3 key takeaways from Gong CEO Amit Bendov’s Ask Me Anything (AMA) on the rise of AI
If you’re a salesperson (or a writer, or a coder, or just about anyone else), you’ve probably been wondering: Is AI going to steal my job? Just how worried should I be?
The concern is understandable. Within the last six months, we’ve seen generative AI tools do the seemingly impossible: create photorealistic images, write credible human copy, and impersonate us in ways many of us didn’t see coming.
But in reality, a lot of the excitement around AI is just that—excitement, and not an indication that robots are going to steal our jobs. This was the subject of a recent Ask Me Anything (or AMA, based on the popular Reddit event) conducted by Amit Bendov, Gong’s CEO. Amit has deep experience with AI—including Gong’s own private, proprietary model—and recently fielded numerous questions from sales leaders and professionals about AI’s role in sales.
A key takeaway: Salespeople don’t have to freak out about losing their jobs to AI—yet. Here’s a summary of Amit’s thoughts on the rise of AI, and what salespeople can do to stay ahead of the curve.
3 insights on the role of AI in sales, today and tomorrow
1. AI isn’t replacing salespeople.
While AI is buzzing right now, it still isn’t at the the peak of the hype cycle right now. If you’re unfamiliar, the hype cycle is a concept introduced by Gartner, and it outlines the mindset surrounding new and potentially disruptive technologies. Briefly: People get overly excited about new possibilities, then realize that the tech isn’t there yet, and slowly but surely, reality sets in.
Applied to AI and sales, don’t mistake the hype surrounding AI for the idea that AI is coming for our jobs.
AI isn’t here to replace you. It’s here to support you. It will help you automate redundant, mundane tasks—logging call info in CRM systems, scheduling follow-ups, creating customer summaries—so that you can spend more time on the parts of your job where you excel: helping your customers solve problems.
2. AI should support you (in the background).
Truly disruptive technologies don’t require special skills to use. We didn’t have to learn much to use iPhones, and we don’t have to learn new driving tactics to drive Teslas.
In the same way, AEs and ICs shouldn’t have to stay ahead of the AI curve to benefit from it. And the vast majority of companies won’t start integrating it in a serious way until they can do so without diverting a high volume of organizational resources.
The most important skill for sellers is, and will remain, problem-solving. AI should assist you in leveraging this skill, by automating menial tasks, surfacing and prioritizing most critical actions for the day, and giving you insights that help you make informed decisions. Playing the role an assistant would play—augmenting, but not overtaking your role.
3. Gong’s proprietary AI will make you more productive and efficient.
Gong has built a proprietary AI model – trained on billions of customer interactions – that understands every customer touchpoint and can proactively prioritize to-dos based on the context of a deal, can identify deal risks, and surface recommendations to keep deals moving ahead.
We’ve also built our own generative AI models that deeply understand customer interactions and autonomously generate powerfully accurate content. For example, the ability to summarize a 60-minute sales conversation into a short list of bullet points with the most important takeaways and action items. Imagine the time savings on a daily, weekly and monthly basis!
Right now, the single most important thing for salespeople to do is to understand and develop the most human aspects of selling: listening, adapting, and solving problems. AI will give us more time to do just that, serve as a guide to navigate deal obstacles, and identify new opportunities. The future is now!