How to use AI to automate the dreaded office meeting

How to use AI to automate the dreaded office meeting

Greetings! welcome back Tech on: AyeA pop-up newsletter that teaches you about Artificial Intelligence, how it works and how to use it.

Last week, I showed you how to use creative AI tools to generate and edit stunning images. Now let’s move on to automating some of the time consuming, sometimes tedious parts of many office jobs.

Yes, I am talking about the meetings. I’ll talk about how to speed up tasks like preparing presentations, writing talking points, and taking minutes using generative AI tools like ChatGPT.

A common-sense caveat before we begin: Everything you do using an online service can potentially be seen by the company running it, whether it’s a big tech company or an AI startup. So if your meeting involves sensitive topics like trade secrets or personnel issues, it might not be the best time to experiment with these new tools.

Website gamma Will automatically generate a detailed and colorful slide deck that includes graphics, charts, and text. You may need to edit the text and add some of your own pictures. But think of this generator as a presentation template on steroids that automates the boring stuff, so you can work on the finer details.

First you sign up for a free account, click “Presentation” and type in a prompt. As is the case with text and image generators, the more detailed your prompts are, the better.

Here’s an example I used that describes a hypothetical presentation:

Staffing update for tech startups. Announcing new hires including a Director of Diversity, a Head of HR and 7 new Software Engineers. We now have a headcount of 120 people and are looking forward to expanding to 150 by 2024. In the future we will be hiring a head of business development and expanding the sales staff.

Gamma responds to prompts with an outline summarizing slide and template options in different color schemes.

Using my prompt, Gamma created a presentation with seven slides. Gamma included panels describing the roles of the new director of diversity and head of HR.

Here’s a snippet of two slides made by Gamma:

The last step is to edit the presentation. In my example, I’ll add the new employees’ names, their bios, and their headshots.

A word of warning: Generative AI systems are vulnerable to a phenomenon called “hallucinations”, where the model makes up plausible-sounding nonsense. Especially in a work setting, it’s extremely important to triple-check that no mistakes have been made.

I tested another site similar to Gamma that made beautiful slides, but also created fictitious employees and juxtaposed them with pictures of real people that it disappeared from the internet. not good!

To prepare for a hypothetical meeting to discuss staffing updates, I’d start by telling a chatbot like ChatGPT, Bard or Bing: “Act as if you’re my executive assistant who’s following me to the chief executive of a tech startup.” Speaking of, for a presentation…” and then paste in the earlier prompt that I used to create the slide deck.

(Remember, “Act like…” is one of the golden signals for using Generative AI.)

The chatbot will then generate a list of talking points to accompany each slide, along with some suggested comments. Again, you may need to do some editing.

Let’s say you want to briefly note down what was discussed in the meeting. Zoom and Google include tools that use AI to automatically transcribe speech from a meeting into a text file, as long as the meeting is recorded with everyone’s permission. You can then paste the transcript into the chatbot and ask it to summarize. (Remember, don’t do this with sensitive information.)

If you use Google Meet with a Business license, meeting transcripts are turned on by default and a link to the Google Doc is emailed to the host. (You can also follow google steps to activate the transcription feature.)

If you’re using Zoom, you’ll need a business, education, or enterprise license cloud recording enabled in account settings. When the Zoom meeting starts, enable cloud recording. After the meeting is over, the service will automatically generate a transcript.

From there, go to a chatbot and type in the prompt, “Act as if you are my executive assistant. You are compiling meeting minutes using this transcript. Then paste in the part of the transcript you want to summarize, and the chatbot will automatically format it into a one minute memo. (If the transcript is too long, you can tell the chatbot that you’re pasting it in several parts, and will say when you’re done.)

If the meeting isn’t recorded, but someone has taken notes, they can be pasted into the chatbot with the same prompts to format the document as in a meeting memo.

Next week, I’ll cover how to use AI for consumption — think vacation planning and shopping.

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