Joe Rogers is the Founder and CEO of WorkDone Inc. The company enables organizations to seamlessly retain corporate memory and automate business processes between major SaaS platforms with no training or programming required. Additionally, as human beings often make processing errors, WorkDone saves customers time, labor and money by retaining operational best practices as corporate memory, also known as Work Heuristics™. WorkDone allows organizations to avoid the costs incurred when valued employees change status. The retained institutional knowledge allows interoperable WorkDone Agents to create systems of intelligence so that nothing is lost when an employee retires or leaves the company.
Joe Rogers is a Harvard-educated serial entrepreneur born & raised in California with over two decades of experience starting & growing technology, consulting and wellness businesses. He is also Chairman and co-founder of RGB Projects Inc., an Enterprise Content Management and Business Process Management consultancy and IBM business partner founded in 2005. He has extensive experience working with government, insurance, energy and financial services clients in Southeast Asia, the Middle East, and throughout the U.S.
Joe Rogers’s certifications include Project Management Professional (PMP), PMI-Agile Certified Professional (PMI-ACP), Certified ScrumMaster (CSM), and Certified Scrum Product Owner (CSPO), as well as a BS degree in Computer Science from Harvard.
Delivering Customer-Specific Work-Related Insights
Joe believes that the society is on the cusp of a major economic and social revolution with regard to automation due to artificial intelligence and robotics. The penetration of AI today is like websites in the early days of the internet where companies had no idea that websites would soon be a requirement to conduct business. WorkDone provides a painless onramp for companies to take advantage of machine learning with regard to their internal operational processes. WorkDone clients can avoid the painful costs associated with losing institutional knowledge when key employees walk out the door due to retirement or job change. With roughly 75 million baby boomers set to retire (almost one-quarter of the US population), WorkDone will play a crucial role in helping the economy dodge this costly bullet.
Shaping Success with Past Lessons
Joe is constantly learning how to better motivate, support and direct a team of people toward achieving a shared goal. Growing up he always knew that he would be self-employed involved with some form of technology. His first contract was straight out of college, and while he knew how to code, he didn’t know how to make an invoice. Thus, began a series of rapid-fire lessons where Joe had to learn things very quickly, often-times on demand while working at a customer site. His education as a leader (and a human) is ongoing and he expects that will be the case till someone puts him out to pasture.
Winning Over Challenges
Talking about the primal challenges faced during the initial phase of his journey, Joe states, “a shorter list would be which challenges did I not face starting out. In the beginning, I was beset with low self-confidence, no self-awareness, a total lack of business savvy, social awkwardness and complete cluelessness in political situations. Need I go on?”
Progressive Traits of a Leader
Joe believes an innovative leader needs to be fearless, authentic, self-aware, heart-centered, a good communicator, open-minded with tunnel vision focus, and a continuous learner who knows when to pivot.
Innovating Products for Better Customer-Reach
Online shopping, the daily commute, TV viewing habits are all examples of how AI (machine learning) is increasing the quality of our lives. Joe firmly believes the best software is the kind that doesn’t require special training. In the best case, the software is invisible. WorkDone is invisible software with highly visible results. In the future, the best AI will be hidden and users won’t even be aware of it.
He seems to have an aptitude for anticipating when and how to combine disparate technologies to create something new which solves common business problems. Joe has no idea how he does it, it just happens – usually when he is not in front of a computer.
Disruption Sculpting Effective Leader
Joe feels the latest flavor of disruptive technology has very little to do with being an effective leader. The role of a leader has not changed over the years while the techniques and approaches have evolved. People will voluntarily follow a leader who inspires them.
“While disruptive technology often leads to innovation, innovation doesn’t require disruptive technology. To his way of thinking, innovation is more often the result of fresh original thinking than some new whiz-bang technology (IMHO),” he added.
Looking Forward to the Future
Commenting on the future of AI, Joe said from a technical and commercial perspective, the sky is the limit for the AI industry. More concerning, however, are the ethical and socioeconomic considerations that need to be debated resulting in policy for AI creators. For example, the AI industry needs to proactively address the issue of job automation and displaced labor. In the drive to cut costs through automation, businesses may be bankrupting its own future customers. Case in point, even Henry Ford paid his workers enough to afford to purchase a Model T.
Historically in the US, companies have wilfully avoided addressing the negative side-effects of their products/services (think environmental pollution and social media manipulation) until it was too late and the damage was done. In the case of AI, detrimental unintended consequences need to be anticipated and proactively mitigated or avoided completely. “The AI industry needs to mature as a whole into the benevolent caretaker of the various aspects of society it impacts otherwise society will suffer. It is critical that the abundance generated by AI be appreciated by all of society without succumbing to the false requirements that there must be winners and losers,” Joe emphasized.
WorkDone takes corporate social responsibility seriously. Given the coming wave of job destruction and creation, WorkDone’s mission is to support the transition and reinvention of workers displaced by automation to their next area of vitality as smoothly as possible. For this reason, WorkDone was created as a Public Benefit Corporation whose bylaws commit a percentage of revenue to assist displaced workers.
Radiating Wise Counselling
For leaders who are multi-dimensional with depth to their being, Joe’s best counsel to them is to learn how to listen, how to tell stories and how to be vulnerable. These skills, motivated by a servant leadership philosophy, will allow the heart-centered leader to attract the best people, build the best teams and achieve the biggest objectives and, with a little luck, develop a new crop of outstanding leaders.