10 Powerful Ways George Trujillo Transforms Digital Leadership

George Trujillo Cover
George Trujillo

 

Respected values-based digital leader, cultivating inspired talent to deliver business outcomes.

Passionate in bringing out the best in team members, growing data cultures and fostering a digital mindset. Strong experience in developing data strategies, leading data initiatives, growing data cultures and executing data governance/quality programs. Recognized industry expertise in data governance, data quality, data architecture/integration and cloud architecture.

Published book author, and writer for CIO Magazine and other executive platforms. Internationally recognized speaker at Gartner, Oracle World, VMworld and CIO/CDO executive events and conferences. Active advocate for data governance, data culture, real-time and generative AI.

INDUSTRY RECOGNITIONS:

Google Analytics Council, VMware vExpert, Oracle Double ACE, Sun Ambassador for Sun Microsystems, VMware Certified Instructor, MySQL’s Socrates Award and MySQL Certified DBA.

User Community leadership: Independent Oracle Users Group (IOUG) Board of Directors, President of IOUG Cloud SIG, Oracle Fusion Council, Oracle Beta Leadership Council, Elected to International Oracle User Group’s “Oracles of Oracle”​ Circle and Master Oracle Presenter.

Interview Transcript George Trujillo

Richard Lowe  00:00

Good day. My name is Richard Lowe, and this is conversations with influencers. I’m here with George, can you pronounce that name? George?

George Trujillo  00:08

Sure, Trujillo

Richard Lowe  00:10

George Trujillo, who is a data and AI strategist who uses a values-based approach for leading digital transformations. For the last 12 years, he has been focused on architecting or leading data monetization and digital initiatives. Before that he was the CEO of a professional services and technical training company for 12 years. He’s a published author, a contributor to CIO magazine, and an internationally recognized speaker at CIO CTO events, as well as Oracle, VMware and Gartner conferences, to name a few. Get ready for our conversation with this digital leader. And before we get into that, I am Richard Lowe, the writing King, and I am a ghostwriter. And I’m also a writing coach, and a LinkedIn branding expert. So, if you need help with any of those, come see me. All right, George, introduce yourself.

George Trujillo  00:58

Hey, thanks, Richard. I appreciate the invitation. And I’m, I’m excited to be here. So yeah, I’m an independent digital strategist, and practitioner. And what I really do is focus on working with organizations to help them with their digital initiatives and their transformations.

Richard Lowe  01:16

It sounds wonderful. Yeah, back when I was at Trader Joe’s, I, before there was a name for it, I was I transformed the company digitally a couple of times, we went from paper, and printers and literally NCR machines, you know, remember those two, two being on a computer, and then we could translate, then we did a second digital transformation that to make that a little more modern, but only at the back end. Interesting enough, we didn’t transform the front end. So, the customer facing side never transformed. But the warehouses and the logistics and things all, I was in charge of all of that. So, I will know what you’re talking about. And so, what do you have an approach for digital transformation? Mostly? Tell me about that?

George Trujillo  02:00

Yeah, one of the things that I really believe in is using a values-based approach as leader. And the reason I do that is one, it’s personal. And it’s also beneficial to the organization in terms of, it’s important when you’re building a team and your directs to have a shared vision to have a core common set of values and beliefs that everybody’s aligned with. And it’s that core set of values that you build, where you create alignment and transparency, that really builds inspired teams. And part of that part of that is personal beliefs in building a high-quality working environment. But part of it is also whenever I look at organizations that really have incredible digital transformations, they’re all seem to be very human centric, focused, and seem to inspire their teams and their organization.

Richard Lowe  02:50

I see. So, what do you mean by values oriented?

George Trujillo  02:54

So, my values, if you look at, you know, whatever we do in life, a lot of the decisions we make, it’s based upon our core values, our morals, and that influences our decisions. So, what are the core values that you’re building from an organization, and you’re building within your team, and you’re defining as part of the business transformation that you’re undergoing. So, when you can have your team aligned on, these are our core values, you can basically empower them to make more decisions, because they understand what those core values are. And they’re making decisions and leading teams based upon those core values.

