Why your CEO needs to watch a coding video

BrandPost By Bryan Kirschner
Sep 13, 20234 mins
Artificial IntelligenceMachine Learning

No, they don’t need to learn Python. But they do need to understand how truly easy it is to unlock the power of generative AI.

Credit: iStock/Lyndon Stratford

By Bryan Kirschner, Vice President, Strategy at DataStax

As a software developer and coding instructor, Ania Kubow is always informative and engaging. But watching her 30-minute video on “Vector Embeddings for Beginners” will be time well-spent for many people who have no intention of ever doing hands-on- coding.

Specifically, it’s a must-watch for anyone who wants to run a company–ie., CEOs.

And for anyone who wants to run a function within a modern enterprise–i.e., CIOs, CMOs, CHROs, and the like.

Yes, it gets into some nitty-gritty details about app development, but that’s part of its power. By clearly showing the real-world steps to build a generative AI app, powered by a vector database, Kubow hammers home something that every executive needs to understand in their bones.

The collision of the new generative AI tool and framework ecosystem with the existing modern development tool and framework ecosystem means that every developer has what they need to build those apps, too.

Non-coders might need an FAQ to explain a few of the finer details. But regardless, it provides a clear view into a new market context that can’t be hand-waved away or “we’ll see-ed” off into some three- to five-year future.

Gearing up to build an app that taps the power of highly capable foundation models is not hard for any modern developer. And vectorizing any data to power those apps–including unique-to-your organization pools of your customer interaction data, proprietary work product, open data, or all three–isn’t hard either.

Every creative, ambitious modern developer can do it.
And that’s good news, because generative AI has unlocked, for all practical purposes, infinite use cases: Any job function, business process, or customer interaction might benefit from generative AI.

A good way to start finding those opportunities in any organization is to ask where and how an “eager intern” or “autonomous agent” might raise productivity or create new value.

And just as developers can leverage proven patterns for building apps, executives can also leverage proven patterns for building an AI-powered organization.

Cross-functional teams, embedded close to customer experiences and business processes, have been observed to be a pattern for success with AI for a while–and the evidence continues to mount.

A good starting point in many organizations would be appointing each line of business general manager and functional leader (e.g., CHRO, CMO) as the executive sponsor of one such team. Let them test, learn, and–as the teams individually and collectively build their generative AI knowledge and skills–start playing to win by deploying to prod.

And a good goal? By this time next year, your executive team, including the CEO, should aim to spend 30 minutes (or maybe a whole afternoon) watching videos produced in-house describing the generative AI apps your people built and celebrating the awesome impact they are having.

Learn how DataStax helps organizations build real-time, AI-powered applications.

About Bryan Kirschner:

Bryan is Vice President, Strategy at DataStax. For more than 20 years he has helped large organizations build and execute strategy when they are seeking new ways forward and a future materially different from their past. He specializes in removing fear, uncertainty, and doubt from strategic decision-making through empirical data and market sensing.