Most board directors’ current thinking about artificial intelligence can be placed into two buckets: opportunities and risks. “We…describe it as both the offense and the defense,” says Ryan McManus, a faculty member of the National Association of Corporate Directors’ AI governance workshop

Under opportunities, you can think about the performance improvements created by new generative AI tools, as well as the new products and services the technology allows companies to offer customers. The risks involve concerns related to data privacy, copyright, and bias, to name a few.

To understand how boards are thinking about those opportunities and risks in relation to talent, we spoke with:

  • McManus, board member at Nortech Systems, Inc. 
  • Edith Cooper, board member at Amazon and PepsiCo; co-founder of Medley; and former partner, EVP, and head of human capital management at Goldman Sachs.
  • Jamie Smith, director at EY’s Center for Board Matters.
  • Erin Essenmacher, chief strategy and member experience officer at executive education company Athena Alliance.

We wanted to know what types of questions HR leaders should be expecting from their boards. Below are the questions they recommended having answers ready for—we’ve also compiled them into a worksheet here that you can use as you prepare for board meetings.  

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