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11.04.2023

Digitalisation

3 min read

A human hand and a technological hand, their index fingers touching.

The impact of artificial intelligence on internal communication

Artificial intelligence and tools like ChatGPT represent opportunities for internal communication within companies. They bring positive implications for professionals in this field, as they can benefit from the streamlined and efficient communication facilitated by these technologies.

In 2030, the Lehmann Group envisions a future where an artificial intelligence-powered chatbot controls internal communication. This advanced system efficiently delivers crucial information and daily goals to employees every morning. In times of crisis, the chatbot ensures that all employees receive critical updates instantaneously. Additionally, the AI utilizes sensors in the factory to gather relevant insights on productivity, which then serves as the foundation for the following day's briefing.

While this thought experiment by the Lehmann Group may seem unsettling, it reflects the potential future trajectory influenced by current advancements such as ChatGPT and similar technologies. However, it's also essential to consider AI's existing capabilities in internal communication. So, what can AI already accomplish today?

Artificial intelligence: catalyst for communicators

Top management now recognizes the importance of strong internal communication for a company's success. However, ensuring skilled internal communication requires significant time and resources. This is where AI comes in, offering a potential solution to streamline and optimize processes.

An Infographic showcasing applications and limitations of utilizing AI Tools

AI tools currently save time reading texts, but their research capabilities are still limited. However, supporters of AI are confident that this will soon change.

AI engines like GPT-4, coupled with the ChatGPT interface, can serve as a catalyst for skilled communicators. These tools excel in formulating key points, editing, condensing, and summarizing texts. Furthermore, ChatGPT and similar technologies are a valuable source of inspiration when encountering a creative block. They can provide concrete examples to make abstract topics more relatable, generate headings, and compile frequently asked questions on a particular subject. This makes them ideal for streamlining routine communication tasks.

A lack of trust in artificial intelligence

A study conducted by TU Berlin confirms that most people are suspicious of AI. A cross-national study by KPMG, a consulting firm, further reveals that only a quarter of respondents expressed trust in artificial intelligence. Additionally, the Titanium Trust Report from 2019 highlighted the 'fear of losing control associated with AI' among many individuals.

Suspicion and fear of AI

Skepticism towards artificial intelligence is not without reason. Several factors contribute to this mistrust. Firstly, dystopian films have influenced our perception of AI, depicting humans engaged in battles against machines. Secondly, the lack of transparency regarding the decision-making process of AI systems has led to uncertainty. Moreover, certain AI tools have been known to disseminate false information, presenting it convincingly as factual, further eroding trust. The challenge lies in the fact that trust is a crucial factor in internal communication.

Chat history with ChatGPT showing that AI can be flawed and creates facts.

The example shows how ChatGPT fudges truths. An Emotional Escape Room is by no means an emotional puzzle, but a room in your own home that invites you to relax.

Transparency: how trust in AI is created

An interesting observation is that people tend to place their trust in artificial intelligence in cases where fair decisions are involved, particularly when those decisions directly affect them. The study conducted by TU Berlin confirms this finding. However, this trust is contingent upon transparent evaluation criteria. Another key finding from the KPMG study is that a significant majority of respondents desire stronger legal regulations for AI. Transparency and clear regulations can enhance trust in AI and strengthen the trend in internal communication.

After realizing that the Earth is not the center of the universe, humans have descended from animals, and human actions are not always purely logical, AI could become humanity's fourth major challenge. With its superior speed, data processing capabilities, and ability to make better decisions, artificial intelligence has emerged as a formidable force that surpasses human intelligence.

Jonathan Fasel, CEO of Fasel&Fasel

Honest exchange in direct conversation remains the strongest factor for successful internal communication. And we will have more time for that thanks to AI."

Jonathan Fasel

Journalist and communications consultant at fasel & fasel

When emotions are missing: the gap in AI content

Despite its advancements, artificial intelligence still lacks a particular authenticity when it comes to empathetic, emotional, and personal communication. AI-generated texts often sound generic and occasionally naïve, lacking the depth of life experience. Humans can perceive this gap when reading such texts.

However, there are meaningful ways to utilize AI in internal communication. Acknowledging that AI will not replace humans in this domain is vital. Instead, AI can assist communicators in performing their roles better, faster, and more efficiently. Humans and machines can collaborate and complement each other, leveraging their respective strengths. AI can provide quick insights from vast amounts of data, aid in decision-making, and generate initial text frameworks with relevant information. Subsequently, humans can bring their empathy and real-life understanding to refine the content and messages, ensuring they have the impact needed to resonate with employees.

Tasks at a glance: how AI helps in internal communication

  • Brainstorming
  • Summarizing
  • First text frameworks
  • Finding examples
  • Drafting headings
  • Translations
  • Creating FAQs
  • Quick insights from mountains of data
  • Making decisions
  • Automating routine tasks

In 2030, the Lehmann Group will make every effort to establish trust in AI-based solutions among its employees. Although AI-generated informational texts and news may sound generic, this will become less significant. This is because, ultimately, honest and regular exchanges through direct conversations remain the most potent drivers of successful internal communication. With the support of AI, employees will have more time for meaningful interactions in the realm of internal communication.

Disclaimer: This text was written without AI support.

Flip Expert Talk: "Duel or Duet? What AI tools do in IC".

Hype or help? In the webinar, neuroflash founder Dr. Jonathan Mall and communications consultant Jonathan Fasel discuss the relevance of artificial intelligence in internal communication. Also: the live duel "AI vs. Communicator" - who writes better?

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