Watch: A conversation on AI's impact on business
The big picture: On Wednesday, November 15, Axios managing editor for business & markets Javier E. David and business reporter Nathan Bomey hosted virtual conversations looking at the impact of AI tools on business.
- Guests included Harvard Business School professor of business administration Karim R. Lakhani and Accenture North America CEO Manish Sharma.
Why it matters: This year's generative AI boom accelerated the adoption of AI-powered tools across many companies and industries as leaders experimented with the use cases of AI in their everyday operations and longer term business strategies. The technology's growing prominence in business raises questions about how it will ultimately impact the workplace and the workforce.
Manish Sharma said that he thinks the growing adoption of artificial intelligence will be beneficial for jobs and for productivity.
- "I think if you really look at AI and if you are able to adopt it in the right way, it will help us do our jobs much better. It will improve the quality, it will reduce the lead times, it will improve the compliance. So you have a very strong narrative that it will actually help us in all our jobs, and that is, I think, the key thing that we need to understand."
Karim R. Lakhani emphasized that learning more about AI and its potentially helpful use cases can help decrease fears about the technology among workers.
- "Look, I think it's a matter of learning how to use the tool. It's kind of like, you know, Steve Jobs called computers "the bicycle for the mind" way back in the '80s, and I think that's an apt term for AI."
In the View from the Top sponsored segment, Meta vice president and head of online sales, operations and partnerships Justin Osofsky explained how long-term investments in AI tools for businesses and consumers have especially come to fruition during this year's AI boom.
- "This has certainly been a breakout year for AI across the industry, but at Meta, it's nothing new for us. We've been investing in AI for many years now. If you think back to the earliest days of news feed where we were using ranking systems to power things, and we've also been investing a lot in our ads products and how AI can power advertising campaigns … And in 2023, we're really seeing a lot of these investments come to fruition. We think this is really going to be the first AI-powered holidays where AI is playing important roles for both businesses as well as for consumers."
Thank you to Meta for sponsoring this event.