Richard Lowe  03:31

Can you give me a for instance of some values that you would have in

George Trujillo  03:37

there, there’s a couple different ones are one in terms of inspiring people, I believe that, you know, with my directs that they see that I’m invested in their careers, I’m invested in them be more successful in growing. And when I say that to them, then all my actions with them should reflect that. And they see that he really is focused on my career, my skills, my personal development. So that’s the core value of, of caring about your team members. And I expect them to pass that on to the teams that they lead or understanding that what we’re trying to do in our digital transformation, is really accelerate the speed that the business can execute on. And what does that mean? So, when organizations and teams are making decisions on technology, on talent that they’re bringing in, that they’re all aligned in terms of what we’re trying to accomplish. And part of those core values kind of sum up to a shared vision that aligns everyone.

Richard Lowe  04:36

I see. Yes, I’ve actually ghostwritten several books on digital transformation myself. And I as I said, I did want to Trader Joe’s, and that was always a big part of everything was the values that digital transformation doesn’t work. If you don’t go with people, first is PPP. And people are always first and go ahead.

George Trujillo  05:01

And I spend a lot of time talking to executives and CIOs and CTOs. And you ask them, you know, what is important to you. And you never get very far in a conversation with a C suite leader when they don’t talk about culture and people. So you need to lead with that. And I’ve just found that, you know, when we send around a values-based approach, it’s an anchor that we can all align to.

Richard Lowe  05:24

I see, I see. So, what other things do you do in digital transformation? I know cybersecurity is really hot right now. That is that part of your digital transformation projects?

George Trujillo  05:34

Well, from my perspective, when I’ve led projects has been very data and AI focused. So in terms of how do we modernize our data strategy? And that leads into what is the data culture that you’re building? What does data literacy mean, in your organization? You know, how are you achieving data governance and data quality? And so those are just terms, but that leads into how effective an organization is with data. So for example, it doesn’t matter how much data you have, if people can’t discover and find the data. And then second, it, once they find the data, can they understand the data? Is there tribal knowledge? Can they see how other people are using that data, how they become effective. So, all the things about data governance and building data quality, basically need to be part of any data initiative. And so, it sounds like digital. Go ahead.

Richard Lowe  06:28

Sorry, it sounds like I didn’t mean to interrupt, it sounds like you’d be breaking down silos and companies doing that,

George Trujillo  06:35

you know, one of the one of the key factors of success, and one of the key factors that I see that really impacts companies is for 12 years or more, I’ve seen whenever there is a very vertical siloed effect, it has massive impacts on the business. And you know, I seen as I got deeper and deeper and had more responsibility, and initiatives, the more you work on a horizontal perspective, versus vertical, the more you can create impact across an organization. One of the things that that I’ve seen is that the more you can build a standardization across an organization, the more you can have impact across that organization. And the only way you can do that is you have to create an alignment. So, I’ve seen that to be a digital leader, you can’t be on one edge or another or in one group, you have to basically be in the middle, and support all the different lines of business. And people see that you are in the middle in terms of driving this trans transformation.

Richard Lowe  07:37

I see. Yes, I did some work for a company that was that had just digitally transformed. And one of the things they found in their analysis was the silos that were very heavily siloed by region. And reporting totals didn’t add up because they were siloed. So one region would report they sold this many units. And another regional report says they sold this many units and then the central company, the main company with the report this many units, and it didn’t add up, that they didn’t match once they did a trans digital transformation that was all centralized. So of course it matched. And that was a big problem to them before the transformation.

George Trujillo  08:16

I think one of the things that Richard that I see that really gets missed in terms of the impact of that vertical approach is data is not vertical. Even though we think of that way we think of data as being in silos in databases, or data warehouses or big data. But that’s not actually how data works in an organization. data flows from all kinds of different sources. And through data ingestion, it moves into your organization, and it may reside inside of a database, but then that data can flow into additional data Mart’s or data warehouses. And then people need to integrate and aggregate that data. So, if you really look at what makes a healthy ecosystem, in terms of generating insights, it’s how that data flows through the entire organization. So, if you look at data as like a value supply chain, throughout entire organization, the more you have strong vertical silos, the more you inhibit the healthy growth of that data organization.

