idea of building organizations was part of it. I love to take this wherever you want, Tony, but that's me and maybe how I got here. That's not where the story ends. Certainly, even then, I had no idea or no design for being a CEO. It's something that as the companies I was founding grew, it's what they needed, and then over time, I figured out I liked it. That was that.
I love that you shared this. A lot of this is keeping your options open until you start finding the thing that lights you up. The early experiences you shared, I wouldn't say it was listless but you moved around in different pockets and they all worked for you but it was about keeping your options open and feeling into different fields that worked. Eventually, finding yourself in this place of making an impact in biotech and then seeing that it brings together so many great things about who you are in building teams, creating impact, and having that sense of being able to impact patients in a bigger way.
One of the things about getting into that startup mode and getting into, especially, a CEO role is this sense of amplifying the team's abilities. I would love to hear your thoughts about that because stepping into leadership is about amplifying people's contributions in a way that allows something big to happen. I would love to hear if that resonates with you in any way, shape or form.
Tony, it resonates greatly. Here at Spero, we talk a lot about that as we think about the people who are on track for broader leadership here at the company or otherwise. That concept of force multiplication is really important. Over the companies that I have been involved with building, you hit this interesting turning point when you have this critical mass of what we call force multipliers. These are folks that put the company's mission first, who are good at what they have been brought to do but also are unafraid to try to make contributions elsewhere. These force multipliers also have inherently good EQ, and they take this other focus and make people feel that they genuinely are allies.
There are certain examples. We have folks here at Spero, and otherwise, whether you report to them or not, people seem to end up at their desks or in their offices trying to seek their advice because they are thoughtful and valuable. They have the company's best interest at heart. There are all these little telltale signs of force multipliers, and that's one. The other is instinctually. People tend to give these force multipliers more and more things to do and important things to do. You may not even realize it. You don't say, “This person is a force multiplier, so I better give them this important project. You are drawn to give these people some important things to do or they are drawn to take them.
I would like to find out more about who are the people who have believed in you along this journey that you have been on. It looks like you're a strong believer in people, and when you believe in people, they rise to that occasion. What I would love to know is who are the people who have brought out the best of who you are.
That list is very long, Tony. My apologies if I'm not mentioning them by name. Being in leadership is an inexact science, and expertise comes from reps and feedback. It's getting into the pool, trying what you think works, and having people around you who are willing to tell you quickly after you try something, whether it worked or not, and then refining it. I have been so blessed over this decade and a half that there have been people every step of the way who've enabled me to go out and try stuff. Screw up, fix it, and do better next time.
Being in leadership is an inexact science, and expertise comes just from reps and feedback.
I would give a lot of credit to the folks at Atlas, who gave me a lot of rope to explore what I want to explore. Also, the work needed to do give me the opportunity to be a leader, even when I probably didn't have any business doing so, have the forgiveness to help me fix it when I screwed up, and have the foresight to put myself in positions where I could be successful in the future. Ultimately, they have supported me for the long haul across many of the companies I've built.
Peter Barrett, Bruce Booth, Jean-François Formela, and Dave Grayzel, in particular. I would credit them for both giving me a chance to learn myself and giving me hard feedback when I did it wrong and how I fixed it. I would also give Garrett Sparrow, my board, and everyone to a person but especially my Chairman, Milind Deshpande, who was a CEO in his own right but gave me the latitude to lead in a style that was authentic to me. He was also there to guide me and give me the tools I needed to be successful.
Also, my teammates at Spero, who all still are more experienced than me and had the humility and graciousness to let someone figure it out with them and the openness to give me feedback when it wasn't right. I think every day. You work as a leader. If you are doing it right, you are constantly thinking about what you can do better. This place, this concept, I believe in a lot of psychological safety.
I would say that here at Spero, both the board dynamic as well as team dynamic encourages the lot. As a leader, not just me but also the other leaders here at the company, it gives you the latitude to try something for the sake of the enterprise. The worst case is you screw up, and you are going to learn but the best case is you might be doing something a lot better than you did it before.
It's amazing what you share, and this is something I want to lean into around this idea that you have your own unique style of leadership, and everyone does. I call it the leadership fingerprint that we bring. The ability to, first of all, identify what that is and how it shows up but then also trust in it is important. Trusting in the fact that the way you are showing up is having an impact on other people. What I love to know is when did you identify as being this quiet leader that was having an impact on other people?
I detailed this in the book. I've known for a very long time that I'm on the introverted side of the spectrum. The a-ha moment for me as I was getting into my post-medical training career and evolving from, “This is a major weakness that I'm going to have to overcome,” to, “This is who I am, and I've got to use it as part of who I am.” It's an asset, not a liability. I worked on the problem. I knew I was an introvert.
