Orchestrating Progress: From Steam Engines to AI Conductors

Fear, uncertainty and doubt is a common default reaction, but I like to err on the side of excitement. Especially for AI and the future of work.


Farms to factories, horses to steam engines, small towns to booming cities—it was wild. And everyone was scared. They worried about machines taking over their jobs, changing their whole way of life.

It doesn’t have to be all doom and gloom

Even with all that anxiety back then, things didn’t turn out all doom and gloom.

Actually, the opposite. Sure, it was a bumpy ride, but on the whole — We did benefit from it. Better living standards, education became more common, healthcare availability improved, you name it. Quality of life just improved.

So, here we are, facing our own big change with AI. Yes, it’s nerve-wracking thinking about robots and algorithms doing things we do. But this isn’t about us vs. them. It’s not a competition. It’s about making things better, just like before. We’ve been here, done that. We figured it out once, we can do it again.

As a former developer/marketer turned product manager — Tech evolves fast and the end result is always better. Knowledge work will be radical different. Embrace the changes. Become a generalist in overlapping tech stacks, but train yourself to be a conductor. Learn how you can take a wide breadth of skills and combine them. Learn about prompt engineering & how you can orchestrate projects from start to finish.

Steam Engines — Chief Conductors of XYZ

We’ve all heard the jack of all trades quote, and most of us have heard the ending that is often left out, but I think it bears being repeated for it will be critical for the future of work.

“Jack of all trades, master of none, but oftentimes better than a master of one.”

Someone in the 17th Century, probably.

…No. Not that type of Conductor.

Conductor of Future

Much better.