Workers Are Concerned About AI Taking Their Jobs. Should Managers Be Too?The workplace tech company Asana's new AI teammates can help assign work, research clients, and strategize


Across a range of industries, including trucking, screenwriting, and software development, workers have grown increasingly worried that artificial intelligence will eventually take over their jobs. But are they the only ones who should be concerned? A recent announcement by the workplace management software company Asana indicates that managers may also face automation of some of their duties. The San Francisco-based company is introducing what it calls "AI teammates," essentially chatbots that can provide advice on priorities, enhance workflows, and even take action on certain tasks. 

These AI teammates leverage Asana's proprietary "work graph" data model, which connects tasks and workflows to higher-level company objectives. As a result, the bots are capable of assigning projects, triaging tasks, and identifying issues that could impede team success—activities traditionally handled by managers. According to a survey last year, 49 percent of CEOs believe that "most" or "all" of their role could be entirely automated.

Asana reports that an outdoor advertising firm has already begun using AI teammates to automate parts of its request process, such as delegating tasks to specific employees and assisting with client research. Additionally, a cybersecurity firm has utilized the software to enforce internal naming conventions and translate content to maintain brand consistency. Asana also teased an upcoming AI chat tool, set to launch later this month, which will be able to answer workplace questions like, "Who at my company knows about this topic?"

Companies like Google, Amazon, and Microsoft have recently introduced similar AI tools, according to The Verge. While AI technology still has a long way to go before it can replace human labor completely, supporters believe it will primarily serve to augment rather than replace human workers. Asana's new tool, for example, still requires "humans in the loop every step of the way."

"The future of work is about combining humans and AI to work together effortlessly," said Asana co-founder and CEO Dustin Moskovitz in a statement about the AI teammates product. "This is how we drive productivity and innovation gains that add value to the bottom line." 

Despite these optimistic views, rank-and-file workers have often expressed skepticism about the future of their employment. With the AI industry increasingly interested in automating higher-level roles, managers might soon share these concerns. A recent New York Times headline even suggested, "If A.I. Can Do Your Job, Maybe It Can Also Replace Your C.E.O."  

Congratulations, new college graduates! You’ve worked diligently and surmounted remarkable challenges, including a global pandemic that paused much of the world. Now, it’s time to don your cap and gown, join the commencement ceremony, and reflect on your achievements with pride[citation:10]. However, while graduation day is joyous, the following day can be sobering and stressful.

Not to dampen your spirits, but the day after graduation marks the beginning of your job search[citation:10]. Allow me to share some advice: I bootstrapped BairesDev into a unicorn when I was not much older than you are now, growing it to approximately 4,000 software developers across Latin America[citation:10]. We review nearly 10,000 applications daily and only hire the top 1%, providing us with unique insights into hiring that I’d like to offer.

Here’s the most profound insight: In the long run, your college degree won’t matter as much as you think.

I understand this may seem unfair, especially considering the sacrifices you’ve made, including paying hefty tuition[citation:10]. Most of you pursued these degrees, hoping that a prestigious name and logo on your diploma would secure a high-paying job and a successful career.

Unfortunately, this is not entirely the case anymore, primarily due to artificial intelligence (AI). AI is rapidly advancing, and its impact is evident across various industries—from law to medicine to technology. In this evolving landscape, you’ll need a significantly different skill set to thrive. 

We’ve identified five key skills shared by our most successful employees, helping them excel and advance rapidly.

**Adaptability and Resilience**: The primary test in today’s job market is how well you navigate tough situations. Major industries can change overnight, and those who succeed are the ones who quickly adapt and create new strategies in response to setbacks. This skill isn’t taught at even the finest institutions.

**Critical Thinking**: Irving Janis’s study on corporate and government decisions that went wrong highlights “groupthink” as a primary cause[citation:10]. Effective critical thinking involves challenging consensus, which can reveal opportunities others miss.

**Creativity**: Essential for problem-solving, creativity helps in identifying new market needs. Cultivate it by collaborating with team members, trying innovative approaches, and leveraging your unique experiences and viewpoints.

**Emotional Intelligence**: More than controlling emotions, it involves understanding and managing them to create a positive work environment, retain talent, and secure clients.

**Effective Communication**: Start by learning to listen and choose your words carefully to build meaningful relationships with colleagues, clients, and leaders. Though we live in a world full of digital communications, effective communication remains crucial.

Congratulations again on your graduation. Now, focus on developing the skills that will set you apart. Cultivate those that help you overcome challenges, innovate, and act with awareness. While your degree is an important milestone, your skills will ultimately propel you to success.

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