Richard Lowe  09:18

And that’s exactly what this company found. And that’s what they worked to resolve was getting rid of those strong vertical and making a more of a horizontal structure. Of course, they couldn’t get rid of silos entirely. Because I guess regions worked very well for them. But they were able to make the data, at least be more I guess, there was homogeneous between all of the various regions. And the data level, the concept of regions kind of faded away. And it was only just tags and things in the data.

George Trujillo  09:53

Yeah, and two things that really helped me is that you kind of fill things you’ve got to get filling. But what really brought it home for me is I was working for an organization as a global architect and strategist. And I met with corporate, and they said, we really want you to go out and talk to our customers. And I started talking to the customers, and I’d talk to, you know, directors and managing directors and how their projects and initiatives were going. And I would see green, fantastic things are going great. And then I talked to VPS. And they’d be more like, well, it’s kind of maybe a little orange. And then I’d talk to the C suite, and it would be red. I’m going wait, it’s the same organization? Why have I seen three different levels of success. And I realized that when I talked to at the project and use case level, they’re looking very vertically. And the higher you go up in an organization, the more they’re looking at things horizontally. And as I went out, and I spoke to business leaders, I talked to the CMO, VPs and licensed lines of business, I asked a lot of questions in terms of what are your challenges? What are your issues? What could you do better? If you had x? What could you do more effectively? And the more they addressed their challenges and concerns, the more came back to it was an unhealthy data ecosystem, in terms of data was being stopped in different silos. It wasn’t a healthy flow. So that was just like an epiphany for me, I’m going, of course, how could we do it any differently. And then I had another role where all data reported my office. And so when you looked at the organization, it wasn’t just the databases, the data warehouse, that data engineering, it was how data flow through that ecosystem, that really determined the speed that companies can execute to, and just as importantly, the data quality. So, all the things have just reinforced that it’s the healthy ecosystem that wins, not just picking a technology, or building out a silo. And probably the biggest thing that I’ve seen consistently that that doubles down on that approach, is that when you have a vertical approach, the success only exists in the vertical silo, it doesn’t grow out horizontal.

Richard Lowe  12:10

Yeah, that makes sense. The, some of the companies I’ve looked at, in as consultant in his writing, they had the problem with these verticals where they also had vertical, IT departments. So, each vertical had its own IT department, and they were very concerned about losing their jobs, and their careers that they built, much as if they were doing a, you know, an acquisition and a merger, which kind of they were. And that’s where the people thing comes in, you have to be concerned with the feelings of people, or they can go along and sabotage your project, because they don’t want to lose their jobs.

George Trujillo  12:46

Yeah, you know, some advice I got years ago that stayed with me is that an organization cannot move faster than they’re comfortable moving towards. And to me, part of that is you’ve got to get people’s buy in, you’ve got to educate them, you’ve got to spend time with them. And let them see the importance of this the business advantage and get their buy in. Because you know, when I work on things, from a technical perspective, everybody understands you can have data drift, you can have process drift, and you can have model drift. But to your point, when I see dysfunction, I see strategy drift. And what I mean by that is you might have a strategic initiative. But downstream teams can change that strategy by saying you know, what were under, we don’t have enough resources, we have to pick the old technology because the why or we’re not ready to deal with that there’s too much complexity. And they can basically little by little bank decisions that basically start impacting the overall strategy. And I’ve seen that consistently in companies that are, are having challenges. And I don’t see that in organizations that are being successful, which again, is back to your point is, it’s about people and you’ve got to get their buy in. I’ve spent the last year and a half spending a lot of time with executives and CIOs and CTOs and at dinners. And when I talk to people at the VP level, one of the things that I hear consistently when I say, you know, what are your some of your main challenges. And one of the things I consistently hear is a lack of a shared vision and distributed thinking. And so, as your kind of I think, highlighting is getting away from those vertical silos is extremely hard. It’s extremely difficult. And it requires a tremendous amount of effort and time to do that. But you know, I challenge How do you have an organizational business transformation without addressing that successfully?

Richard Lowe  14:57

Right, right. And I think that becomes a call Natural transformation as well as a business transformation, you have to transform the culture before you can transform the business or it in fact, technology actually comes last, in my understanding, you’re more concerned about making your business more resilient for the, for the future. And for the market, rather than focusing on Oh, yeah, we can get this great new AR System. That’s not the point, the AR System is not the point, making the business actually work better as the point and the AR comes at the end, is my understanding of digital transformation.

