William Webster

written by

William Webster

Researcher, Avoncourt Partners GmbH

Culture Blog - Jan 7, 2019

Pairing Humans and AI for Excellence

The core precept of David Allen’s “Getting Things Done” methodology is that the human brain is more adept for processing and not for storage. Allen’s insightful action proposal is to brain-dump all to-do’s and not keep them swarming in your head. Oversight is lost, accountability becomes difficult and frustration ensues.

There’s a step beyond the brain-dump which will prove most profitable in harnessing brain power. It is called strategic thinking. Critical thinking and incisiveness will help get to the root of why things should be done, yet strategic thinking helps develop motivation and tactical steps to achieving the identified goal.

It is in strategic thinking that the human mind and artificial intelligence will pair for excellence.

Businessman analyzing financial report data of the company operations (balance sheet, income statement) on virtual computer screen with business charts, fintech

Over the last two centuries, many employees faced the prospect of machines taking over their jobs. For strategic thinking, especially in accounting and finance, professionals should anticipate the reality of the 4th Industrial Revolution without fear. When machines take over repetitive, time-consuming and redundant tasks, it will free human finance professionals to do higher level and more lucrative analyses and counseling for their clients.

The success of digital transformation in all sectors, especially accounting and finance, is pairing people and machines together, allowing each one to contribute in areas in which they are most skilled. Machines can efficiently and accurately analyze a tremendous amount of data. They can spot patterns in the data and learn how to treat various kinds of data. With machines taking care of the mind-numbing and monotonous tasks, human accounting and financial professionals will be free to take on tasks they are better suited for.

The power of strategic thought in the human mind, accompanied by data analyses as output of big data machines, often even with the machines’ recommendations for action, will be the future of finance and accounting. Incredibly precise advice, tailored to each client’s needs, will be the norm.

The human brain is not only not meant for storage. It is also not meant for mere processing. It is designed for creativity, for out-of-the-box daring, for strategic thinking. And there’s no better tool for a profession to reach excellence than a bot.