People are at the heart of Spring’s business – our people, our understanding of people to help clients achieve their objectives, our impact on and awareness of people around us. We’re all moving into an increasingly automated world and this has opportunities and risks attached.
And so today, we launch our People Manifesto to underline our commitment to the role we can play in valuing people, and to give us all clear guidelines for our behaviour and approach.
“Everything we love about civilization is a product of intelligence, so amplifying our human intelligence with artificial intelligence has the potential of helping civilization flourish like never before – as long as we manage to keep the technology beneficial.“ Max Tegmark, President of the Future of Life Institute
In the next decade, people will have to define our value to each other, or risk an ever-more fractured society with a dangerously disenfranchised sub-class.
Harness technology wisely and we can create a new age of prosperity with quality of life, healthy communities, access to culture, sufficient good food for everyone and deepened empathy. Miscalculate, and the human race is in trouble.
Robotics, Artificial Intelligence and other means of replacing people in repetitive, logical tasks must complement people’s lives, not reduce opportunity. Equality has flourished thanks to white goods in the home; humanity must flourish thanks to the automation of equivalent work functions.
Elon Musk said, in July 2017, ““AI is the rare case where I think we need to be proactive in regulation instead of reactive. Because I think by the time we are reactive in AI regulation, it’ll be too late. AI is a fundamental risk to the existence of human civilisation.”
Only we can honour our value, only we can value each other; and the time to commit is now. To do this, we must face up to the risks, plan a new working world that has room for everyone, and commit to ethical programming of our technical assistants.
In addition, in our own sphere we must always remember that Spring’s people are its core, its purpose and its capability, our clients’ customers and constituents the focus of all our work. Our purpose is to grow businesses and regenerate communities: this is all about people and they are at the heart of all we do.
- Our language underscores our respect for humanity: we say ‘people’ rather than ‘users’, ‘targets’, ‘audience’, ‘stakeholders’ and other words that dehumanise.
- We value the people around us, respecting and understanding their individuality and diversity. We treat people as we wish to be treated, including understanding that all of us have ‘off’ moments, and are tolerant.
- In our dealings with people, we behave in personable rather than corporate ways. We demonstrate our respect and affection through social politenesses like hand-written notes, and share news with and about our clients and community.
- We consciously demonstrate people’s unique skills in our work and know how to articulate their value, too: finding hidden truths, applying creativity, thinking sideways, using well-informed instinct, having natural empathy.
- As Codes of Conduct are established, as AI becomes more widespread, we will sign up and ensure we use it wisely to enhance our people’s capabilities.
- We will support projects and education programmes designed to equip people with new skills that allow them to flourish as individuals in an increasingly technically-adept world.