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  • Adastrum Consulting

In today's rapidly evolving technological landscape, the emergence of Gen AI presents both a challenge and a significant opportunity for leaders across various industries. As McKinsey's research indicates, Gen AI has the potential to add trillions to the global economy annually and enhance the impact of artificial intelligence by a substantial margin.

With the promise of such transformative potential, it's imperative for leaders to grasp the magnitude of opportunity that Gen AI presents. McKinsey's research has identified over 100 potential Gen AI use cases in the TMT space alone, spanning seven key business domains. From customer care to sales and network operations, the potential for impact is vast.

Seizing the Moment: From Pilot to Scale

While some organisations are already moving to implement Gen AI at scale, others remain in the pilot stage, and some are still deliberating their next steps. However, to remain competitive and relevant in the coming years, it's essential for executives to understand Gen AI's potential impact and develop strategies to incorporate it effectively into their operations. McKinsey's experience in working with clients underscores the potential for significant impact across various functions, particularly in enhancing customer interactions, boosting productivity, and driving revenue growth.

Building an AI-Native Organisation: Keys to Success

Transitioning into an AI-native organisation at scale requires a concerted effort to leverage technology, data, and governance effectively. Success lies in embracing an operating model that harnesses the strengths of both humans and machines, fostering agility, flexibility, and continuous learning. Additionally, investing in data quality and quantity, along with talent development, is paramount for successful Gen AI implementation. The technology aside, it is fundamentally a business change and transformation challenge.

Navigating Challenges and Learning Opportunities

The journey towards Gen AI adoption is not without its challenges. From cultural shifts within organisations to addressing data quality issues and navigating regulatory landscapes, leaders must be prepared to tackle various hurdles. Moreover, developing robust protocols and guardrails and prioritising change management are crucial steps in mitigating risks associated with Gen AI implementation.

Preparing for the Future

As Gen AI continues to evolve, with new capabilities and expanding ecosystems, the stakes for various industry players are high. However, so are the opportunities. The next move from industry leaders will determine their ability to transition from isolated cases to impactful implementations at scale, ultimately shaping the future of their organisations.

Final Thoughts...

The journey towards Gen AI adoption represents a transformative opportunity for industry leaders. By understanding its potential impact and the business change required to build an AI-native organisation, to navigate the transformational challenges effectively, leaders can position their organisations for success in an increasingly Gen AI-driven world.

Adastrum Consulting advises organisations in growth, change and transformation on Executive Search strategy, delivers Interim Management for capability gaps and provides Leadership Assessment and Development services to make the vital difference between People Performance and Business Performance.

We call this integrated talent management.

Talk to us about your growth or transformation goals.

Updated: Mar 27

Executives and businesses worldwide are witnessing the phenomenal rapid rise of Generative Artificial Intelligence, known as GenAI, and its transformative potential. Gen AI is becoming increasingly accessible, integrated into everyday tools, and poised to reshape work as we know it. McKinsey's research predicts that GenAI could automate up to 70% of business activities by 2030, adding trillions to the global economy - it is the killer use case for Digital Transformation, touching every part of every company and industry.

In this rapidly evolving landscape, the question for organisations is not how to keep up with GenAI but how to harness its power strategically. Research by McKinsey found that only 20% of Digital Transformations achieved their revenue predictions and only 17% achieved their cost-cutting ambitions. Similar research by BCG found that only 30% of Digital Transformations succeeded. Against this backdrop, given GenAI will touch almost every part of every company and industry it is important too navigate this journey effectively. Business leaders must consider various strategies, organisational structures, and talent management approaches tailored to their unique contexts and business goals.

Demystify GenAI for Your Team

  • The initial challenge in adopting GenAI is ensuring that everyone (from the board down through the hierarchy) understands its strengths, limitations (it hallucinates!), and relevance as a tool to support their and the organisation's strategic objectives Leaders can emphasise GenAI's potential to augment and enhance both the employee experience (saving time and boosting productivity) and customer experience. Leaders can also emphasise the history of technology advancement, where new skills are developed to do roles that didn’t exist before, rather than swathes of the workforce being replaced. Senior leaders play a crucial role in demystifying the technology and building a compelling narrative for its safe and ethical use as well as investing in the underlying data to ensure the outputs are accurate.