When I first started dating, who's now my wife, I said, “Let's take an improv class.” “Why?” I felt like that would give me the training to speak out more when I'm typically willing to listen first and let things happen. I was a pretty crappy improv player. My wife was great. She got to the point where people bought tickets to see her perform because she's really good. I did not. It didn't work out so well. I always thought of it that way.
Early in my Atlas training, you can look me up from back then. I started my educational career early with a weird artifact of an old cutoff date. I'm probably a couple of years younger than my educational training would've suggested when I was coming out of school. I didn't have much experience. I looked pretty damn young. Hopefully, I still do, but I am not as young as I used to be. All of that, on top of knowing that I was an introvert, Imposter syndrome hit me super hard.
One of the things you have to do when you are in the setting of investing or company building is you do what the companies that are being built need from you. Sometimes, what they need from you is more than you feel qualified to do. I spent a lot of time early on trying to compensate for being quiet. What it led to was this no man's land. Whereas an introvert, it's hard to fake “being extroverted” in the stereotypical sense, number one.
Number two, people know. People have a good attuned sense of whether you are actually who you say you are. There was some aspect of that that came out in the commentary, and people were thoughtful of their feedback. Those sayings, “Play your card close to the vest,” and those things were code for, “We don't know who you are.” Over time, people hit you between the eyes with that, and you realize, A) It's exhausting to try to pretend you are an extrovert when you are not. B) It's not working, and C) If you are here for the right reasons, which is to build something important to help patients, you are not doing anything. You are not serving the people you are supposed to be serving.
I didn't have a plan and decided, “Let's try something different. Let's not do that anymore and be who you are and be open about it.” That began, and I would say it still continues is a lot of trial and error. A lot of scientific founders that I've worked with over the years knew who I am and gave me the latitude to be me. In return, I allow people to be themselves too. It's a very long answer to your question, “When did it start to click for me?” It was when I was starting to run a few other companies.
Spero is one that we had started. Synlogic Therapeutics, which is now being run by great CEO Aoife Brennan, is another one. Finally, Rodin Therapeutics, which sold to Alkermes. It was at that time when we had built three management teams, each with its own C team. It had a board coming in place, including independents. Each 1 of those 3 had partnerships, and I felt like it's that feeling of flow that they talk about when you spend a third of your time and a lot of time in these senior management meetings and are making stuff happen.
You watch this culture evolve and realize, “This style seems to be working. Sometimes, the proof is in the pudding. We got our objectives done and convinced people outside of the company to invest money and/or their time and their careers with us. You say, “Maybe people are buying what you are selling, and it's starting to work.”
That's the point where I said, “I've got a template that works for me.” As I started to pair some of that back and focus full-time on Spero, I started to refine it. As the company scaled, all three of the companies were between 20 and 40-ish people when I started to make that transition. Spero has grown since then. It's helped me refine it with some thoughtful feedback from my partners on my executive team as well as my mentors on the board.
Here's a lesson that I'm pulling away from all of what you shared, which is the sense of many people coming into their roles feeling like they have to be something else but when you start out, it takes so much energy trying to be someone else. When you let go of all of that, you say, “I'm going to try and be me as much as I can. There are going to be times when that's not going to necessarily resonate with everyone but that's okay. Eventually, it's going to click and start to take on the form of making an impact on the people around me.
When it does, I don't have to extend a lot of energy to be me. You will get into that flow state, as you said. That's well said to the extent that when we are using that overused term of being authentic and being real as we are, we are making more of an impact. We are creating more leverage through being ourselves as opposed to trying to be someone else and thinking that's going to make an impact. I don’t know if that resonates with you but it's what I'm connecting with your message about how I'm being myself.
Very much. It's hard enough to build a business and develop a drug, let alone do both. I found it to be a lot more fun if you are spending all of that energy on those hard questions rather than trying to build a mask or curate who you are and who you aren't with people.
It’s because as soon as that comes down, people see the real you and are like, “What happened?” I want to come back to the part of your journey. Where was there any moment when things didn't go according to plan, and you had to change course? Were there any moments where you were tested in a big way, and you thought, “It's time for me to change gears?”
There’s one seminal place where everything, as I was starting to build companies, was a progression. First, I supported building a company, and then over time, I was allowed to do some of these things solo as a leader. There was one particular opportunity, and this was in the muscular dystrophy space where we had built a relationship with a particular investigator or company that had built an alliance around the investigator.
This was prior to the capital market over the last few years. We had prewired and found a pharma partner who was willing to both capitalize and then create a path for a build-to-buy arrangement, which seemed to work. The goal was both to get the company going and the science rolling but also to find a marriage of three parties. One was the investors in the overall company. The second was the pharma company, and the third was the founders.
