Will Your Future as a Leader Be Determined by ChatGPT?

Gloria Feldt
5 min readMay 9


Issue 228 — May 8, 2023

We got a cool tutorial in ChatGPT and Open AI from Marisa Hambleton, a participant in Take The Lead’s Intentioning Leadership Mastermind Series last week. I love learning about new technologies that are being employed to work better, faster, and more creatively.

The big question is, will the new applications of AI and in particular, ChatGPT, enable us to be faster, more creative problem solvers? And more specifically, how will it affect each of us individually and women’s advancement into and up through leadership roles?

To back up for a minute, let’s acknowledge that artificial intelligence (AI) has already been a transformative force in various fields, influencing numerous aspects of our lives. I mean, who doesn’t have a smartphone with AI search, an Alexa, Google Nest, Apple HomePod, various security systems, or other AI-powered home products? They provide increased convenience and efficiency, despite our fears and jokes about how they are listening to our most intimate conversations.

Much chatter is focusing on ChatGPT and its ilk. ChatGPT is a language model developed by OpenAI. It’s a powerful AI tool that has sparked discussions on its potential impact on many professions and human relationships.

The current writers’ strike, for example, is in part motivated by fears of what AI technology might do to eliminate jobs that writers in the entertainment industry have traditionally held. Worry about becoming redundant is always a concern when a new technology enters the scene.

Photo: NPR.

Will ChatGPT be a hindrance or a catalyst for the progress of women in leadership positions?

Throughout history, technological advancements have initially been met with skepticism and fear. The introduction of the telephone, for example, initially raised concerns about privacy, and the loss of face-to-face communication.

Similarly, early reactions to the internet included fear of job losses and the erosion of interpersonal relationships. Over time, however, these technologies have become integral to our daily lives and have ultimately spurred progress in various areas.

Like most technologies, the answer to the question of whether ChatGPT will be good for us or bad for us lies in what we do with it.

AI Bias: The Evidence for Negative Results

As AI has grown in importance, concerns about potential gender and racial biases have emerged. Research indicates that AI systems can inadvertently perpetuate existing biases present in the data they are trained on. This is a critical issue, as biased AI systems can reinforce gender and racial stereotypes, leading to unfair treatment and creating obstacles for women and minorities in leadership positions.

For instance, in a study conducted by Caliskan, Bryson, and Narayanan (2017), it was found that an AI language model exhibited gender bias, associating male names with careers and female names with family-related terms. A study of facial recognition technology revealed that darker-skinned and female faces were more likely to be misidentified than lighter-skinned and male faces. These examples demonstrate the potential for AI, including ChatGPT, to hinder women’s advancement, and that of various racial groups, if biases are not addressed.

AI for Women’s Leadership Advancement: The Evidence for Acceleration

Despite the potential for negative consequences, AI systems like ChatGPT can also serve as powerful tools to advance women’s leadership. By leveraging AI to analyze data, organizations can identify and address gender disparities in various aspects of their operations, such as hiring, promotions, and compensation.

AI can also assist in identifying and challenging unconscious biases that may exist within organizations, paving the way for more inclusive and equitable work environments. For example, the Pipeline Equity company founded by Take The Lead board member Katica Roy, specializes in the use of AI to reduce bias in internal promotions.

AI-powered mentorship programs can provide personalized guidance to women seeking to advance their careers. This can help bridge the gender gap in leadership by connecting women with experienced mentors who can offer tailored advice, support, and encouragement. It’s interesting to consider how Take The Lead can use this aspect of the technology to best leverage the community building and mentoring aspects of our training and leadership development programs.

The logo for ChatGPT, a new AI system with implications for women’s leadership.

Human Creativity and Technology Have Always Been a Partnership: Consider the Invention of Fire.

A colleague once said to me about information that no matter what you do, it leaks. The same is true for technology. Once it’s in existence, it will leak and spread, like water. However, human intelligence and creativity can always shape and influence that spread.

AI systems like ChatGPT have the potential to both help and hinder women’s leadership advancement, depending on how they are designed and implemented. It is crucial to recognize and address potential biases in AI to ensure that these tools are used to promote gender and racial equality on the long journey to leadership parity.

Warren Buffett, commenting at the Berkshire Hathaway annual meeting, said he expects AI will “change everything in the world,” but he doesn’t think it will trump human intelligence. Perhaps that is hope as well as intention.

A more nuanced view is expressed by Angela Ahrendts, former CEO of Burberry in an interview with Moira Forbes.

Likening the impact of AI to the advent of the iPhone, Ahrendts believes that effective leadership is undergoing a radical shift, with AI supplanting many of the so-called hard skills typically prioritized within executive ranks. Because of that, she predicts creatives have a competitive advantage, because of attributes like passion, intuition, and empathy, things machines can’t replace — at least not yet.

“We are going to be leaning on the creatives to look ahead and to run things,” Ahrendts predicts. “We need to amplify human attributes in an artificial world.”

To amplify human attributes as Ahrendts suggests, and to harness the potential of AI and other technological advancements for good, we must consider exactly how human creativity and technology can work together and to ensure that AI systems, like ChatGPT, are designed, trained, and deployed in ways that promote equality and inclusivity.

Leaders have an obligation to identify and mitigate biases in AI, so we can develop tools that support women’s leadership advancement and foster a more diverse and equitable society. This partnership between human creativity and technology can lead to innovative solutions to complex problems, ultimately advancing progress for all.

Now excuse me while I order a Roomba to sweep the floors (because who has time?) and check my latest recommended LinkedIn connections. Thank you, ChatGPT for helping me write this week’s column in about half the time it usually takes me.

GLORIA FELDT is the Cofounder and President of Take The Lead, a motivational speaker and expert women’s leadership developer for companies that want to build gender balance, and a bestselling author of five books, most recently Intentioning: Sex, Power, Pandemics, and How Women Will Take The Lead for (Everyone’s) Good. Honored as Forbes 50 Over 50 2022, and Former President of Planned Parenthood Federation of America, she is a frequent media commentator. Learn more at www.gloriafeldt.com and www.taketheleadwomen.com. Tweet Gloria Feldt.



Gloria Feldt

Gloria Feldt is a New York Times bestselling author and co-founder and president of Take The Lead, a nonprofit women’s leadership organization.