ChatGPT has taken the world by storm and, according to Swiss Bank UBS, is the fastest growing app of all time.
It took TikTok nine months to reach 100 million users; ChatGPT reached that number only two months after its launch.This generative AI tool has some game-changing features, and many of us haven’t even scratched the surface of its true capabilities.
And it is not the only one, there are also many other generative AI tools becoming more advanced each day, including Bing AI chat, Google Bard AI and Microsoft Co-Pilot.
The technology is still so new and constantly evolving, leaving leaders scrambling to understand the tools and how they can add value to their business.
What can ChatGPT do?
So, what role could ChatGPT have in strategy development?
It can write a strategy. Provide the specific details of what you are looking for and in just a few seconds it will populate a strategy that on the surface makes sense.
The better the prompt, the better the outcome, as the strategy can be refined based on key parameters you provide. It is not perfect, but it can provide useful strategy examples given specific data sets provided.
ChatGPT can quickly bring leaders up to speed on the pros and cons of different metrics before they are baked into the strategic plan. It is a great way to help leaders identify and think through any unintended consequences of using certain metrics.
ChatGPT can quickly bring leaders up to speed on the pros and cons of different metrics before they are baked into the strategic plan.
It can save time conducting market research and analysis to identify trends, competitive landscape and customer preferences. However, the jury is still out on the quality and comprehensiveness of the insights.
As ChatGPT’s information precedes September 2021, leaders may not have the latest insights they need to make informed decisions.
Even when ChatGPT gets updated for 2023, leaders must fact check insights and recommendations or risk building a strategy on a fragile foundation. I suggest leaders trade away time saved for quality research and insights.
ChatGPT can also help with scenario planning by generating multiple scenarios based on different assumptions and variables.
Plenty of concerns
As good as Chat GPT is, it isn’t perfect. It does make mistakes and has some biases that need to be considered. A key concern is that the use of generative AI has the potential to disrupt a leader’s deep connection with the strategy through a lack of personal involvement in its development.
Automating part of the process may save time initially, but can take up more time later as leaders need to sell the strategy to others in the organization. If there’s one thing that 35 years working in the strategy execution space has taught me, it’s that strategy buy-in matters.
ChatGPT will not do the thinking for you. It can create a strategic plan, but it might not be the right plan. It can share valuable insights, but not in a way that develops focus, alignment and commitment by a critical mass of leaders.
ChatGPT will not do the thinking for you. It can create a strategic plan, but it might not be the right plan.
One reason to involve leaders in the strategic conversations is that they ought to have the critical thinking capability to identify insights, spot weak signals and make connections that aren’t immediately obvious.
ChatGPT will continue to improve in this space, but leaders shouldn’t underestimate the value of developing strategic thinking capability.
In the future, leaders will need to develop new pathways in strategy formulation and in building commitment to execution. These pathways should embrace generative AI, but correct for the mistakes and biases of it while improving connection to the inherent logic of the strategy so that there is commitment to achievement.
ChatGPT is a valuable tool, and it does have an increasingly important role to play in strategy development. However, leaders still need to engage their team in the right strategic conversations. This is critical to develop an intellectually convincing, emotionally compelling strategy that inspires teams to achieve great things together.