That was the first time that I was leading the group. Ultimately, that fell apart. In hindsight, it probably fell apart for the right reasons but in the short-term, these were very frequently accounted hurdles that new companies sometimes get through in terms of matching incentives and getting through some initial technical roadblocks but the team splintered. It was a group of folks that had signed up for this, and all decided they wanted to go somewhere else. As a leader, that sucks when people who decide to spend their time and career with you that you feel like, especially when you are early in your career, you are not worth it. “You did a bad job. Therefore, I'm leaving.”
As a leader, it sucks when people who choose to spend their time and career with you decide that you're just not worth following.
At that point, I had observed enough to know that these weren't the types of setbacks that make it obvious that people should be jumping ship. There's got to be something else going on. I took the time to understand and seek some thoughtful feedback from the folks that were deciding to make their decisions elsewhere. They told me a very hard and blunt version of what we had talked about, which is, “This wasn't easy, to begin with. We knew that but it was a lot about leadership, trust, mission, and reasons to believe.
I said, “I have the title but I'm not doing the job.” I sought to deconstruct what it meant to do something differently. The key realization I had was to let go of the energy I was spending, trying to bolster the fact that I should be there. It's the advice I give now to entrepreneurs that I counsel either onboard or advisory perspective is, “Whether or not you think you deserve to be there, you are there. You are the person.”
There's no other choice than to be you and whatever that means. Over time, you can try to be what “they want you to be,” but, A) People figure it out, and B) You won't do a great job in the meantime. If you are there, do what patients and the company need and be you. That was something when you were trying to prove yourself. It is a hard one because there's a part of you that, through the Atlas experience, you see all these experienced entrepreneurs walk in your halls and say, “Why me?”
The question is, “Why not you?” For me, that was liberating because then I said, “It probably can't go worse than what I did, so I don't have much to lose. Let's give something else a try.” You try it, and then you see that it works a little. You do a little more of this, and then you see something that doesn't work, and you do a little less of that. Over time, you get that feedback loop. I give a lot of credit to Atlas. The idea of building three companies at once gives you this huge set of signals with which to refine your leadership, and it was ten years of education in a very short time.
One of the things that are so interesting about this industry, in general, is the amount of resilience that you need to have to be able to persevere in the face of signals that are coming at you that you are on the wrong path or this is not working out scientifically or managerially. With all the things that are coming at you, the resistance is huge. Resilience is what's so important to learn. You can bounce back from those failures. You can bounce back from situations that are challenging. Would you agree with the resilience sense of what you have been able to learn from all these situations that you've faced?
I agree, and my observation is that there are two parts to resilience. One is that some part of you innately has to be wired to be resilient. There are different personality types but I also think that the culture, the system, and the leadership of a company can enhance that in a couple of ways. One of them goes back to your point earlier about being authentic. It's a lot easier to roll with the punches when one thing is constant, which is that the people you are working with are who they say they are.
It adds a whole level of entropy into the system if not only did things not work as planned but also if the people you work with aren't who they say they were. Oftentimes, in my observation, it's insurmountable because it's like, “I signed up for Plan A and to work for this team but neither the company nor the team is who they say they are, so what am I doing here?” The Spero experience has taught us a lot. We started with a particular lead program that's no longer our lead program. We’ve repurposed a second program that's also no longer our lead program, as an example.
We've had program failures along the way but we've still managed to both continue to build the pipeline, move forward, and build the business. The core of that goes to the culture and the trust that we've built over time by every day doing some version of what we said we would do. You do that over time, and that creates this space that helps us.
One example was we had an unfortunate regulatory setback with one of our programs, Tebipenem, where we couldn't get to an agreement with the agency about what it would take for approval, which led to a complete response letter and the need to shift from a commercial footprint to a development one, which meant we had to part ways with a lot of great Speros.
Four months later, we have been able to cement the future of Tebipenem and also the company by doing a partnership with Glaxo. Within that time, we had to keep the team on the ground focused. We had to have them pivot to a new set of objectives. We had to carefully consider our options and then execute what would've seemed improbable at the time, which is partnering with a program that obviously had a recent regulatory setback. I give credit to the resilience of the team and the fundamental trust we have built with each other over the years as the basis because there were some tough times and hard conversations. We were able to bring the company to a great spot, and I would credit a lot of what you were talking about.
First of all, the disease areas and the science you are going after, you are not talking about low-hanging fruit. You are talking about this as a challenging area to go after, and you are building a team that can weather those storms, that is willing to stick in the game for the long-term, the resilience. That is a testament to what you've built. It's amazing. I want to shift gears a little bit to some of the lessons you've learned about yourself in this journey that you haven't already shared. Maybe your insights around what you've learned about yourself.
I've learned a couple of things about myself. One is what fundamentally gets me up in the morning is two things. One is building things, and the second is watching what we've built have an impact on people. I have been fortunate in my career building companies that several of the medicines I've worked on have made it to patients. It's fun when you watch the football game and see one of the medicines you worked on being advertised, which is great. I know what wakes me up in the morning. Secondly, is that you were mentioning what's your core leadership fingerprint. For me, it's a couple of folds. One is mission orientation. The second is humility.
