Beyond the AI anxiety: The impact of human intuition

Explore the ways we're adapting to work with AI, not against it

Produced by: Christopher Pereira

In 1995, Clifford Stoll wrote an article in the magazine Newsweek that said, “The truth is no online database will replace your daily newspaper, no CD-ROM can take the place of a competent teacher and no computer network will change the way government works”. The very internet he thought short-lived and unlikely to succeed has let the legacy of his statement live on long enough to be mocked for the years that followed.

Every once in a while, there’s a technological breakthrough that disrupts what we have come to think of as standard working practice. And in the 2020’s, the AI revolution is reshaping how we work in much the same way as the internet did in the 1990’s. The fear as always is, what value does a human being have in the face of a computer program that can do things faster, cheaper and potentially better?


A blueprint is only as good as the architect

The term AI is a bit of a misnomer because the things we refer to as such isn’t really ‘artificial intelligence’. Instead, we have a complex prediction machine which can access a vast network of data and churn out a curated response. All of this without fully understanding the underlying motivation or grasping the bigger picture.

Without increasingly specific parameters, you have what us nerds call ‘spurious regression’. This is when an algorithm correlates two unrelated variables because it simply doesn’t understand how things work. My favourite example is perhaps a study that analysed the significant correlation between stork populations and human birth rates across Europe.1 We, as human beings, know that the story of storks carrying babies is nothing more than fiction. But this study, along with the volume of baby carrying stork stories on the internet, is enough for an AI algorithm to decide this is a good model of birth rate prediction.


The intuitive edge

At Mednet, we know that innovation and adaptation are crucial in all areas of our work, including project management. Rather than resisting AI, embracing its capabilities can revolutionise project workflows, efficiency, and outcomes.

When it comes to project management, there’s often a varying amount of interpretative licence, and this can inform the way we integrate new ways of working.

 AI can help us streamline repetitive tasks, allowing teams to focus on strategic decision-making and creativity. Its predictive analytics enhance project planning, risk assessment, and resource allocation, leading to more informed decisions and optimised processes.

But when it comes to the creative side of the role, it’s time for that human intuition to step up. Often, the first step is to be able to conceptualise the client’s needs, based on all the uncertain information provided. And this is where the human touch really shines. We decide what we feel is important to incorporate, consider all the pieces yet to come and figure out the essence of what we’re trying to create. When we pull it all together, we create a narrative that gives the client what they never knew they needed. Going beyond the ask and into the unmet need, can only come from a place of being human.

 My words, perhaps like Clifford Stoll’s, may come to be remembered as gloriously short-sighted, but the truth is that there was one thing he was absolutely right about, “What’s missing from this electronic wonderland? Human contact”.

 Embracing AI fosters a culture of continuous innovation, but it’s important that we find a balance in combining that with the human factor.



1.     Matthews, R. (2000). Storks deliver babies (p = 0.008). Teaching Statistics, 22(2), 36–38.

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