How Artificial Intelligence Will Supercharge Work

machine deep learning

The Electricity of Our Times

Artificial Intelligence (AI) is the new electricity of our times. That’s what Chris Duffey, creative technologist says about this incredible technology revolutionizing industries the world over. Chris spearheads Adobe Creative Cloud strategic development partnerships.

His new book Superhuman Innovation showcases how AI will supercharge the workforce, the world of work, and can be harnessed to deliver powerful change. It is a practical guide to how AI and Machine Learning are impacting not only how businesses, brands, and agencies innovate, but also what they innovate: products, services and content.

In this world of product and pricing parity, the delivery of superior service experience has become the new marketing, and the new real competitive edge. With AI, companies can harness the power of data, personalization and on-demand availability at the touch of an intelligent button.

Superhuman Innovation discusses how AI will serve the superstar innovators of tomorrow by enabling them to see deeper insights and set sail for higher goals. It unearths a powerful five-pronged model which describes how AI enables innovation through the offerings of Speed (facilitating work processes), Understanding (revealing and mastering deep insights), Performance (customization of delivery to customers), Experimentation (the iterative process of reinvention and feedback) and Results (tangible, measurable and optimizable results).


“Artificial Intelligence (AI) is the new electricity of our times.” -Chris Duffey

A Book Co-Written by AI (!)

How in the world?! That’s my first thought as I am talking with you. Chris, how did you co-write this book with Aimé, an artificial intelligence agent?  

When I was a creative technologist working on digital health experiences, I saw first-hand how AI has the power to enrich people’s lives, and that was the source of inspiration for writing the book. We are now going through this interesting period with AI, and we go through it with every new technology – first we need to understand what it is and is not and then how to operationalize it within organizations both big and small to be able to leverage it to solve real world business and societal problems. With the recent advances of AI particularly around 2012, we had a convergence of computational power, access to a surplus of data and new AI techniques that allowed us to have this resurgence of use cases and applications.

So with this in mind, during the process of writing the book about the immense possibilities of AI as an amplifier of human ability at scale, I was inspired by a number of AI firsts: the first news articles created by AI, the first financial reports made by AI, the first car commercial created by AI, the first perfume created by AI, the first AI artwork sold at Christies, the first movie trailer created by AI… So I said to myself let’s not just write a book about AI, but let’s use AI to be a co-author. One interesting future conversation point here is, we do have a tendency to apply human traits to AI systems. In a sense it’s cognitive shorthand for contextualizing what an AI system can help achieve, so when we say co-author, we define it on 3 levels.

This framework of AI tools to help assist in the writing process was comprised of AI Voice Recognition, AI Content Understanding/Summarization, and AI Content Creation and Generation.

Voice Recognition and continuous dictation enables human-to-system interaction through a voice-user interface (VUI) for tasks such as speech-to-text, text-to-speech, voice editing, formatting, spelling, and sharing of documents—essentially a multi-model communication exchange.

AI Content Understanding and Summarization technology reviews and abridges databases, articles or research papers into quick, digestible content through approaches such as sentiment analysis, attribute labeling, and organization of higher-level concepts based on contextual understanding.

AI Content Creation and Generation is the ability for the system to develop concepts and ideas to aid the content creation process. Writing algorithms which were designed to emulate the human writing process helped contribute ideas, titles, content and responses.

The book’s format reflects and is written as the dialogue between myself and the AI system which we call Aimé, which stands for AI + Me, and is reflective of how AI has the ability to amplify the human experience.

McKinsey: AI is advancing 10 times faster and at 300 times the scale of the Industrial Revolution


AI to the Rescue

7 Needs Work Should Fulfill

great place to work

Make Work Great

Leaders recognize that organizations are great because of the people working in them. Knowing that people make or break a company is one reason leaders are constantly trying to improve company culture.

Moe Carrick’s new book, Bravespace Workplace: Making Your Company Fit for Human Life, recognizes the importance of people so much that the dedication at the very front of it is “dedicated to workers everywhere. You are the heart of it all, and it’s what you do every day that makes your company great.” How very true that is, and how incredible for Moe to recognize it even before page one.

