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AI in the workplace: time to ‘get in the game or watch from the side-lines’

In today’s rapidly evolving tech landscape, embracing innovation is paramount for success. CEOs at companies like Learnosity have witnessed AI’s game-changing impact first hand. Despite initial hesitations, seizing AI’s potential is crucial for business leaders. Learnosity prioritises responsible AI adoption, empowering teams for efficiency and growth.

As the CEO of a company built on emerging technologies, I understand the power of using cutting-edge tools to improve outputs.

Being innovators has always been part of Learnosity’s DNA. We’re a community of proud nerds, so when AI really started to take off, there was one prevailing feeling within the team: excitement.

But not every workplace seems to share our enthusiasm. According to a recent study from Blackberry, three-quarters (75%) of IT decision-makers were considering or implementing bans on ChatGPT in the workplace.

Major change always provokes concern. Even calculators in the classroom were controversial once upon a time.

To me, this resistance to change is the opposite of innovation and points towards short-sighted decision-making.

Of course, I understand the resistance of many companies to endorse the adoption of AI within their day-to-day. As with anything new, it can feel daunting.

I’ve always been more optimistic about the possibilities offered by technology and I believe AI is a force for good. As a result, I want to encourage my people to embrace it, learn from it, and gain from it.

The speed and complexity of our work at Learnosity means we need to adopt advanced technology and new tools quickly, particularly those powered by artificial intelligence, so we can stay ahead of the curve on emerging tech and keep delivering the best possible value for our clients.

To my fellow business leaders, I say this: let your people embrace the possibilities AI brings.

Sam Altman shared an insight on this topic that really struck a chord with me—and yes, I’m aware of the irony of quoting the CEO of OpenAI, but it feels appropriate here: “don’t fight the business equivalent of the laws of physics.” When it comes to the adoption of AI, my advice is to not swim against the tide.

There is also a reality to be faced, and let’s be real here, your employees are going to use AI.  One recent survey found that 68% of people who use AI at work don’t inform their bosses that they’re using it.

The genie is well and truly out of the bottle. So, if my staff is going to use AI anyway, I’d like them to at least use it responsibly.

Guardrails are essential, of course, to make sure sensitive data is protected—which is why we’ve created an internal AI policy that must be followed—but AI has the potential to enhance productivity, accuracy, and, ultimately, the results delivered.

Those still sitting on the fence when it comes to AI usage should keep in mind that the rest of us are already honing our AI skills.

While still in its relative infancy in terms of mass adoption, it does feel like we’re entering a  ‘get in the game or watch from the side-lines’ phase – particularly from a business POV.

From a business leadership point of view, it’s vital to remember that technology is only as good as the people using it. We have a bunch of hardworking people here whose jobs could be made easier by AI and whose output could be dramatically increased.

Seems like a win-win scenario to me.

Importantly, by encouraging my team to use AI at work, I’m showing them I trust them enough to use this powerful tool responsibly.

 With this in mind, I’ve put together some of my top tips for AI adoption in the workplace:

  • Be open-minded and look for where gains can be made by embracing change
  • Empower your teams to find appropriate tools for their job role and act quickly to review and approve (if suitable)
  • Share an approved list of AI tools with employees and encourage them to experiment
  • Own your data. Remind employees to use common and that they’re responsible for the output – don’t blindly copy and paste sensitive information

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