November 6th, 2023

Leveraging AI & the Future of Teams in West Michigan

The Technology Council of West Michigan gathered to explore the impact and tremendous potential that AI will have on all our industries. Below are some insights we gained from our discussion.

Technology Technology Council of West Michigan West Michigan Greater Grand Rapids Tech

Written by Jen Wangler, VP of Technology

The Technology Council of West Michigan gathered to explore the impact and tremendous potential that AI will have on all our industries. Below are some insights we gained from our discussion.

The Michigan Opportunity

AI is unlocking the potential of general-purpose robotics, and it's happening sooner than we realize! With its advanced programming capabilities, AI is revolutionizing industries such as manufacturing and healthcare. Michigan, with its rich manufacturing base, strong talent pool in mechanical engineering, and software developers, is in a prime position to seize on this tremendous opportunity.

“In the next ten years, Michigan has the opportunity to become a global leader in innovation. But that opportunity won’t be waiting for long. Others are already lining up to try to take it,” said Dan Chuparkoff, Principal Partner at Reinvention Labs. “The teams who reinvent the things they build, and the way they build things will be the teams who lead and succeed in the future.”

Reducing dependence on Centralized AI Systems

One of the game-changing aspects of AI is its ability to generate code, which addresses a common problem faced by software developers and enterprises. It helps to lower barriers to entry and reduces dependency on centralized AI systems. Imagine having your own personalized AI working for you, automating routine tasks, and providing tailored solutions. Broadening access to AI technology fosters innovation and reduces the risk of monopolization.

AI Data Decisions

The importance of data cannot be overlooked in this AI-driven world. AI can summarize large data sets in a conversational manner, aiding decision-making for enterprises. For small businesses, utilizing their own AI to automate tasks and personalize messaging is now a possibility.

AI as a Service

So, how can we start leveraging AI? AI as a service is a valuable option, allowing us to work with AI rather than relying on it completely. Starting with small, inexpensive experiments helps us gradually familiarize ourselves with the technology. It will become crucial to build AI literacy within organizations, as it will become a key factor in judging their competence.

The Role of Education

Education plays a pivotal role in the successful adoption of AI. The integration of AI-powered tutoring systems with human educators can customize educational experiences, catering to individual learning styles and needs. Both businesses and communities need to be educated on the possibilities and challenges it presents. Investing in AI literacy within organizations and collaborating with universities can yield fruitful results. Leveraging younger minds through advisory boards, speaker engagements, and internships can bring fresh perspectives and insights.

Join the Conversation

The Technology Council continues to be committed to fostering dialogue and collaboration around emerging trends. If you’re running a tech company in West Michigan, or looking for local partners, set up a one-on-one with me. For more information, email me at

Contact Jen Wangler

Jen wangler 1

Jennifer Wangler

Vice President, Technology | Director, Technology Council of West Michigan

Jennifer provides retention and expansion assistance to Right Place clients in Kent County and site location assistance to national and international IT and tech companies. She also serves as the Director for the Technology Council of West Michigan.

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