“If only my manager thought that way,” you may be thinking or even, “Would it be too obvious for me to buy a copy for my manager?”

Moe addresses some important issues as she advocates for people, for culture development, and for thriving organizations in the midst of rapid change. I reached out to her to talk about her work.

“Creating the kind of workplace that is actually fit for human life goes way beyond mere happiness.” –Moe Carrick

Make it a Bravespace

What does a bravespace workspace look like?

Most simply, I define a bravespace workplace as one where people can show up as they are, both perfect and flawed, and do great things together. Bravespace workplaces activate, enliven, and tenderly support the complex humans that we are so that we can bring all of ourselves to work every day. This means that an organization designs itself, trains its people leaders, and runs day-to-day processes so that the people who work there (any company’s greatest asset!) can bring their highest and best skills to work every day. People sometimes over-simplify what I am saying as “a workplace where people are happy” but let’s face it, an ice cream cone can make me happy!  Creating the kind of workplace that is actually fit for human life goes way beyond mere happiness.

“Brave doesn’t always involve grand gestures.” -Shauna Niequist

Andrew Carnegie

Breathe to Succeed

breathe to succeed

Take a Deep Breath 

Technology has revolutionized the way we work today, but working at the pace of tech is not sustainable.

Have you ever harnessed the power of a deep breath to change your day?

Research continues to validate the power of the breath. Learning how to breathe can increase your productivity and reduce your stress. Perhaps its simplicity is the reason many do not practice it daily.

In her new book, Breathe to Succeed, Sandy Abrams talks about how to utilize the power of breath & mindset tools in a simple, fast & effective way that helps us enhance clarity, creativity, productivity & success on many levels. I reached out to her to talk about her experiences and research.

“Fear is excitement without breath.” -Robert Heller

The Benefits of Deep Breathing

There are so many scientific benefits to deep breathing, and you share them throughout the book. Would you just share a few of them?

Deep breaths immediately take us inward and bring us into the present moment, which is a coveted destination these days since most of our time is spent living in the past or future as well as externally: reacting to pop up notifications, emails, text, social media.

Deep breaths connect us to the part of our brain that regulates emotion; so with even just a few deep breaths we connect our mind and body and are able to work from optimal thoughts and energy rather than autopilot.

Deep breaths offer both immediate and long-term benefits like meditation but can be done in the moment, without having to master the art of stillness or reserve chunks of time.

“When you begin your day with mental clarity from slow, deep breathing, you take control of your priorities and put yourself first.” Sandy Abrams

What do you say to those who are skeptical (as you once were) of the power of breathing?

New Rules to Increase Employee Engagement


Creating Engagement

With so much focus on engagement, you would think that the statistics would dramatically improve. Instead, most of the surveys show employees are not fully engaged. Why is this, and what can be done about it?

In a her book, Employee Confidence: The New Rules of Engagement, Karen J. Hewitt, argues that employee confidence and engagement are intertwined. The difference maker in engagement is confidence. I had a chance to catch up with her and talk about her new book and work.


“Disengagement isn’t the real problem – confidence is.” -Karen J. Hewitt


How to Thrive

What makes an organization thrive?

There is only one thing that makes an organization thrive, and that’s its people. It’s as simple as that. The moment your people stop feeling valued, or supported to achieve their potential, or communicated with, their engagement levels fall.  And when this happens, you’re not just looking at engagement problems, but problems with all the other things engagement drives, like quality, productivity and client satisfaction for example.

Even worse, the best employees leave, which inflates costs and blows a big hole in both productivity and the engagement levels of those who remain.

Clever business leaders put 80% of their efforts into their people, because they know that people are the key to everything else they are looking for. It sounds obvious I know, but most leaders do the opposite. They get so hung up on the numbers that they place a disproportionate amount of attention on them, to the detriment of their people.

As soon as they stop taking time to understand what their people need, disengagement is the natural outcome, and with disengagement, the all-important numbers either go downhill or don’t deliver what they could because employees aren’t operating to their potential.


“Coaching is transformational leadership in action.” -Karen J. Hewitt


Create an Engaged Culture