George Trujillo  15:35

Yeah, and, you know, coming back to, you know, a values-based approach, I also heard from another executive, they said that your people will always want to know how much you care. Before they want to know how much, you know,

Richard Lowe  15:51

that makes sense. I found

George Trujillo  15:52

that has been really effective. And people seem that you’re all in, you’re buying into this approach. And, you know, it’s sometimes you know, it’s the intangible things that make the big difference. And that’s why sometimes, I really tried to reemphasize a value-based approach, because it makes sure I stay anchored, anchored on key things that determine success.

Richard Lowe  16:15

Yeah, in fact, in copywriting, which is a form of writing, it’s common to know that emotions come first. Facts come way down from emotions. So, it’s emotions, feelings, and things like that. You sell things based on emotion, you don’t sell them based on fact, people most, and this works the same way. And digital transformation, they’re going to be very emotional about change, a lot of people don’t like to change, they’re afraid, whatever. So, you have to start from there. And I’ve seen several companies that bring in these big outside firms to the digital transformation, which makes the transformation even harder, because the people are really threatened by that. Because they’re gonna lose their jobs and their minds.

George Trujillo  16:56

Yeah, yeah, that’s a great point. Because one of the challenges I see with that you can bring in outside firms that have a tremendous amount of expertise and experience. But is it educational? Is it tactical? Or is it cultural, and sometimes that that culture leadership has to come from within, versus an outside organization, helping you define your culture, but that’s just maybe some of my personal experiences that I’ve seen in large initiatives?

Richard Lowe  17:23

Yeah, yeah, you might need an outside firms help to help you with the cultural transformation. But it really needs to come from inside. Because the people are the culture. And if they’re not part of transforming their culture, you’re not actually transforming your culture, you’re forcing something. And that’s not going to work that’s going to just breed hostility and make it not work well. Agreed. And something else I’ve noticed is in here, I’ve read about like G’s attempt to dissolve deductive form. If you can’t bite off everything at once, you have to focus on the important stuff first.

George Trujillo  18:01

It’s amazing that the more you study, digital transformation, the more you try to be digital savvy, you go look for where’s their inspired leadership? Where has there just been incredible success? And what are the patterns and the frameworks and the tools that they use. And whenever I see really, really successful leaders that lead massive digital transformations, they always talk about, as you pointed, of building that education and building that culture, in waves and in phases. You can’t do it all at once. And not only do you do it in phases, is how are you constantly feeding and nurturing that culture that you’re trying to build. I mean, Rachel, I can’t think of an exception of a really successful digital transformation that didn’t use that approach.

Richard Lowe  18:51

I agree. And I agree in the writing I’ve done. And then what I’ve seen, your transformation won’t work. If you’re not changing the culture, it simply doesn’t work. Unless it’s very small scale, or unless you’re just forcing it down people’s throats. And they’re just accepting it because they’ve always accepted it. And even then, that’s, you’re not going to get what you want, you might get something. But you’re not going to get a lot of big success. I know we were successful at Trader Joe’s because we focused on very small pieces at once. We didn’t run through the whole place at the same time. So, we focus on the supply chain or the warehousing or the merchandising one at a time. And when we expanded that it became staff became overwhelmed really fast. And they couldn’t take it but when we focused on just the supply chain, or part of the supply chain, it became much easier to transform.

George Trujillo  19:52

And going back and measuring are people able to work at the speed that you’re trying to get them to and if you’re not, how are you filling those gaps? Are you helping them get there. And so it’s just a constant process of nurturing and growing and developing and re skilling. And, you know, that’s another consistent pattern that I’ve seen, you know, when, when organizations take on a massive digital transformation, another successful pattern is finding that balance of bringing in new talent, but also doing a tremendous amount of rescaling of your existing resources, and getting their buy in. And sometimes your challenges can be you’ve got the new and the old, that are kind of at conflict with each other. And so, finding projects that integrate them together, and get them rowing together in the same boat, also start creating impacts. And that’s part of, you know, leadership, looking for all those things. And where sometimes it’s not a textbook approach. It’s how do we grow and develop and nurture the dynamics of that change that we’re trying to get to occur within our culture, and within the values that drive that culture?

