Q&A With Peter Diamandis

By: Heather King

Prior to Shared Services & Outsourcing Week Live 2020, we had the opportunity to ask our keynote speaker, Peter Diamandis, some of our most top of mind questions. Diamandis is the founder and executive chairman of the XPrize Foundation, the executive founder of Singularity University, and the author of a number of books on exponential technologies.

We were over the moon to have Peter Diamandis answer of questions via video and now you can read the full blog with his answers below.

What do you think big businesses today are not looking at closely enough or taking into strategic decision-making in order to be successful as they can?

I don't think big business realizes the power that entrepreneurs and small businesses have to disrupt them. Today, a small team of individuals using Software as a Service and AI as a Service can come up with new capabilities, new business models that will disrupt old models. So, for example, why didn't Hertz and Avis come up with Uber? Why didn't Hilton and Hyatt come up with Airbnb? The day before something is truly a breakthrough it's a crazy idea and large businesses don't look at crazy ideas. They're risk adverse. Well, entrepreneurs have very little to lose and it's not that entrepreneurs are smarter it's that they're trying more and more crazy ideas, faster and faster.

Robotic process automation and intelligent automation has been the buzz phrase around the business service industry for the last five years. What do you think is going to transform business services in the next five years?

Between 2020 and 2025 we're going to see truly the impact of artificial intelligence and machine learning. Many individuals from Elon Musk to Sundar the CEO of Alphabet to Mark Cuban to the CEO of IBM, have all said what I think I would paraphrase in the following, “in the next decade we're going to see two types of companies: those that are fully utilizing AI and those that are bankrupt.” Artificial Intelligence is going to become so fundamental to the operation of a company and to its success, that it is similar to whether you use the web or email 20 years ago. Companies that are not utilizing AI in full capacity are going to miss the opportunity to truly scale and provide a product or service that is so personalized to the customer that they can't do without it.

You speak a lot about being passionate and loving what you do in order to be successful, how can people love and be passionate about their role even if they aren't in a glamourous one?

I think it's critically important that individuals find their massively transformative purpose and pursue it. No matter what you're doing there is a way to do it in a way that is joyful. It's understanding how do you do something ten times better and if you're in a job that you truly do not like, it's time to go find another job. Go find something that you love and that you feel that you're adding value to the world and in which you feel you're doing the very best that you can.

What are some things that businesses can do today that excite you for the next 12 months?

Businesses today need to embrace artificial intelligence and machine learning. I can't say that more strongly enough. They need to look at how they use software as a service and AI as a service. One of things you can do is go and hire an individual, probably someone in their early 20s or early 30s, that understands software as a service, AI as a service, has utilized it and then comes into your organization and looks at what are those things that you're doing repetitively, those things that could be done by software or AI. Allow the people in your organization to do those things which humans do better, like relating to each other, not necessarily you know doing things in a repetitive or doing things that are dirty, dangerous or dull.

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