«I’m afraid of people, not artificial intelligence. “Sanity will prevail”

It’s almost annoying to do an interview with him because he is part of that group of people who are a pleasure to listen to, without cuts or interruptions. Concise, direct, entertaining… his speech flows smoothly, seamlessly, intoxicating. Graduate in Contemporary History from the UAB, Xavier Marcet i Gisbert (Terrassa, 1961) participate this Friday, May 3, in Logroño, in La Fombera starting at 9:30 a.m., in the First Conference on Artificial Intelligence organized by Diario LA RIOJA. Business consultant, expert in strategy, innovation, and transformation of organizations, Marcet has participated in projects for brands such as Seat, AstraZeneca, Sony, HP or Banco de Santander, just some of the more than 500 firms from around the planet that have He has used their services since he founded his own company, Lead To Change, in 2002. Associate professor at the Barcelona School of Management of the Pompeu Fabra University (UPF), president of the management board of the Euncet Business School, of the Barcelona Drucker Society and collaborator of La Vanguardia and the Digital Magazine Sintetia.com, in addition to writer, with numerous published titles, among others ‘Growing by growing’ (2021) or ‘Avoiding Mediocrity’ (2018), both on the Editorial Platform, today he will be responsible for the opening presentation of the day, under the title ‘The workers of thought. The new relationship: people and technology’.

– Innovation, technology, artificial intelligence… Where is the person, the human being?

– No matter how much technology there is, the person remains at the center, who makes the difference are the people, basically those with the ability to think because they will be the ones who will have the most influence and will be able to put technology in their favor. A hundred years ago workers were manual workers, with the information age we began to have what we call knowledge workers and I have now added this concept of thought worker, because the fundamental characteristic of the workers of this era of artificial intelligence will be the ability to think. We will be able to defend our professional skills, our work, if we have the ability to think; If we only have the ability to mimic, it will be more difficult to keep jobs, which is why it is so fundamental not to be able to think, but to know how to think.

Conference on Artificial Intelligence

  • Quote
    I Artificial Intelligence Conference. AI in the company.

  • Where
    Friday, May 3, in La Fombera. 9.30 am.

  • Organize
    LA RIOJA Newspaper, sponsored by the Government of La Rioja, Ader and Banco Sabadell.

  • The program
    Welcome by Goyo Ezama, general director of Nueva Rioja; Vicente Arina, director of the Navarra Large Companies Office of Banco Sabadell; and Belinda León, Minister of Economy. Inaugural presentation (9.45) by Xavier Marcet, ‘The workers of thought. The new relationship: people and technology’. Pills, starting at 10:30, with Alfredo Martínez, head of R&D at Ader; Miguel Moya, co-founder Cerolimit and director of creative technologies BCB marketing Intellingence; Aitor Vidal, business director of Onirix; and Luis Echávarri, head of Data Analytics and Artificial Intelligence at Banco Sabadell.

– You hear it all, are you afraid of artificial intelligence?

– No, I am always afraid of people. Machines have people behind them and this idea that in the end one day machines will surpass people… I think humanity has many problems, but we are not that stupid yet and I sincerely believe that sanity will prevail.

– Where are we going?

– I believe that we are going towards a type of organization of algorithms, the rules of the game proposed by artificial intelligence, which can be quite similar to the pharmaceutical industry; That is to say, there will be many solutions that will have to be regulated, although then, of course, there will be drugs and alternatives. It will be a headache, but I think we will be able to regulate all this and in the end the most important thing is the sum of intelligences, natural intelligence, which is the predominant one, and artificial intelligence. In that equation between people and technology, it will lean towards people, it is common sense.

– What are the virtues that a leader should have?

– Well, first of all, the ability to influence, one begins to lead the day that his verb to influence outweighs his verb to command.

– Are there even more bosses than leaders?

– There is everything. But the need for leadership is increasingly evident because commanding is not enough. You can send everyone to training, but whether people learn is a personal decision.

– Innovation and entrepreneurship as axes in a changing and dizzying world. If you doubt, if you don’t bet, can you be considered dead?

– It is not advisable to manage our companies looking back, looking in the rearview mirror. We have to look forward and there we see that there are changes and we need to have the ability to adapt and create new value. The most difficult thing is to create the future for your clients and serve it half a step ahead; If you don’t serve it, someone else will. Therefore, innovation is this constant concern about how to create new value for customers and serve it at a time when the customer can already absorb it, which is half a step ahead, because if you go ten steps ahead, they tell you that you are a great innovator but they don’t buy anything from you.

– Isn’t there a lot of posturing, a lot of theory, a lot of talking and little doing in innovation?

– It is very easy to talk about it, but innovation is very difficult. Until now we have had a model based on the Californian model, on that of Silicon Valley, and it does not serve us as has been demonstrated. We have to completely rethink the ways of innovating and not base them on methodologies but on people and something that is never easy, which is taking risks. There is no innovation without risk, but the great risk is obviously not innovating.

– Is thinking about it with the sole objective of making money a mistake?

– A company is not a business, it is a community of people that also has to make money because otherwise it will close, but it is evident that the social component of the company is very important because you have to grow by making others grow.

– Are there magic formulas? Is everything made up?

– There are no magic formulas and we know that there are things that do not work, but I am increasingly convinced that in every company that raises its shutters every day there is a little secret, a little magic that resides in the soul of its people.

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