Richard Lowe  21:03

Well, one thing that’s very important for for leaders who are transforming their business, is you have to remember, you have that organizational knowledge that if people didn’t leave, you’ve lost. So, you’ve got somebody who knows your systems inside and out, like I used to. And been there 20 years like I was, I mean, I knew everything. I knew how it worked, I knew the history, I knew everything, and losing somebody like that, or having them not engaged, can can make it very difficult to move forward, yet, and yet, integrating them into the process. And making them part of the team, even though they’re the old school, so to speak, can be very, very useful, especially during a transformation and afterwards rescale them to work with the new system.

George Trujillo  21:52

And just think that the positive impact you have on people within your organization for a long time that understand the business that understand the context that they have the common sense of the business, that external technology experts will not have, when they see that the organization’s making an investment in them and saying, Hey, you’re an important part of that journey. How does that uplift everybody in the organization and create positive momentum?

Richard Lowe  22:19

Yes, yes. These are all interesting points about digital transformation that if you’ve never done it before, you’ve never been exposed to it. They’re not obvious that you start with people you most IT people think, oh, we’re gonna start with technology, obviously, because we’d love technology, is it people we love that new, super big data drives that doll intelligent and uses AI to put data all over the place. But that’s not where you start. That’s where you, that’s part of the process. But maybe you don’t need it, maybe you need something else. Maybe pencil and paperwork best. I mean, for crying out loud, you don’t know until you get in there. Or maybe you’re focusing on the wrong thing. Because you do want to focus on the things that give you the bigger bang and give you the better processes and prove things better, rather than on the small stuff. Baby, trying to optimize people’s spreadsheets isn’t where you want to start, because maybe that works fine. And optimizing those isn’t going to help your business very much. So maybe you want to focus on more of their workflows, or sometimes just bring picking up examples. But it seems you seem like well, we want to get rid of all those Excel spreadsheets, because they’re all different. They’re all bla bla bla bla bla. But is it really causing a problem that you need to solve? And perhaps the answer is no. Maybe it’s yes. But look at it from a not a technical point of view. Of course, we technicians want to get rid of all those Excel spreadsheets, you know, because they’re, they’re ugly, and they’re user maintained, and I gotta go in and support the darn thing. But is it really important? Does it matter for the business? Whether you’re using an Excel spreadsheet or a database, that’s all fancy? And is what is it called, you know, the big Hoopa, you know, drives and stuff? Yes, the who dumped or whatever it was called. Or, you know, brand new system, that’s something that we had to look at very closely. And we didn’t have a lot of resources. So, we didn’t focus on those little things. We focused on more on the big things like the supply chain, which was a huge thing, or making the warehouses more efficient. I mean, you’ve got 45 warehouseman pulling product, out of the warehouse all day long. You improve their time by 10 minutes each through the day, you gain, you know, 1000s and 1000s of hours through the year, you. So that’s much better than trying to improve some accounting person with their spreadsheet. Not that they’re not important, but their spreadsheet may be working fine. So, when you think of all that,

George Trujillo  24:51

I was smiling as you were speaking, because I was thinking of that old saying that, you know, Insanity is doing the same thing. Over and over and over again and expecting a different result. And it’s, it’s, it’s really interesting, you know, I was part of the the wave when Big Data and Hadoop first came out. And everybody rushed to the technology. And we’ll figure it all out later. And then we had this big wave of, of web and mobile applications, let’s get these applications up and running. And we’ll figure it out later. And now we’re in the world of generative AI. And once again, everybody’s rushing to the shiny new toy. And technology decisions are leading the way. And it’s leading to very siloed approaches, and the business or bystanders. So, it’s just, it’s just amazing that, you know, when I’ve been tracking for the last three years, digital transformations, the rate of success, I was seeing, you know, companies like being shown in like 2019, that digital transformations were having, like single digits of success rates. And then when you look at, you know, 2023, you see that, you know, it can be up to single digits to the mid 20s, a percentage of success rates, and everybody seems to be ignoring the difficulties organizations have not addressed, like, if only 22% are succeeding, why are we going to be different? How are we doing it differently? How are we going to define the direction that we’re going in and be successful? What are those gaps that we have to fill in, and I just, you know, part of me wanting to go out and be an independent strategist, again, was I just see that organizations are still struggling with that. And, you know, for our companies, our, our local economies for our country, we have to become more successful, and get better at solving these problems. And, and, you know, some people I was on the phone today, and I was talking to someone that says, well, you know, generative AI is still just a buzzword, and we’ll see what it looks like in two years. And, and I can understand perspective, but I see a number of companies that are getting really tangible, impactful results from general AI. And I believe it’s real, I believe it’s, it’s here to stay, it’s going to have impact. And we’ve got as a as an organization, as an industry. As companies, we’ve got to help companies be more successful.

