This years' Ads24 Food For Thought event, which took place on Tuesday, 21 May at Langhams Executive Conferencing venue in Beverley, Johannesburg, focused on the future of business from an AI and technology perspective and how our roles as humans are changing.
“Last year, we were in the run-up to the 2019 presidential elections, so our speakers concentrated more on political and economic developments and offered their predictions for the future,” said Marise van der Lith, brand manager at Ads24.
“This year, we focused on a different aspect of the future by looking at the incredible pace of AI and technology and how it’s reshaping our existence. We explored how this shift is having a positive and negative impact on business and the planet and the relevance and importance of humanity in this increasingly automated economy.”
"I'm so pleased we're wearing aprons as this is so slurpy!" This might not be typical business dialogue, but these and similar exclamations were par for the course at the Cape Town version of Ads24's Food For Thought event...
The speaker lineup included motivational speaker and author of the best-selling business book, Legacide, Richard Mulholland, Brad Shorkend of Still Human and computer scientist Rapelang Rabana, each of whom shared their views on what you need to do to stay ahead of the game in a world where the word 'phigital' (physical and digital) is the new thing.
Here, Van der Lith tells us more about the thinking that went into this year’s event…
How did you come up with this year’s theme?
Food for Thought is in now in its third year. Essentially, the themes and experience of the events are a continual evolution of the preceding year. We take a look at the key themes shaping the media industry, the country and business globally.
Why is this so topical at the moment?
The pace of technological advancement is astounding and is having a significant impact on how we do business and who does what in business. There are so many areas in which the media industry is changing, from the way in which people are consuming news to social media, fake news, hyper-personalisation and programmatic buying, if we don’t keep pace and remain agile to these changes, we face professional extinction.
In summary, what ‘food for thought’ do you hope delegates took away?
The point behind Food for Thought is to get people thinking and debating so that the decision makers in positions of leadership can come up with new concepts and solutions to the challenges they face. In summary, our hope for Food for Thought is that there are as many original nuggets or takeouts as there are delegates.
What was your personal highlight?
As a company, the real highlight for Ads24 has been people’s reactions to the event. It has created a talking point and challenged conventional thinking in terms of how leaders in the industry look at business and create strategies going forward.
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