Embracing the AI Revolution: Insights from Shark Tank's Kevin O'Leary on Transforming Life and Work

    May 27, 2024 Posted by : Tim Hagen
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    Embracing the AI Revolution: Insights from Shark Tank's Kevin O'Leary on Transforming Life and Work

    The fusion of artificial intelligence with everyday life is a topic so colossal it dwarfs the Internet revolution in its potential to transform our world. Even Mr. Wonderful, Kevin O'Leary, the financial maestro from Shark Tank, shared a recent personal encounter with an AI that assessed his health with unnerving precision. We have to peek into AI's prowess and embrace the inevitable shift it signals in our professional and personal spheres.

    Imagine a workplace where AI tools coach leaders and self-coaching systems guide employees through complex conversations; we're living in that reality. Let's explore AI's innovative frontiers in organizational culture. Acknowledge the trepidation it stirs and the conversations it demands.

    Leaders, the way you navigate this new terrain is pivotal—your responses today shape tomorrow's trust. The AI wave is here, and resistance is futile. Join us to understand how to ride this wave with confidence and foresight, ensuring you're not left in the digital dust.


    We are in the midst of a technology revolution that is probably going to be second to none, including the Internet: Artificial Intelligence.

    It's here. I just saw Mr Wonderful, Kevin O'Leary from Shark Tank, who shared that he experienced a scan of his body using an AI tool that gave a diagnosis of his health, from his blood pressure to a variety of things. It was interesting to me because my wife is a physician. What's happening is exciting on one end, but it's also scary on the other. It is going to prompt all of us present, myself included, to navigate and change.

    Let me put myself front and center for a moment. We love AI, and I love technology. I'm kind of a geek when it comes to coaching and using different tools, and there's so much out there right now already. We even built our own AI tool that helps leaders prepare for coaching conversations, and our system allows you to ask questions such as "What's a good question for someone lacking initiative?"

    Now we're building out a practice app with a company called Interflexion that's going to allow you to score coaching conversation skills done with an AI app.

    Third, we just found another tool that allows us to put our content into our own AI self-coaching tool so employees can log into a system and say, "I had a tough conversation today. Someone wasn't listening to me, and we had a conversation of conflict. What do I do?" The tool will toggle between coaching, asking you questions, and mentoring, where you might say you just need answers. When I looked at this thing, I realized very quickly that we had to build something because we were going to be left out in the dark.

    Yet all of this is going to conjure up something. I promise you this will happen:

    AI is going to prompt employees to ask questions. AI is going to freak people out, and it is going to prompt leaders to have to answer questions. What we say is really important.

    One thing I want to give context to is an article from the Harvard Business Review. A leader typically gets interrupted four to seven times a day with the proverbial "Hi, boss, do you have a second?" The interruption is really going to be about 15 to 20 minutes, but we say 'a second' because we don't want to be that interruptive. We as leaders think it's only a second, but truly we know it's not just one second; it'll be more. In that moment, what we say matters.

    If leaders reply, "Sorry, I don't have time right now. I'm going to a meeting," or "How long is this going to take?" that will prompt a reaction. Another reaction that will be prompted, for example, if someone is an editor who does a lot of writing for the organization, they're going to see all these AI tools coming out geared at content writing and editing. They are going to ask themselves, "Is my job on the line?"

    There are two things at play there.

    #1: We, as individuals, leaders, and individual contributors, have to be ready to navigate and change. You do not have a choice.

    #2: Leaders, how you handle that situation is critical. If somebody says, don't worry about it, and two weeks later, you get a mandate saying we're going to start using AI editing tools, what's going to happen to the relationship between that employee and the leader? It's going to be broken. Even though the leader may not be wrong.

    What we have to understand is that AI is not coming; it's here.

    Spoiler alert: AI is going to disrupt exponentially. Most people don't like change, and AI is already throwing people into the mess of change. The choice has left the building.

    What are your thoughts?


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    About Author

    Tim Hagen
    Tim Hagen

    Tim Hagen founded Progress Coaching, a Training Reinforcement Partner Company, in 1997. His entrepreneurial career began in college leading to positions in sales, sales management, and sales training for small and large corporations, and eventually ownership of several training companies. Tim is often a keynote speaker at companies teaching the value of coaching and conversations in the workplace. He possesses a unique combination of hands-on experience, academics, and innovative insight to solve the industry’s most common challenges specific to workplace performance. Tim holds a bachelor’s degree in Adult Education and Training from the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee.

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