Panel Discusses Profound Impact of AI on Professional Services

Business Council of Westchester

Standing, from left, Jason Scott, Partner, Gordon Rees Scully Mansukhani; BCW President & CEO Marsha Gordon; Gary Grandstaff, Commercial Banking Regional Manager, Tompkins Community Bank (sponsor); Elizabeth Bracken-Thompson, Partner, Thompson & Bender, and Dwayne Norris, Co-Founder & COO, Soulful Synergy. Seated, from left, Raymond Ebert, Founder, EGIS Partners; Paul Tyler, Chief Marketing Officer, Nassau Financial Group and Donvil Collins, Founder, VeeKast

The Business Council of Westchester (BCW) convened a panel of experts at the Tompkins Community Bank Power Breakfast on Thursday to delve into the profound impact of artificial intelligence (AI) on professional services.

The panel discussion, part of BCW’s AI Alliance 360° initiative, aimed to shed light on how AI is revolutionizing traditional practices, driving productivity, and enhancing client experiences across various industries. Panel moderator Marsha Gordon, President and CEO of the BCW, highlighted the transformative potential of AI in professional services.

“The conversion to artificial intelligence has ushered in a new era of innovation, efficiency, and integration across various industries from advertising and marketing to finance, legal services, and consulting,” said Gordon.

Paul Tyler, Chief Marketing Officer at Nassau Financial Group, provided insights into how AI is being used to predict personnel movements and simplify complex financial concepts using a pilot AI platform. “The pilot will be rolling out next month. It helps people talking to agents explain our some of our very complicated products in very easy ways,” said Tyler.

Jason C. Scott, a partner at Gordon Rees Scully Mansukhani, emphasized the importance of transparent AI-use policies within organizations. “Our internal policy is that if we’re using generative AI for you, we get your consent in writing. We make sure that the client has full information about that. We’ve only had a few large, national clients specifically ask and want to know exactly what we are doing, how are we using it,” said Scott.

Elizabeth Bracken Thompson, a partner at Thompson & Bender, highlighted the transformative impact of generative AI on advertising and marketing strategies. “It’s empowering all the people who work at our agency to understand our target markets better,” said Bracken-Thompson, who explained that time-consuming research is easier to obtain, analyze and apply to campaigns. “It’s creating a more efficient and budget-friendly experience.”

Raymond C. Ebert, founder of EGIS Partners, discussed the responsible implementation of AI within organizations. “Some of the new adopters who tend to adopt technology very well have been very organized in how they’ve done it. They’ve put a committee in place that basically oversees the use of AI within their organizations,” said Ebert.

Donvil Collins, founder of VeeKast — a video production company — said generative AI allows his staff to develop initial concepts and it gives them more time to improve scripts. “We can’t use it yet for producing the content because there’s definitely some issues with that, where there’s imperfections, some weird things that it would produce,” said Collins. “It just isn’t smart enough yet of course but it definitely creates some really beautiful images.”

Dwayne R. Norris, co-founder and COO of Soulful Synergy, a workforce development and employment training company, said his company uses AI platforms like Boomerang, Grammarly and Perplexity to improve efficiency. “When I’m reaching out to new partners, I’m having (AI) analyze websites and really understand where our service is aligned with one another. I’m having it analyze RFP’s and proposals so I can understand if it’s something that we should pursue or not pursue,” said Norris, noting that his proposal-preparation time has significantly fallen.

The BCW’s AI Alliance 360° initiative will continue with a series of events throughout the year, including discussions on AI in healthcare, academic innovation, cybersecurity, and marketing strategies. Thursday’s program was held at the Westchester Marriott in Tarrytown.

Nicholas BreniaPanel Discusses Profound Impact of AI on Professional Services