Richard Lowe  27:23

Well, I mean, I know even me as a writer and a solopreneur. In generative AI chat GPT. And its offshoots has been a godsend and improving my productivity. Now I don’t use it to write because chat GPT lies too much. And it makes really crappy writing, but I use it to help me research or like, take an interview. And I tell it, okay, this interview was all over the place, can you break it down into an outline, it makes sense. For me, that works really well. Except for a lie. Sometimes, you have to be careful. So, it literally adds added things. When I did it to the when I do it to the transcript. That didn’t happen in the interview. It’s like, where did you get that from? I asked it that. I say that. Where’d you get that from? And it said, oh, sorry. And it did it again. Without that it’s like, you mean, you needed me to tell you were lying?

George Trujillo  28:13

Yeah, well, you know, I think one of the things that’s really changed that I’m not sure that, you know, people that aren’t deeply involved that are seen as you know that you are correct, that occurs with large language models. But as organizations are building vector databases, and they’re building their organizations context, and intelligence in these vector databases to tune the data that’s in these large language models, the information starts becoming more accurate. Of course, I wrote a story from a CIO magazine article I wrote a couple months ago. And I highlighted that let’s say I wanted to go to a retailer because I wanted to build a deck for my backyard. And I might search on what type of wood, what type of bolts and screws and nuts I need to get what type of cement, and I’m doing all these searches to figure it out? Well, if that company that provides those type of resources, if they can use a vector database, and build context around their products, and how companies use their products, what changes is you now go to their application and their agents and how they’ve tuned all that information. And you say, you know what, I want to build a deck. And here’s my address. And here’s the size of it. Can you give me a low-cost medium, and a bells and whistles solution? And what do I need to know about building that deck. So now with generative AI, it can tell you if you’re building a deck of this size, here’s the materials that you need. Here’s how long it takes for the finish to dry. Here are local contractors that you may want to use to pour the cement. Here’s the type of permits that you have to get to your location. So, all of a sudden, it’s completely redefined the customer experience and I think when people, I’m glad you made that point, because sometimes when listeners go to chat GPT, they’re going, I’m getting all these inaccuracies, I’m getting all these hallucinations. They’re not seeing how organizations are building out their general AI capabilities today, and that we’re gonna see by the end of the year, and I am really looking forward to this, this upcoming holiday season, to really see what companies are leading in transforming that that customer experience, because I think it’s going to really surprise people in terms of the positivity and the capabilities of generative AI that I’m not sure everybody’s seeing, because it’s right now a lot of it is happening under the scenes and people are growing and building out those capabilities.

Richard Lowe  30:47

Exactly, yes. For the writing. For example, one of the things that I’ve found it’s really useful for, as I say, GPT, here’s this article that I wrote, what did I forget? And it says, well, you should also read about this, and this and this and this. And then it said, who’s your audience be more specific to say, okay, my audience is blah, blah, blah, great for that audience. You also need to talk about this, and this and this. Wow. I mean, that just that just made me make a better article is not writing it for me. But it’s doing some of the helping me with some of the thought processes. I could see. See the opportunities for AI, like you said, in just the shopping experience being phenomenal. I mean, going in and say buying a new car and saying, okay, I’ve got this disability, I’ve got these needs. I have kids, and they’re a pain in the button, I want to keep them occupied and such, put together a car for me, and you order a custom car with just the right things that you need for that car. We’ve got, you know, older parents that I need to bring to and from medical facilities occasionally how to, you know, say so we need a lift or whatever. This can all be a game changer, because you don’t have to think about it anymore. You can, you can just give it real life instructions. Like I would talk to you. This is what I need. Tell me what it tells me what to do that does it. Thank you very much. I’m gonna go do that. Or, okay, you got it wrong. He can you I don’t need a lift on there. I can’t afford it. So can you give me the other options? Well, how about this and this and this? It’s in for medical, Oh, my Lord, the opportunities in the medical world. I understand. It’s already producing sometimes better diagnosis than doctors. And that’s scary. Because makes me wonder about doctors. But a doctor could certainly use that as an assistant, like, like a lawyer uses a paralegal. You heard about the lawyer who use chat GPT Did you hear that story? The lawyer actually put together a case and news Jackie chat GPT for research turned out chap GPT lied, and gave cases that don’t exist. When he asked the lawyer actually didn’t check it or his paralegal didn’t. And they went before the judge and the judge, my understanding is the judge had him sanctioned and disbarred. Because you don’t do that. You got to check those references. That’s what I heard. I’m not positive about the disbarred part, but I know he was sanctioned. So there are real world applications to AI.

