Aaron Erickson

Portfolio Director at ThoughtWorks

What do you do and why?

I am the west region Portfolio Director for ThoughtWorks, a global technology company helping companies achieve their most ambitious missions. Technology — when used for good, not evil — has fed billions of people, lifted billions out of poverty, and saved millions of lives. When technology’s used for ill purposes, however, it can do the opposite. I engage in this mission to advocate for the good use of technology over its evil use.

Additionally, I speak at a few conferences a year, and have authored a couple of books, including one on how to navigate the world of technology consulting.

What change would you like to enact in the world?

Generally, I would love to see an increase in empathy and a decrease in judgmental views of the world. Of course, in terms of technology, I would love to see more technologies that empower people — and fewer that exploit them. I would love to see a social media world in which the product is designed for the end user as its primary customer, rather than on in which users’ information is sold to advertisers as a revenue model. Generally, anything that promotes more hope-based decision making over fear.

Tell us a fun fact about yourself.

I have a 775-day streak learning Portuguese on DuoLingo, and over 1100 consecutive days logging my food on MyFitnessPal. Despite this, I totally promise I don’t suffer from OCD!

Why did you join IVY?

Personally, it was about making connections with people a bit outside my normal professional circles. I was new to SF, and one day, I woke up and realized that nearly all my friends here are current or former ThoughtWorks employees. I figured it was about time to change that.

I have not been disappointed, as I’ve had experiences — from bubble soccer to traveling in Peru to numerous thought leader conversations — that I would have not had anywhere else.

What has been your most memorable IVY Experience?

On a hike in Peru, one of my fellow hikers and I decided to make our way down early, ahead of the rest of the crowd. It was an exhausting hike (14 miles at 13,500 feet) — and though we got a bit lost (and, in retrospect, I would not recommend breaking away from the group) — I made a great connection with the person I got lost with and the rest of the group as a result!

To connect with Aaron Erickson and thousands of inspiring IVY members, 
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To connect with Aaron Erickson and thousands of inspiring IVY members, 
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