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Artificial Intelligence: the dos and don’ts

26 Jul 2018

Russ Shaw, founder of Tech London AdvocatesWith Artificial Intelligence set to revolutionise every aspect of commerce in coming years, Russ Shaw, founder of Tech London Advocates, offers business leaders five tips for embracing the robot revolution.

Do: Make AI a board issue

“With all major leaps forward in technology there are dire commercial consequences for getting it wrong and failing to adopt advancements when the time is right,” says Shaw. “Companies must be vigilant and, importantly, proactive with AI. Digital transformation requires leadership, action, and is driven from the top.”

Don’t: Go it alone

“The phrase ‘AI’ is frequently banded around and its disruptive potential has been well-documented. Yet there are relatively few people who fully understand this technology. In many cases it will not be appropriate for businesses to rely on in-house developers or coders to incorporate this tech – AI requires expertise.”

Do: Check out what other firms have done

“Business leaders must be ambitious and look to AI to elevate their organisations but should take a measured, realistic approach. There are fantastic examples of businesses using AI, especially within the recruitment and retail spaces – look at how other organisations have achieved success.”

Don’t: Lose the human touch

“Yes, AI is going to have a profound effect on the employment landscape and the distribution of labour across the wider economy, but people will remain at the heart of business. The private sector must be prepared to play an active role in upskilling and reskilling workers where AI disrupts. The creativity and ingenuity of the human workforce will continue to drive business growth.”

Do: Use AI to counteract human bias

“Under representation and a lack of gender diversity in the workplace continues to mean that companies are not realising the benefits of inclusivity. AI is only as a good as the data-sets on which it is based. It is important that businesses recognise biases in the data and act to eliminate them. Set diversity targets and utilise AI to achieve them.”

Director magazine july/august cover

For more views on AI and leadership from a range of experts, read the July/August edition of Director magazine, out now.

Click here for more technology features from the IoD’s Director magazine

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