George Trujillo  33:24

And I think that’s, I think that’s a really key differentiating point to make, because I think when when most people go to chat, GPT, they see a lot of that, but they’re not, as I said, seeing underneath the covers, are how companies are using vector databases and building intelligence, and building memory and building context into how they use their information. That’s kind of redefining the capabilities of what generative AI can do. And, you know, it’s interesting, I, you know, I’m really trying to just constantly immerse myself in trying to be digital savvy. And, you know, when I look at, you know, what’s going on in generative AI, whenever I go to look at healthcare, and what’s happening, it’s just inspiring to just think of the capabilities that is going to bring to an end, we’re talking about the really neat things, but we’re not talking about the the operational efficiencies that it can bring to hospitals, and not only with patients with with employees. And so I really think that’s why, you know, I’m doing what I’m doing in terms of, it’s so important that we help organizations get this right, because the positive impacts are, are almost unimaginable.

Richard Lowe  34:40

I mean, we just just talked a little bit about that CPT? Well, the general Chechi t got his database from scanning in the web and Reddit, and a few other places. So of course, it’s biased. You know, but these companies, as you pointed out, are using different ways to get their data their database built so they can eliminate the biases or at least reduce them. For hospitals and for other places, I see a huge possibility of giving, giving your AI your workflows and having an optimizing, because one thing about hospitals is their workflows are terrible. Just how this person gets moved from here to here to here to here, oh, my lord, talk about inefficiency, and just efficient making that more efficient with AI. Wow, you can really improve the productivity of the people and your profits. And

George Trujillo  35:32

yeah, and it can be simple things of if we have two patients that you went for the same thing, one had to come back to the hospital three days later, the other one never came back. And then you look at, as you said, the workflow of the pattern of how they went through that hospital, and what labs etc, they use, and you realize, it was completely different patterns that they went through, that generated completely different results. And, and those workflows could just be really impactful, just simple things like that.

Richard Lowe  36:01

Yeah, I took us cert class survival class for seven weeks, and one of the things we learned is how to triage people, well, AI can do that easily. That’s, that’s something that’s a I could do without even thinking about it. And imagine in a mass casualty situation, you have an AI program that we all just people in country awesome, really fast and really effectively without the emotion built in. So this person’s needs help more than this person, this person can wait, this person is beyond help, except that you’re all the things you do in triage. That would be a godsend to hospital, just that, especially in a mass casualty situation.

George Trujillo  36:44

Absolutely. And you know, one of the things that I think is really important as as, as an organization and industry, as we move in this direction is, is to have transparency and have honesty and just say, here’s where we’re at today. Here’s where we want to go and create realistic expectations. Because I’m fine if you’re if you don’t have all the bells and whistles now, just let me know what you do have and what I can trust. So building that trust is is critical to any organization’s success of what they want to do with generative AI. And that’s where I think another thing about generative AI is a lot of it’s real time, correct? Well, one of the biggest challenges is, is when you make real time decisions, you can’t take them back. If you’re deciding whether to close a plant, avow that in a manufacturing plant or not, or you’re trying to decide whether to call an ambulance for somebody or not, or you’re trying to say, hey, there’s warning with this type of situation, you can’t take those things back. So you need to be accurate with them. And you have to build that trust. And I think that’s where I worry a little bit because if people don’t have the trust, as you make it better, it’s going to take a tremendous amount of effort to get that trust back.

