If you love figure skating, you would know that Patrick Chan is the most decorated male figure skater in Canadian history. He once explained why having too many (in his words, four) quadruple jumps in a long program would diminish the quality of figure skating. Setting up a quadruple jump requires so much set up. He said, “So what’s happening, and what you’re going to end up seeing is just people moseying down the ice and setting up for a quad. So four times, that’s already two-and-a-half minutes of the long program taken up.” This also means that it leaves much less time to show off intricate footwork in other routines.
Have you ever feel this way with your work? We spent so much time on just getting ready to do the work than actually doing the work!
Let me give you a few examples. To arrange a 30-minute meeting, it may take a few email cycles over the course of a few days to find the time that works for everyone and book a room that’s available. To prepare a board meeting, you have to look up the previous meeting minutes, gather the latest stats from a few different people to put together a board deck. To solicit a business meeting with someone in another city, in addition to booking the flights a lot of prep work is required to look up the information about the company and the person you are about to meet.
For some fortune people, they may have administrative assistants to help with these tasks. In many cases, we have to DIY. Though these are all important tasks, they are delegatable and menial tasks, which could be and should be done by a machine rather than a human.
I can totally imagine in the future every employee can have their own automated assistant so that they can focus on tasks that only humans can do.
So, when I met with Roy Pereira, CEO and co-founder of Zoom.ai recently, I totally get his mission. In his own words:
Zoom.ai mission is to give everyone in the company their own automated assistant so that they can focus on their higher-value job duties.
At the moment, Zoom.ai can handle tasks such as meeting scheduling, meeting preparedness, introductions to people you want to meet, travel logistics, and more through a simple chat interface.
But this is just the beginning. Through machine learning, Zoom.ai can become smarter and smarter over time and can take on even more. The number of tasks that can be automated is infinite. Most importantly, as Zoom.ai becomes the fabric of the company, it can provide bird’s-eye view and insights about the company that it couldn’t possibly gather before.
Today, we are very privileged to become an investor in Canadian Innovation Awards New Startup of the Year winner Zoom.ai as part of its $3.1 million seed extension funding round led by Evolution Equity Partners with backing from Betaworks, BDC, Good News Ventures and North Spring Capital. Look forward to supporting the Zoom.ai team on this journey.