“The secret to happiness is low expectations.”
Recently I’ve been one of those people telling everyone who’s willing to listen how mind-blowingly, game-changingly awesome ChatGPT is. And it is!
But in this post I want to present a more balanced view of ChatGPT (and textual generative AI tools in general), and help set realistic expectations about the capabilities of these tools at this moment in time.
A framework I found useful is to think about ChatGPT as an intern on the Blue Seedling team. A special intern. An intern who – in the course of a single conversation – can be jaw-droppingly smart, and incredibly dumb. An intern who’s a mix of pure brilliance and an occasional ‘I-partied-too-hard-last-night’ episode.
Let’s dive into the good and bad of our ChatGPT intern.
The pros of our intern, ChatGPT
1. She’s an optimist.
ChatGPT, like an intern brimming with fresh energy, is relentlessly positive. Ask her anything, and her response is likely wrapped in a bubble of enthusiasm: “Sure!”, “Absolutely!”, “Certainly!”. It’s so fun to have a co-worker who always says Yes.
2. She’s fast. 🏎
Her responses – to even the toughest questions – are almost instant.
3. She’s smart.
ChatGPT’s knowledge reservoir is vast and diverse. Whether it’s history, science, or 16th-century French poetry, she’s read the relevant wiki entries.
4. She’s a strong writer.
Tone of voice aside (more on that below), her writing mechanics are solid, her vocabulary is impressive, and her grammar impeccable.
5. She never tires.
She’s available 24×7, no days off or coffee breaks. 10 more title variations for this blog post? No problem. 15 more, shorter, and with emojis? Certainly!
But wait, there’s more! (The not-so-pros of our ChatGPT intern)
1. She’s occasionally hungover.
Every once in a while, our intern shows up to work as if it’s Monday morning and she’s still hungover from the weekend’s adventures. She makes stuff up, and insists they’re right. You ask her to summarize your blog post draft, and she starts talking about Elon Musk.
2. She writes like a used car salesperson.
At times, it seems like ChatGPT gulped down an EXCITEMENT potion 🧪. Caps LOCK ON, emojis galore 😎💩🐩🤸♂️🛒, and buzzword party, with plenty of exclamation marks thrown in. As with any intern, when this happens, you need to invest quite a bit of time and mental energy in coaching her to learn and do better – or re-do her work yourself.
3. She can’t complete a project from scratch (yet?).
Much like an intern, ChatGPT needs to be told what to do, and then needs multiple rounds of iteration, feedback, and edits to get to a complete product.
The bottom line
On balance, I love my new intern. It’s fun to have a team member who is always positive, so smart, and is excited to collaborate 24×7. Even her mistakes and occasionally ridiculous tone of voice put a smile on my face.
Besides, where else can you get such a versatile intern for a monthly salary of $20? 😉
Kidding aside, embrace your ChatGPT intern with open arms but remember – manage your expectations, relish the good, and chuckle at the absurdities.
The big question is whether our intern will graduate and join us full-time as a senior marketing manager who’s able to plan and execute campaigns end-to-end with no guidance. And later on, get promoted to a Director or VP Marketing, owning marketing strategy, budget, and planning. I’m still not sure how I feel about either outcome. 🔮