Often, if you mention using Artificial Intelligence (AI) in a business setting, people start to become a little jittery. This is mainly because of those terrifying news articles circulating online about which jobs will be replaced by AI in the years to follow. And if you’re holding your breath, waiting to read about that in the next two to three minutes, you can relax. We’re not going to be telling you to replace meeting attendees with chatbots or anything of the sort. No, instead, we’ll be discussing how AI can help to increase concentration levels during important meetings.
Think about that important client pitch or creative session you’ve been planning. You’ve been organizing it for months and have ensured that every independent contractor, creative freelancer, skilled team member, and client decision-maker will be available on the day. You did your research and found the perfect place for hourly office rental space in a central location so that everyone from the Creative Director from Williamsburg to the CEO from Upper East Side Manhattan can make it. But even though you’ve planned every tiny detail down to what brand of coffee bean will be served and how it will be brewed, you can’t control what actually happens once everyone is in the room.
You can’t force people to focus. That’s a fact that every person who has ever attended a strategy session will tell you. You can’t ensure that a meeting will deliver the level of concentration that your project or business venture needs. But you can use AI to take over all the tasks that could derail the discussion or distract people from focusing on the content of the meeting.
AI can be used to take detailed notes
These days very few meetings include a dedicated note-taker. Instead, everyone sits there with their laptops, smartphones, tablets or even notebooks and pens. This is so that they can take down any information that they find relevant. But note-taking could actually be harming productivity. How many times have you heard someone say that they take notes in order to help them remember key points? And how many times have you looked over that person’s shoulder and simply seen them doodling or writing bullet points containing nothing but stating the obvious?
With everyone in the meeting engaging with each other rather than taking notes, you’ll find it’s easier to focus on the subject at hand. And when you use AI in this capacity, you’ll find programs in this area have features that allow you to set up action plans with reminders being sent to relevant parties and bookmark important information as you go along.
Use AI as an assistant and fact-finder
As much as you might have wanted to roll your eyes when your boss who claimed “financial times are tough” when you asked for a raise, walked into the office with a brand new virtual assistant from his favorite tech company, having AI at your fingertips could actually be a lifesaver in a meeting. For example, using simple voice commands, Alexa for Business by Amazon could set up reminders, put in orders or send messages without you having to remember to do it later.
Of course, the real help comes in when you create Custom Skills for the Virtual Assistant. You can pretty much use Alexa to pull up any information regarding the business (like reports, employee information and more), ask financial based questions or even use it to fact-check something a meeting attendee has said.
With tech available to give you all the answers you need in a matter of seconds, you can carry on talking about the purpose of the meeting without it being derailed by an unnecessary fact-finding competition. You’ll always have the correct information right there in the room with you, which means that fewer mistakes will be made based on outdated information.
Making use of AI in the way you do everyday business shouldn’t be a scary thought. For the most part, we’re already doing it. Instead, we need to embrace what technology can offer us so that we can concentrate on creativity, problem-solving and making the big decisions. AI isn’t complicated, it’s just the way we speak about it that makes it sound more complex than it is. Modern tech can help us increase focus in meetings by handling the mundane things we’ve been wasting time doing ourselves.