Culture Eats Artificial Intelligence for Breakfast

Artificial intelligence (AI) is gaining importance, and along with its development, there is a democratization of its use in organizations. 


For more and more companies, artificial intelligence is no longer an alien but an ally. This is reflected in the latest reports, most relevantly the survey of NewVantage, in which more than 65 leading companies of Fortune 100 are represented. More than 90% of the respective executives have recognized that; to remain competitive in their markets a transformation of the organizations is needed to be more agile and effective. And in order to do that, they need to use the power of data, i.e. by artificial intelligence.  


Along the same line, 88% of those executives state that – due to the risk of real disruption in their businesses – this has become a situation of primary urgency for their companies and investment in AI is indispensable 




Increased adoption, improved results 


Investment in AI is a reality in 96.4% of the leading organizations cited in the survey. Besides, 92% of them are not only investing, but accelerating the pace of this investment. Given these data, as for leading organizations we can already speak of a universality of artificial intelligence today. 


However, the growing investment in AI is neither an effect of coincidence nor trends, but of tangible and measurable results. 62% of the organizations report they have achieved satisfactory results from their AI investments. 


In this sense, the advanced analysis capacity that is provided by AI allows for its best results in: 


  • Improvement in customer service processes
  • Faster introduction of new products
  • Effectiveness in the development of new services 
  • Cost reduction in all areas



AI is facing cultural and organizational obstacles but never technological ones 


Despite the evident results artificial intelligence is achieving, in most cases these are results of pilot projects. Those projects can focus on specific business problems such as better segmentation, attraction or customer loyalty. 


However, very few organizations manage to use the data offered by the capabilities of AI to put the customer at the center and their teams in front.


For example, there are still very few organizations that have aligned their organization to achieve a holistic improvement of their end-to-end customer journey. In most cases, their improvement results from specific, disconnected initiatives without a cross-sectional view that makes the organization learn from true experiences of the client.


Again, although technology allows it, silos and the status quo prevent it.



In this respect, the results of the Fortune 100 report are devastating. Only 7.5% of the asked believe that technology is currently a challenge. And the remaining 92.5% consider the capabilities of their people and business processes the main barrier to becoming organizations that take full advantage of their data. 


Given all these figures and evidence, there is no doubt that today in most organizations culture is eating artificial intelligence for breakfast.



And those cultural factors bear first and last names; lack of organizational alignment and agility. But also a resistance to the speed of current change, and lack of understanding to see data as an asset of the company. 


AI also provides cultural and organizational opportunities 


The good news: technology is no longer a barrier and cultures that take full advantage of AI can be developed, currently and in the future. For that purpose, successful companies are continuously focusing on (r)evolutionizing their organizations: 



From power of position to power of data


The hierarchy was the answer to the need for controlling tasks, for execution. In this solution they separated those who thought and made decisions from those who executed by a time delay of days, weeks or even months.  


In fact, currently the environment is volatile, uncertain, complex, ambiguous, and above all, subject to an accelerated and disruptive change.  


And in this new reality, the survival of an organization depends on everyone thinking, making decisions and acting to respond with agility and effectiveness.


All this, translated into the internal reality of organizations means a radical paradigm shift: 


In the past, it was your position that granted you power, today it´s the data.


In this context,


AI is the great ally to create a culture where every person has the power and authority to make decisions thanks to the recommendations generated by AI algorithms.



From Hierarchy to Netarchy 


In this scenario, execution and learning must follow each decision, and that usually involves using the algorithm’s recommendations from different perspectives and approaches.


The hierarchy of the organization chart gives way to a netarchy. It involves with diversity and the ability not only to translate recommendations into actions, but also to collaborate continuously with AI to improve its effectiveness.


For that reason, the full potential of AI is achieved when companies are organized into networks of self-organized, diversified teams. They are capable of collaborating and using the analytical power of AI to build together, measure, learn and iterate at the pace required by the consumers.



From specialized to augmented talent 


For decades, we have created the artificial boundaries of disciplines to build productive forces of standardized and scalable talent. In recent years, the growing need for human collaboration has also made us see the need to develop competencies that will enable the productive force to collaborate with related disciplines. 


What is more, we created all this and it worked in a setting where stability and predictability was overruling adaptability and responsiveness. In today’s world, the new stability requires the capacity for self-renewal, even self-disruption – not easy. The only possible stability is steadiness in motion.


We live in an era where not to move means to crystallize, and if you crystallize, you´ll break.



This new reality requires a talent capable of collaborating with both people and AI algorithms, where disciplines converge thanks to the analytical power of technology. Specialization gives way to continuous transformation, learning agility, and the ability to take on transdisciplinary challenges using the exponential growth of technological potential. 


We are talking about organizations where disciplinary separation and separation of man and machine yield to the flow of knowledge and to continuous and collective learning – enhanced by artificial intelligence.  





The (near) future belongs to Artificial Intelligence


On the eve of 2020, we have immersed into a decade where little by little, without even realizing it, we will begin to live together, learn and create with artificial intelligence in practically everything we do in organizations.Iin the total disruption of the supply chain by new manufacturing and transport technologies; the development of products by generative design; in the transformation of the relationship with our customers and consumers by cognitive and emotional analysis; selection of talent by objective and unbiased evaluation; in connectivity and communication without cultural or language barriers… 


The technology that can bring artificial intelligence to life is at hand and is developing at exponential speed every day. Using it effectively to achieve the best purposes for our organizations is all up to us and our intelligence, the human intelligence. 


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