Put simply, the people leader’s core business responsibility is getting the right people and creating the conditions for them to do their best work. Hiring, culture, wellbeing, and training all directly ladder up to that.

Like most digital transformation efforts, the successful adoption of AI depends on workers’ embrace of AI tools, and their efforts to apply them to specific tasks and business problems.

At many companies, people are the most important lever for organizational performance and business outcomes. Deployed successfully, AI and people together provide a competitive advantage.

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A people-centered perspective is also vital for deploying AI within organizations so as to create better quality jobs, and not just to cut costs. Finance leaders’ core frameworks are often around efficiency—leading them to focus on short-term cost efficiencies. Technical leaders generally aren’t as equipped to think strategically about the value of an organization’s people.

People leaders are in the vital position of being able to understand what specific roles entail and guide shaping them alongside the introduction of technology. They understand the nuances of performance and monitor the cultural, wellbeing, and management stresses within organizations. They understand the skills of the talent pool, and the training resources available to upskill existing staff. They can help create conditions where workers feel empowered to experiment with AI tools within security and privacy guard rails. All of this is critical to a sophisticated AI approach.

We’re aware of few organizations currently where human resources is playing this lead role in planning AI adoption. (We’re eager to hear about case studies where this is happening—reach out to us at ai@charterworks.com if you have one to share.) Download Charter’s new strategy briefing memo, “The AI Mandate for HR,” to read our seven frameworks for how people leaders can play a central role in AI’s adoption.

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