Artificial Intelligence is taking over the world, so many businesses are finally going with the trend instead of against the grain. While AI is still considered a relatively new technology and continues to grow daily, it is something businesses are now using as a catalyst to increase innovation, sales, and overall growth. Whatever your heart desires, or business needs are, you will likely find solutions with an AI tool. Whether it be writing and content creation, image design, video creation, or you simply need a solution to assist you with your company’s organization or customer service side, artificial intelligence is here to serve you.

In an interview with a Chief Technology Officer at a major Atlanta corporation, he gave insight into what AI means to him, his employees, and his company’s growth.


Current AI tools and trends

AI is revolutionizing the business landscape, with many companies embracing it as a spark for innovation and growth. While true, the CTO says, “We want to identify pragmatic use cases for AI that do not adversely impact employee roles, security policies, work output, or delivery credibility.” There are some bad seeds out there, but innovative, superb AI tools are available to businesses.

Speaking of, several effective AI tools are trending in 2024 and beyond. IBM, a top global technology innovator, shares its list:

  • Reality check: more realistic expectations
  • Multimodal AI
  • Small(er) language models and open-source advancements
  • GPU shortages and cloud costs
  • Model optimization is getting more accessible
  • Customized local models and data pipelines
  • More powerful virtual agents
  • Regulation, copyright, and ethical AI concerns
  • Shadow AI (and corporate AI policies)

The CTO’s remarks align closely with what IBM researchers state in their article regarding advancements and standing out. “…the most impactful developments may be those focused on governance, middleware, training techniques, and data pipelines that make generative AI more trustworthy, sustainable, and accessible for enterprises and end users alike.” This emphasizes the importance of closely watching AI trends and the beneficial technological advancements we have coming our way.


Leveraging AI tools for transformative growth

Many wonder how businesses need to pivot to leverage AI.

The CTO stresses the need for buy-in from executives, the workforce, and customers to ensure successful integration into business operations. This alignment is crucial for maximizing AI’s benefits while mitigating potential risks. He states, “Employers must create executive, workforce, and customer acceptance of these tools as a natural contributor to a business outcome or product.” While certain AI tools can pose a risk to a company, many others work wonderfully and align with top business goals. Therefore, it is imperative to gain buy-in from all stakeholders to help the company grow and expand.

Artificial intelligence isn’t simply the way of the future; it is the present. Moreover, AI will only continue to advance, and its capabilities will be almost endless. It is interesting to think about where AI and data intelligence will be in five years and how they will transform industries worldwide.

When asked where he sees his company in the near future regarding transformative AI, he added, “We will start devaluing standard generative outputs (all look the same), so higher-level services will be the only true way to differentiate.” This means that instead, the focus of AI will shift towards providing more advanced and unique services as the primary means of standing out and differentiating within the industry.

While these AI tools and trends seem promising, challenges (that do currently and will in the future) arise that leaders must acknowledge and be proactive about handling.


The challenges of AI in business

Earlier, the interviewee brought up a crucial point that is highly relevant to the impact of AI within the workplace. AI tools shift roles within a company, placing more or less of a workload on employees or simply creating new functions within the company. But more importantly, data, cybersecurity, and the credibility of AI’s output are potential hazards to the workplace, including to clients and customers. The CTO highlights the importance of finding AI tools that do not negatively impact the company’s vision.

According to an article in Forbes, some adverse impacts, for example, include the lack of accuracy and accountability, skills gap, legal risks, and intellectual property, all of which become questions when using certain AI tools.

For leaders embarking on AI integration, he advises maintaining perspective and articulating clear policies to govern AI usage and protect organizational assets. This strategic approach ensures that AI adoption aligns with business objectives while safeguarding against potential risks. He states, Curtailing individual usage of various products and cases to focus on ones that the entire organization can agree upon as valuable and thought out for these purposes.”

Individuals within the organization must exercise caution when choosing and utilizing different AI and data intelligence tools independently. Instead, the focus should be on selecting and agreeing upon specific tools and cases that everyone in the organization sees as valuable and well-suited for achieving the organization’s goals.

This makes it imperative that businesses intelligently adopt and utilize AI and only choose reputable and secure tools.


Going forward with AI

Embracing AI technology is no longer an option but necessary for companies looking to thrive in today’s competitive landscape. Understanding and harnessing AI’s power enhances operations and innovation as businesses grow, positioning the company for long-term success.

When asked what advice this tech leader would give other CTOs looking to integrate AI and data intelligence into their operations, he replied, “To keep things in perspective when discussing the reliance and investment associated with AI, particularly with board-level discussions. I would advise starting with well-articulated policies to govern this technology’s usage and protect your organizational IP and security posture.”

The IT landscape is rapidly transforming with the integration of AI tools and trends. As businesses embrace AI technologies to drive innovation, enhance sales, and foster growth, they face critical considerations such as data security, credibility, and workforce adaptation. The CTO’s insights underscore the importance of identifying realistic AI tools that align with business objectives while mitigating cybersecurity and data integrity risks. The emphasis on higher-level AI services and differentiation becomes paramount as the industry evolves.

To navigate this complex situation successfully, business leaders must maintain perspective, articulate clear policies with their employees, and weigh the risks and benefits of AI adoption. A culture of informed decision-making and strategic integration within their organizations is imperative. Businesses can leverage AI as a powerful catalyst for innovation, differentiation, and sustained success in the evolving digital era.

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