Put People First: Bringing Your Team On The AI Journey

This is the year when many organisations will be using AI in a big way. But with any change, innovation, or new technology, it’s about people first. So if you’re planning any AI projects this year, make sure you bring your people along on the journey.

Many leaders, teams, and organisations are planning AI projects this year. We know 2023 was the year of AI shock. This year, many organisations are seriously implementing and integrating AI into their workplaces. And as with any other technology journey, it’s not about the technology. It’s about people first, and then the technology will follow.

I’m working soon with a school, helping them use AI in their everyday work. The school principal. who engaged me to work with her leadership team and other staff, said to me,

“Gihan, we have some staff here who’ve been teaching, managing, and leading the same way for 20 to 30 years – including Yours Truly! We want you to help us understand how we can use AI, especially to improve the student experience. We want our students to be excited about learning what’s relevant for their future.”

I love this attitude because she’s got the first thing right: she’s keen and enthusiastic about it. So we’ve already got buy-in from the top.

We also discussed the need to bring everybody else along on the journey, because different people have different attitudes towards AI. Some people are enthusiastic, others are curious, and others might even be resistant or scared.

For that project to succeed, we need buy-in from everybody. It doesn’t mean everybody will be equally excited, but at least everybody’s willing to be heard.

That means having conversations with all the people in your team, to understand their concerns, let them raise issues, and know their goals and aspirations. You need to align all of that with your AI journey.

What sort of things are you going to discuss in those conversations? Download my worksheet about bringing your people on the AI journey for some discussion points.

Remember, it’s people first, technology second!


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