In a world where change is the only constant, non-profit and association leaders face an urgent call to action: prioritize staff training in AI. This is not just a strategic move; it's a necessity for survival and relevance in an exponentially evolving landscape.
The AI Revolution and Its Impact
We are at a pivotal moment in history, marked by rapid advancements in AI. These technologies are not just improving; they are doubling in capabilities roughly every six months (learn more here).
This meteoric rise poses a unique challenge for non-profits and associations whose staff may not be sufficiently invested in understanding and leveraging these tools. The lag in skills is not just a gap; it's a widening chasm that threatens to leave many organizations behind.
Training: The Key to Empowerment and Effectiveness
The most common question I encounter is, "How do we start with AI?"
The answer is simple yet profound: begin with comprehensive training in the broad capabilities of AI for yourself and your team. This education is not "one and done", but an ongoing journey.
The assumptions we hold today about AI's potential and limitations are likely to be obsolete in the next six to twelve months.
A Dual Responsibility: Competitive Edge and Team Development
This imperative goes beyond staying competitive. It's about fulfilling a moral obligation to your team – the workforce of the future. An AI-assisted future doesn't exclusively belong to those just now entering the workforce who might find this natural to learn. Learning AI is accessible to all who are willing to invest time and resources in this critical area of knowledge. As a leader, it is critical that you invest in your people so that they are competitive and relevant in the future, for your organization and beyond.
Every member of an organization, regardless of their role, bears the mantle of leadership in this context. It's about initiating conversations, setting examples, and fostering a culture of continuous learning and growth. This leadership extends beyond AI to encompass all aspects of professional development.
Crafting a Game Plan for AI Integration
So, what does an effective AI integration strategy look like? It starts with gaining a foundational understanding of AI. Resources like our free book, Ascend: Unlocking the Power of AI, offer an excellent starting point. Next, it's about getting hands-on experience with tools like ChatGPT and participating in programs like our AI Learning Hub which contextualizes AI for the non-profit and association world.
The focus then shifts to your organization. Identify where your time and resources are heavily invested and where the pain points lie. Engaging in 'what if' scenarios can unlock AI's potential in areas like member services. Likewise, scrutinizing areas perceived as weaknesses from an external perspective can reveal opportunities for AI to streamline processes and enhance user experiences.
The Time to Act is Now
The writing on the wall is clear: the time for leaders to act is now. It's not about making monumental changes overnight but about taking consistent, incremental steps towards integrating AI into your organization. This journey is as much about safeguarding your team's employability as it is about advancing your organization's mission.
Remember, inaction or cutting corners in professional development, especially in a field as dynamic as AI, is a sure path to obsolescence. Embrace the challenge, leverage available resources (such as our new on-demand AI Learning Hub!), and embark on this transformative journey. The future of your organization and its people depends on it.
December 19, 2023