Richard Lowe  38:02

The first time that trust is broken, like, How many times have they tested self driving cars, and I think one or two have had accidents, trust is broken. Getting that trust back, I mean, 90% of the people aren’t going to touch a self driving car. Now, even though out of a million trips, who of them had accidents, that’s a pretty low failure rate, when you in the grand scheme of things, get it had accidents, the trust is broken. So you’ve got a problem, it’s more of a perception problem than a real problem. That’s going to happen a lot.

George Trujillo  38:38

And, you know, one of the things that that I’ve really become a key advocate for is as Chief Digital Officers. And part of the reason is, is they have to come in and have a horizontal view, they have to come in and understand the business perspective. And here’s where I think we can start eliminating a lot of the mistakes of the past of where we lead with technology first. And and that type of horizontal view. And looking at how we’re evolving our organization can just eliminate so many obstacles that impact an organization moving forward and, and it doesn’t have to be the Chief Digital Officer. But there has to be somebody that has a horizontal view. And they’re not leading with technology first.

Richard Lowe  39:31

Exactly, exactly. I think a Chief Digital Officer, maybe even a chief AI officer, are two things that you need in an organization, in addition to the chief security officer and so forth. You need people who understand their parts of the technology and processes and whatever else. I don’t know if they have to necessarily report to the board. That’s above my paygrade I think but they they should certainly have responsibility horizontally over the organization rather than vertically they coordinated in the whole organization as opposed to in in each individual vertical.

George Trujillo  40:06

Yeah. And I think, you know, when you look at, you know, the different C suite leaders, the chief digital officer has to be in the center of that. And if the Chief Digital Officer is off on one end, they need to have that executive support and sponsorship, to make sure that they get back in the middle.

Richard Lowe  40:26

Well, actually, none of these IT groups it, CEO, CTO, CFO, CIO, whatever, will work without support of the CEO and the board, they simply won’t work. Because if they’re not built into the goals and objectives of the organization, the strategy, it’s, anybody can say, Hey, you want me to do this AI thing, but I don’t see it and my goals for the year. I don’t have to do it. And they’re perfectly legitimate saying that, because it’s not in their goals. If my goal doesn’t include AI, why are you asking me to do it? Yeah, I’m not getting a raise based on that. I mean, let’s make it personal, you know?

George Trujillo  41:02

Yeah, you know, an inspiring story was one chief digital officer, that she was saying that how it was absolutely critical on day one, that you get alignment and sponsorship with the other C suite leaders. And she gave examples of how human resources put together training to help the organization learn the new culture, and the values and, and why they were doing things and, and what the CIO was doing, and the CSO, and the CFO, and how are they they were all supporting that you’re going, you know, just by the phone, I can see why that was really successful. And it worked.

Richard Lowe  41:39

Of course, of course. Well, we’ve been talking for about 45 minutes. And I think we’re coming up to the end is there. Sorry to be so abrupt, but is there any, anything you’d like to say as we wander off into the distance?

George Trujillo  41:55

Just on a final note is when you look at digital transformations, look at it from a business transformation? And how is technology going to enable that business transformation? And if you could just take that one piece of advice, it will help you stay on the yellow brick road.

Richard Lowe  42:16

Very good. Thank you very much. Did you say you’ve written a book?

George Trujillo  42:21

I’ve written a couple books. One was on how to virtualize databases and move into the cloud. And so I’m looking at writing a third book on digital transformation. But I always collect a dream team of different writers to write different pieces. So there’s a wide perspective of it. But as I get there, I’ll keep in the loop, Richard?

Richard Lowe  42:46

Well, I understand I just like to bring in the author’s point of view, too. So you’ve written two books, and they’re on Amazon.

42:54

They are both on Amazon. Yes. All right.

Richard Lowe  42:58

I’ll see if I can find the links to them. Put them in the in the interview. Very good. So this has been conversations with influencers. I’m the writing King, and as I said, I do ghost writing, book coaching and LinkedIn branding. So I hope you come back this will be there’s I’m doing two influencers every week. There’ll be on YouTube, on my website, and on SoundCloud and other places as well. So I’m back like and subscribe. Enjoy this and I’ll talk to you next time.

George Trujillo  43:29

Thank you very much, Richard.

Richard Lowe
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