The Fourth Industrial Revolution is transforming the world of work, with artificial intelligence (AI) leading the way. Already, 65% of workplace recruiters use AI to speed up their hiring processes, thanks to tools like ChatGPT and matchmaking algorithms. However, the potential of AI isn’t limited to hiring; it can also leverage career networking relationships.
AI is no exception. It can optimize networking communications by analyzing big data to identify trends and patterns, enabling users to create personalized messages, identify common interests, and engage with their contacts on a deeper level.
In this sense, AI can also automate relationship building. There is a notable rise in AI applications that automate many aspects of relationship building, such as staying informed on our connections’ interests and activities. Salesforce’s Einstein is one example of a relationship insight software tool powered by AI, which helps professionals gather critical information about their clients from various data sources for improved interactions. Similarly, Hubspot’s ChatSpot combines a large language model with the company’s client relationship management (CRM) platform. ChatSpot enables users to speak with their AI CRM to organize their contacts, generate reports, and much more.
However, it’s essential to recognize that AI cannot replace genuine human connection in networking. While AI-generated content can assist in crafting tailored messages, it still requires human input and fact-checking to ensure the content is accurate and unbiased. Face-to-face interactions remain vital in networking, as more than 80% of professionals believe that meeting in person helps build stronger, longer-lasting professional relationships. Trust is a critical component of any relationship, and it’s best cultivated through empathy and ensuring that the person we are connecting with feels heard; all of which is best achieved in-person, where we can feel the other person’s presence better than through a screen.
Incorporating AI in career networking relationships is becoming a pivotal aspect. By analyzing vast amounts of data, AI can optimize networking communications and automate relationship building. However, it’s crucial to balance AI with human interaction, as face-to-face interactions are critical in networking.
By adopting a hybrid approach, professionals can use AI to support and enhance their networking efforts, creating more fruitful relationships. When balancing AI and human intelligence in sales, for example, CEO and founder of SalesChoice Cindy Gordon found that “AI increases leads and appointments by more than 50% while at the same time reducing costs by up to 60%, with AI creating more value for sales reps by freeing up their time to spend more time on closing deals.” Although AI can find leads and accelerate processes, the human-touch remains as the catalyst in nurturing relationships.