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CEOs discuss how AI will impact productivity and jobs

When Glenn Fogel, CEO and President of Booking Holdings, thinks about using artificial intelligence to improve travel bookings, he sees a tool that could help him achieve his vision of a “connected trip.” .

What will connected travel look like? It’s a futuristic spin on how travel was booked in the past. A few decades ago, travelers relied on human travel agents to book their travel. These agents knew something about them, their travel preferences and what they could afford to guide their bookings. Since the advent of the Internet and self-booking, many travelers are planning their own travel, a process that can be frustrating.

Generative AI, Fogel explained, can drive conversations between passengers and agents. But this time, the agents will be AI and will have the ability to personalize recommendations and travel plans. Fogel believes customer service is another area that can be improved with AI

“We are proceeding methodically and carefully,” Fogel said. LuckLeading CEOI’s virtual discussion on Monday Luck CEO Alan Murray. Bookings already uses two ChatGPT plugins on the market, but Fogel just wants to combine technology responsibly. “Nobody wants their trip to be bad,” Fogel said. “So we have to be careful to make sure we don’t ruin the trust that we’ve built over many years.”

AI has experienced great interest from business leaders, who have been awestruck by the capabilities and accessibility of AI tools, as well as cautious about what the future will impact.

“It opens up the question of, well, how do we use this properly?” said Joe Atkinson, PwC Vice Chairman and Chief Products and Technology Officer. “And every customer I’m talking to is trying to figure out how to go faster, but how to go faster in a responsible way right now.”

What’s driving caution, Atkinson said, is concern about privacy and proprietary information, especially in environments like AI where the nature of technology is that everything is out in the open. There are also concerns about how to effectively use the technology and channel the power of AI in the right ways, and how to prepare people. What will AI do for productivity and how can it affect people’s jobs?

Atkinson said, “We think it comes down to training people to take advantage of the technology, because we know if you don’t prepare people for the technology, it’s going to come anyway.” ” “And so part of the responsibility we see for any organization – but certainly large employers – is to help prepare our people for the changes that are coming.”

Patrick Geraghty, CEO and president of Guidewell Mutual Holding Corporation and Florida Blue, is encouraging his team to experiment with the technology, but with certain parameters.

“When we’re talking about things that are going to happen in the general public, we tend to be more cautious,” Geraghty said. “You’re encouraging creativity. But you’re also trying to do it in the kind of environment that you have control over.

There is still work to be done before figuring out how to incentivize doctors or nurses to use AI as co-pilots, he said, because often those individuals have many problems with not only hospitals, but also competitors. There can be connections.

But despite the caution, Geraghty said AI and ChatGPT will be a permanent agenda item at every board meeting he has this year to make sure the board is thinking about where they are going as this emerging technology. is related to.

Microsoft is particularly bullish on AI after investing $10 billion in ChatGPT creator OpenAI.

“The amount of energy going into [A.I.] is clear,” said Chris Young, executive vice president of business development, strategy and enterprise at Microsoft.

Young acknowledged that concerns about proprietary information have validity. Microsoft often works with customers to better educate them about the appropriate security measures that are put in place to ensure the security of their information.

The other common issue is the enormity of the technology’s potential. Many organizations do not know where to start. Young appreciated the concept of AI as a co-pilot, that is, a tool that can be used alongside a team member to make work more productive. When employees hear this, they worry about how AI will affect their jobs. But Young is excited about the potential.

“Any time you bring new capabilities like this to market, it’s going to transform the way organizations operate,” Young said. “And there are ways to work through it, whether it’s training people in different ways or repurposing some of the work that people do in different categories. But I think we can really See it as an opportunity to build and grow the economy versus taking away what it is today.

Atkinson agreed, saying that every major technology innovation has raised questions about job displacement. Atkinson said, “There is always a displacement of functions as well.” “But if you prepare people to transition, you’re going to take advantage of growth opportunities. And I think that’s where most of our customers are going right now.

After all, CEO says there’s no stopping AI’s advance

“We believe this is going to affect almost every knowledge worker’s job to some degree,” said Skillsoft CEO Jeff Tarr. When the education technology company introduced the Generative AI course, the next most popular course offered by Skillsoft saw a fourfold increase in enrollment.

Meanwhile, for Thrivent, the co-pilot model could help its advisors free up time to better serve their clients. “In financial services, I believe generative AI is a powerful tool and has the potential to transform truly every business,” said Terry Rasmussen, President and CEO of Thrivent.

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