AI Projects: Small Steps To Big Success

You don’t need a huge transformation to get the benefits of AI in your organisation – and in fact, this often gets in the way of making progress. Instead, run small-scale AI projects, which save money, boost productivity, improve well-being, and increase engagement. Plus, they help your team get comfortable with AI, encouraging a culture of innovation.

Let’s talk about two contrasting ways to use and implement AI. Both approaches have benefits, and both can work, but one of them is easier for most leaders, especially if you’re not leading an IT department or a very technical group of people.

The first approach is what the giant consulting firm PwC does. They have taken the AI transformation approach – and fully committed to it. They have invested a billion dollars in their AI transformation, with a big investment into technology, including building their own version of ChatGPT called ChatPwC. It’s also for educating their people, bringing in the necessary skills from outside, and providing mentoring from technical experts to help others in the organisation.

This is an excellent approach – if you can afford it!

If you have a cool billion dollars at hand, it can be a great strategy. 💰

But it’s a big job! 🏋️

And unless you commit fully, this can take a long time. For example, a senior leader in another organisation (which shall remain nameless!) told me their transformation process would take two years! And during this time, they won’t allow employees to use AI because it’s seen as unreliable and inaccurate. Even leaving aside the obvious fact that AI will have evolved beyond recognition in two years, the entire organisation is stuck in the meantime, unable to use what’s available now!

What if there was a better way? 💡

🚀 There is: Running AI projects.

Rather than a top-down strategy for the whole organisation, AI projects are small, fast, and driven by individual leaders and managers. These projects take 3-4 months, and generate immediate value in several ways: saving money, making money, saving time, boosting productivity, improving well-being, and increasing engagement. 🌟

As a bonus, these small projects also help people get comfortable with AI. Instead of fearing that AI will take their jobs, they see how it can enhance their work. This builds confidence and a mindset of using AI regularly in their roles. 🤝

So, we have two contrasting approaches: AI transformation and AI projects. The transformation approach might be “better”, but it takes longer – much longer. Starting with small-scale AI projects quickly generates value and helps teams get comfortable with AI. That’s the approach I’m using with my clients, and they are seeing success – fast! 🏆

The first key to success is picking the right projects. Not everything can be done in a 90-day project, so choose projects that add value and are manageable by non-technical teams. For example, with one recent client, our first workshop started with about 150 projects, and the teams narrowed that down to just six! 🎯

If you need help running these projects, feel free to reach out to me. You can also download the worksheet I’ve provided to help you choose the right projects for your team. Start small, create value, and build a culture of innovation with AI. 📈

I’ll see you in the future. 🌐


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