Today’s leaders are pioneering business to reach new heights and are actualizing realities that were once only reserved for science fiction movies. We read about tech giants investing millions of dollars into artificial intelligence (AI) research. Google has launched a suite of AI-powered hardware, Amazon offers machine learning to customers like the NFL and Tinder, and even Walmart has joined in on the fun with the formation of its Intelligence Research Lab, stating that “by harnessing the power of artificial intelligence, we can create conveniences that benefit everyone.”
If you’re running a small business, chances are you that may tune out when the conversation turns to AI. AI sounds expensive and investing in AI tools may seem out of reach. Since AI is still an emerging field of research, it also may be overwhelming to know where to start. Plus it’s easy to get lost in the lingo (deep learning? predictive what?).
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First off, it’s important to define—what is artificial intelligence? Artificial intelligence is the field of study focused on programming computers to solve problems that typically require human cognitive functions to solve. You’ve experienced AI in action if you’ve told Netflix what you did (and didn’t like) watching. Based on your feedback, Netflix suggests other options of things you might like. The more you watch and the more you rate what you watch, the better Netflix can learn your preferences and use all of the other data that it collects to improve the suggestions it gives you. Improving its suggestions improves the likelihood you’ll be satisfied and not only keep your monthly subscription but also keep you talking about what you’re watching which will drive others to subscribe or keep subscribing as well.
Unleashing the Power of AI
Sounds great but how can you start to unleash the power of AI to improve customer satisfaction and results? Here’s 3 tips on how to plunge into the wonderful world of AI:
1) Follow AI experts on LinkedIn
This recommendation comes from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s blog CO— and is a great way to start receiving bite-sized updates on what’s going on in the AI field. We recommend following @Andrew Ng, @Nigel Duffy, and @Anne Cheung.
2) Take a beginner’s course
Coursera offers a free beginner-level course called “AI for Everyone”. For a week, you can spend less than an hour a day, learning more about AI and how you can build it into your organization. 38% of learners reported receiving a tangible career benefit after completing. You can also learn more about AI from free resources from Google and Amazon.
3) Iterate AI solutions
At the beginning of the week, ask your team to note 2-3 tasks that they find themselves manually repeating. Research to see what out-of-the-box or custom AI solutions you can try in order to implement solutions in order to free up your team’s time so they can focus on more complex problems.
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by Sophie Parkison on 10-01-2020