Who would’ve thought the day would come where Number 5 really is alive?
You can’t help but think that when you read through the large number of articles about how there are machines out there capable of taking over many jobs currently done by people.
From Taxi drivers to Financial Advisors to waiters, many have made predictions about the types of roles that will be replaced by machines in the future. You only need to do a quick Google search using the words “machines can do our job” to see the abundance of articles on this subject.
I’ve no doubt that machines could replace people in many jobs, and that the technology itself can provide the required level of accuracy and reliability.
However, I think the tech industry has underestimated one very crucial thing.
Essentially, I’m talking about people’s willingness to accept and deal with a machine, especially in businesses where personalised service is traditionally so crucial. If people reject this technology, it will struggle to get off the ground in certain areas.
It comes down to this – people just like dealing with people.
It’s for this reason that many of us attend networking events – because we like dealing with people.
We like creating business relationships with people.
If businesses started sending machines or robots to such events, how much longer do you think networking events would continue to exist?
It’s for this same reason many of us deal with certain businesses – because (most of the time) we like the people who work there and the service they provide.
If your favourite restaurant, despite their good quality food, replaced their Manager, Maître d‘ or waiters (who you’ve come to know over a long period of time) with machines – would you continue to go there?
Sure, a machine can provide personalised service too and be programmed to remember this, or do that, even self-learn. But it’s just not the same as dealing with a real person.
I think there’s still some way to go in terms of society’s acceptance of this technology before we’ll start seeing machines and robots being placed in jobs currently held by people. I’m not saying it will never happen, but I think we’re getting a bit ahead of ourselves about the predicted timeframes in which it will happen as the implications this will have on all of us – people and governments, businesses and customers – are far too great.
But when it does happen and the machines eventually do take over, should future networking events also turn into a mechanised affair, I’ll make sure I send my PR Machine along.