I believe that great things happen if you leave space for others to be great. Phenotypically, I don't like hearing about myself or talking about myself. I will be honest. It was super uncomfortable for me to hear you read my bio because I'm like, “I don't want to hear it. It's weird but I know that about me too. A core part of our culture here is that we try to make others around us great and share the credit. The final thing is that with all of that, though, I'm pretty impatient. I like to see things get done. We've done over the years a variety of these different personality profiles, and there are colors. Even though I'm an introvert, I'm pretty red. I like to get things done.
The unique stylistic experimentation for me is how are you quiet and not like to make it about you but then how do you drive people to get things done without standing on top of the table and pointing fingers and taking names? We figured it out in terms of trying to build those objectives into the overall system and bringing people on who also believe that we need to drive results on a certain timeline for patients.
Also, having empathy. What I expect of people is that they do everything in their power to bring something home. We are an enterprise that tries to corral something unpredictable, which is science, and do it in an environment that's unpredictable, which is the capital markets. There are things that you have to be humble enough to know that is beyond your control but when you focus on what you can control, that's what I expect.
There's something about what you shared, which comes back to the title of your book, which is in some ways a little bit maybe uncomfortable for you, Quiet Leader, Loud Results. The loud results are something that leans into the red that you are but the reality is you don't want to have that necessarily strong visceral reaction that people do get results through being loud. It's a paradox, and there's a sense of, “You don't have to be loud to get results. You can be a quiet leader and be so impactful,” and truly, you've demonstrated that.
One of the a-ha moments was that the difference is that timelines and trying to deliver on your objectives aren't about you. Whether the objectives are there doesn't mean anything about you. It's about the enterprise and what it's set out to do. There's a fundamental difference there. The tendency when you get activated by missed timelines, it's because it's become about you rather than the project. To the largest extent possible, we try to keep it out of that and keep it focused on what it is, which is that patients are waiting.
I'm going to shift gears to our last question. In the interest of time, I couldn't talk to you all day about this stuff. The last question is, what are 1 or 2 books that have had an impact on you and why?
We could do a whole another episode on this but I will maybe pick a couple that was helpful. One is Susan Cain's book, Quiet because she's one of the first ones to both scientifically and from a sociological perspective, walk through how introversion plays through our society. It was one of the inspirations for Quiet Leader, Loud Results because we tried to pick up where that left off, which is how you apply those principles to leadership in an organizational sense. That was an important one that codified a lot of intuition that I had built over time.
The second one, and there's some recency bias here. I would say, Thinking, Fast and Slow by Kahneman. It’s only maybe because I read it again. There’s a lot in there about how to make thoughtful decisions because that's the other aspect of leadership that is pretty core, along with being inspirational and trying to find the right people, the other thing a leader must do is be very efficient about how an organization makes decisions. Well-intentioned people can screw a lot up if they either don't make a decision or they've set up an architecture that lends itself to the biases that Kahneman talks about.
A leader must be very efficient in how an organization makes decisions.
I love what you shared because both of those books are high on my list as one of my favorites. In fact, I'm a huge fan of Susan's new book, Bittersweet, which I know takes things from a different angle but as an artist at the core, I love how she taps into this power of art. Anyways, I digress. Great insights. I love what you shared about them, and I can't thank you enough for coming to the show.
Everything you shared has been powerful, and it's going to connect with the people who can get the sense that you don't have to lead the way that we have in the past. Being yourself is what's most important when you want to lead people forward. That connecting to that unique fingerprint of how you are as a leader is important. I can't thank you enough for coming on. Before I let you go, I want to make sure that people know where they can find out more about you. Where's the best place to find you?
The best place to find me is at our website, QuietLeader.com. You can find out more about the book and more about my bio.
Thank you again, and thanks to readers for coming on the journey. I know you are leading with many great insights. Go by this book. It's so fantastic.
Thanks a lot, Tony. It was a lot of fun.
- Spero Therapeutics
- Atlas Venture
- Quiet Leader, Loud Results
- Synlogic Therapeutics
- Thinking, Fast and Slow
About Ankit Mahadevia
Ankit Mahadevia is an entrepreneur, CEO, speaker, and author. He has co-founded nine biotechnology companies, including Spero Therapeutics, where he currently serves as CEO. He has raised over $1 billion for the development of novel therapeutics and built multiple high-performing management teams. Ankit was named one of Glassdoor’s “Top 50 CEOs of 2021” (#15 nationwide). He is the author of Quiet Leader, Loud Results and has spoken widely on leadership, including at Harvard University, Columbia University, Northwestern University, and the Berkeley Forum.
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