As technology continues to transform industries and the human-AI convergence rapidly gains speed, it’s becoming increasingly apparent that we must hone in on what makes us individually unique and leverage innate abilities to maintain relevance. Luckily, there are several uniquely human skills that AI, hopefully, will never be allowed to develop:
Emotional intelligence: Humans can understand, express, and regulate emotions, as well as perceive and respond to the feelings of others in ways that AI cannot.
Complex problem-solving: Humans can solve complex and ambiguous problems that require reasoning, judgment, and decision-making based on context, intuition, and experience. AI is helpful in decision-making, but is limited by the availability of large amounts of referenceable data.
Interpersonal communication: Humans can communicate with others in a nuanced and empathetic way, using body language, tone, and nonverbal cues, which AI cannot yet fully grasp.
Adapting to new situations: Humans can adapt to new and unfamiliar situations by applying their knowledge, experience, and creativity in ways AI struggles to do.
Judgment and decision-making: Humans can make judgments and decisions based on ethical, moral, and social considerations that are difficult for AI to ‘reason’.
Empathy: Humans can empathize with others, showing understanding, compassion, and concern for their feelings and experiences, all emotions that are unattainable by AI.
Situational awareness: Humans can understand the context of a situation and adjust their behavior accordingly, whereas AI struggles to understand the context.
Leadership and teamwork: Humans can lead and work effectively in teams by building relationships, managing conflict, inspiring others, and adapting to the team's needs. AI is a solo show, incapable of leading or interpersonally connecting.
Strategic thinking: Humans can analyze complex situations, make connections, and develop long-term strategies; AI is undoubtedly helpful in analyzing data and identifying patterns and trends, but it lacks the creativity and intuition needed for strategic thinking.
Creativity: Humans can think creatively and develop original ideas; AI responds to a prompt and is only as creative as the data it's sourced from.
Not only is this list great news but it points us directly to a “relevance recipe.” Essentially, if humans can build and enhance these imperative skills, they can ensure relevancy. Now that we have our list of ingredients, how do we go about sourcing and strengthening them? If you ask ChatGPT, it says the most effective way to learn new skills is to practice. However, humans know that not all practice is the same, nor equally productive. Effective practice requires a safe environment that gradually becomes more challenging and evolves based on the individual's decisions and results. Learners need to receive targeted feedback along the way, reflect on their performance, and then be given the chance to apply their learning. This is called Experiential Learning.
Experiential learning is a process of learning by doing. It involves all the elements effective practice requires: taking action, reflecting on the experience, and receiving feedback, all within a contextually relevant, safe environment. Rather than just reading or listening to information, learners actively engage in the learning process. They can take risks, make mistakes, and experiment with new ways of thinking. Learners improve their skills and gain self-confidence by reflecting on their mistakes and adjusting their actions. This active engagement in learning creates "muscle memory," increasing the likelihood of applying the new skill effectively on the job and in daily life.
The increasing prevalence of technology and AI has highlighted the importance of developing uniquely human skills. Ironically enough, thanks to AI, we now have a cost-effective way to develop experiential learning programs to strengthen and build these uniquely human-skills. AI has driven down development costs, making the most effective form of learning widely accessible. Previously, creating simulations for experiential learning was expensive, challenging to deploy, and difficult to adapt. But, with the help of AI and new authoring platforms, such as SimGate, experiential learning can now be created as quickly as eLearning and at a cost similar to VILT.
Aiding humans in developing essential skills and confidence is critical to navigating the future of work. Amidst the excitement and uncertainty of the great human-AI convergence, it’s comforting to know that we have the key to the “relevance recipe”: experiential learning.