5 main threats AI poses to business owners in 2023 (and how to survive)

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Entrepreneurs love artificial intelligence, and you can see why. While the technology has been around for a while, it is now at the forefront of their minds thanks to the popularity of ChatGPT, which launched in November 2022 and reached one million users in just five days. That kind of growth cannot be ignored, and its implications for modern businesses and the way they operate are huge.

While there are opportunities that entrepreneurs may want to pass up, there are also serious threats that can no longer be ignored. Here are the top 5 threats AI poses to entrepreneurs in 2023, and how you can prevent them from ruining your business.

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1. Your business will become obsolete in its current form

Chances are very high that AI will make the current iteration of your business obsolete in the near future. It will not exist as it is now because it will simply not be viable. If not, your company is losing product-market fit. Once upon a time, the market was willing to pay a certain price for your product or service. Thanks to the economic supply shock taking place, the market equilibrium has shifted and you are likely to be way off.

The writing is on the wall, evidenced by the advanced AI tools that pop up. End run aims to replace your accounting, accounting and accountancy software. Robin AI is the legal assistant in your pocket, drafting and editing contracts that used to cost thousands of dollars. Equivalents are devised in every industry and the future cannot be ignored. When it comes to content creation, agencies may have a problem. It’s now easier than ever to create high-quality productions in-house or without a home. Your agency may find itself losing customers because they use tools to replace your service.

The solution? Get started yourself. Explore what’s available and integrate new software to make your job better or reduce the costs needed to deliver and pass the savings on to your customers. Step up your game and increase the output. Show that what you do is better than AI. A junior executive with a subscription can’t compete with your experience and knowledge if you do your research and arm yourself properly.

2. There is an increased threat of cyber attacks

Cyberattacks have always been a risk, but we are in a new era of threat. We will see much more sophisticated malware and hacking attempts than ever before. AI programs are better at identifying security weaknesses, in part because they are more productive. With regulation further into the future, it’s the wild west out there. AutoGPT can take an instruction and just keep going, and it just gets more sophisticated. Imagine if an AI program was told to “ruin that company”, and that company was yours.

Then there is imitation. Malicious imitators have better technology. They can clone your voice, your face and your style. They can even trick your best friends into handing over money or giving information. Voice cloning software can mimic someone’s voice with less than five minutes of talking, and many entrepreneurs have this on their social media and YouTube. It wouldn’t be hard for someone to clone you, call you, and force your team into transactions you wouldn’t approve.

So what should you do? Understand what’s possible. Let your team, friends and family know and consider paying for an audit by an ethical hacker. AI can also improve security, so use that to your advantage rather than being left behind. If someone was determined to destroy your world, could they? Know how technology can be used to prevent it from actually happening.

3. Recruiting real talent will be incredibly challenging

AI recruiting tools exist that aim to help applicants. It is logical. The job search can take hours, with each employer requesting information in a different format. Applicants could spend all day rewriting their resume and cover letter to fill different roles. ChatGPT makes rewrites take minutes, which means application volume can skyrocket. Even email exchanges can be done with AI, avoiding spelling errors and realistically building rapport on your behalf as they book your interviews and answer questions.

Great for candidates, not so good for your hiring manager. Not only will you find that the number of applicants for each position becomes unmanageably high, but there is also a much higher chance of being catfished. If each applicant simply entered your job description into a tool and made up the answer they know you want to hear, how do you know who is right for the job? You may need to conduct more face-to-face interviews, which takes more time. Or run more trials, which entails additional resources. While you could use recruitment AI tools yourself, soon it will just be robots talking to robots and no one will know what’s what. In addition, they are easy to trick with clever clues.

There’s no hiding the solution here. It’s not so much about banning AI tools or trying to track them down, but more about being more creative with your requirements so you can find the exceptional candidates you know are around. If ChatGPT is a writing and comprehension assistant, stop setting up writing and comprehension tasks. Require people to impress you in other ways. Include more Easter eggs in role descriptions. Finally, don’t forget that fast engineer is now a very well paid role, someone who knows how to do it right is probably worth having on board.

4. Lazy team members will work their way up

While AI can increase the productivity of resourceful team members, it means lazy team members can get away with working less. And the low-integrity, unscrupulous workers will do just that. They have ChatGPT produced on their behalf and take shortcuts where they find them, resulting in lower quality work that may not be scrutinized. Instead of researching, writing, and editing their articles, they use a copywriting tool to work out five of them at once, then take the rest of the week off.

AI tools are great when they replace human processes, but not when the human who did them before pretends they still do. They certainly aren’t great when the job is done poorly. Most AI writing tools write like someone taking an exam, and while the output quantity can be improved, the quality can vary drastically. It’s definitely not what you want for your brand or customers. To make AI work for your business and not against it, you need a curious team eager to improve for the benefit of the hive.

If your team wants to co-create with AI, discuss it together. Talk about how they can increase their output, listen to their ideas on how to boost their work. Hear their productivity tips and solutions to win more press, impress more clients, or rank higher in search results. Empower them to use the tools to get better at their job, not just spend less time on it. Create your policies for what is and what is not acceptable and remember that everything you enter into ChatGPT is now public information. Apple, Amazon and other companies have banned it for fear of privacy concerns. Whatever you decide, be proactive.

5. You are losing business to a wave of new entrants

The barriers to entry that exist in your industry are quickly being broken down. Perhaps before you needed an office, a qualified team and years of experience to provide your service. Now you need less than an hour. Someone with an idea and a little AI knowledge can create a brand in just a few clicks Lookuse a website in 60 seconds 60sec site, and fill it with 100 high-quality pages using an SEO copywriting platform. They give the impression that they have been supplying the goods for decades. They can run ads on the page to rate the question and soon have the traffic and questions that should have been yours.

Imagine someone in an experimentation phase uses AI tools to set up ten different agencies in ten different niches, spends $1000 to market them all and see what sticks. The one that sticks around could be your next biggest competitor and get things out from under your nose in a much slicker way. Yes, this was possible before, but now it’s much faster and cheaper, so there’s less to lose.

What’s the antidote? Just be better. Take a fresh look at your site. Assess your online presence as a third party. If you were to start your business from scratch, what would you do differently? A simpler value proposition, a more compelling offering, better case studies, and a more seamless way for customers to get booked in might be just what you need. Make a conscious effort to improve your shop window to deter the next wave of entrepreneurs into going elsewhere.

Your business has a high chance of getting hacked, having trouble hiring, producing substandard work, and becoming obsolete in its current form, not to mention fighting off competition from all angles. While you could sit in the corner, cover your eyes and pray for it all to go away, that’s not in your nature and won’t do you any good. Be mindful of learning and applying each new technology to see what you can do. Know the location of the country so that nothing surprises you. Proactively survive each new threat and be one of the winners of this revolution.