Edward Hess, a professor at the University of Virginia’s Darden Graduate School of Business and the author of the new book Learn or Die: Using Science to Build a Leading-Edge Learning Organization, says that artificial intelligence is the most significant human invention since fire. We’ve known for some time that AI is quickly replacing rote human tasks, but astechnology becomes more sophisticated, traditional “white collar” jobs are at risk too. Not even high-level managers are safe.
In order to market yourself effectively against a machine that could potentially do your job faster and more efficiently, you must hone the skills that make you uniquely human. Such skills, including creativity, problem-solving, and emotional engagement, will be difficult if not impossible for a robot to replicate. Professor Hess offers the following advice for protecting your future leadership career against the threat of AI takeover.
Overcome Cognitive Blindness
Humans are lazy, sub-optimal thinkers. We seek to confirm what we already believe, and we tend not to be open-minded or rational. We take what we already know, replicate it, improve it, and repeat. It is easier than thinking critically or innovatively, but it makes us cognitively blind. You can overcome your cognitive blindness by strengthening your critical thinking. Start asking yourself: Why do I believe this? What do I truly know? What don’t I know? What do I need to know?“
Get Better at Not Knowing
We have to change our mindset about what being smart really is. In the technology-enabled world, how much you know will be irrelevant, because smart machines and the Internet will always know more than you. What will be more important is knowing what you don’t know and knowing how to use best learning processes. In other words, the smartest people will be focused on continuous learning.
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