  • In recognition of the hype and fear surrounding GenAI, many of our clients have embarked on enterprise wide education programmes focussed on the opportunities and risks GenAI presents and in parallel are devising their own safeguards and ethical use policy.

Identify High-Impact Applications

  • GenAI is poised to impact nearly every aspect of business, from daily tasks to industry or business model reinvention. It won’t however be a ‘big bang’ or singular application many different applications and products developed over time to solve business problems, deliver organisational efficiency and customer experiences. In the hype cycle we are in it is all too easy for Leaders to experience ‘death by use-case’. Business leaders should adopt an attacker's mindset, proactively identifying priority use cases that have the potential to solve the biggest business problems or have the greatest impact, whilst building the internal knowledge and capability. Some of our clients are standing up internal Chatbots and genAI powered intranets to both showcase its potential and learn from its deployment, some have deployed it in their contact centres augmenting real life live calls. Leaders need to consider the effects of GenAI on their organisation's operations, workforce, customers and culture. As GenAI functionalities become embedded in everyday tools, organisations should also explore how it could influence work patterns, organisational design and workforce planning and skill sets.

  • Perhaps understandably given its infancy and hyped potential, our research has uncovered an all too frequent focus on the technology itself rather than the business problems it can be deployed to solve or efficiency it can deliver. 

Ensure the Right Talent and Infrastructure

  • To fully harness GenAI's potential, organisations must have not only the right technical talent, technology infrastructure and datasets in place but also the right change management capability. GenAI is not simply a plug and play technology to be rolled out across the enterprise, it is fundamentally a business change that impacts operating models, functions and processes and many digital transformation programmes failures can be attributed to an organisations change management capability. Leaders should design effective workforce skills plans and organisational designs to enable the successful adoption of new ways of working driven by the  development and adoption of GenAI applications. Additionally, they should foster a culture that encourages adaptability, speed, trust, integrity, innovation, and experimentation. GenAI can be a catalyst for cultural and skills change, promoting transparency and connectivity within organisations. 

Flex Your Gen AI Muscle

The pace at which GenAI is evolving demands action. Leaders should simultaneously:

  • Demystify Gen AI: Develop a deep understanding of Gen AI and its capabilities and limitations with associated risks, educate the workforce and set clear guardrails and guidelines for its use. Enable clear communication within the organisation about GenAI tools can be used to address business problems, employee and customer experiences.

  • Identify High-Impact Use Cases: Invest in GenAI pilots with the greatest scalability and long-term value. Monitor and measure the outputs of GenAI initiatives. Learn

  • Commit to Building Roles and Skills: Invest in upskilling current employees and continually assess talent needs as GenAI tools evolve for the future workforce. Ensure a strong change management capability 

The potential of Gen AI is boundless, and its value will be realised through tailored applications. Success lies in experimentation, iteration, and taking deliberate action. 

Adastrum Consulting advises organisations in growth, change and transformation on Executive Search strategy, delivers Interim Management for capability gaps and provides Leadership Assessment and Development services to make the vital difference between People Performance and Business Performance. 

We call this integrated talent management. 

Talk to us about your growth or transformation goals.

  • Adastrum Consulting

The unforeseen and high impact events of recent years have left the global business landscape in a state of uncertainty. In addition to these challenges, organisations are managing disruption and continuous technological evolution. This makes it imperative to invest in exploiting technology, better understanding transformation and discerning who is accountable for driving and delivering it. However, this era of unpredictability has left many reeling and unclear on who they need at the helm and what they should do next, a factor supported by research from BCG1 that states that only 30% of digital transformations succeed.

Download 'The D Suite: The Ambiguity of Leadership' here.

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