Wisdom From The Women Leading The AI Industry, With Liziana Carter of GROW AI

Authority Magazine
Authority Magazine
Published in
7 min readJan 27, 2022

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Courage. It’s the only virtue you can’t fake. Whether it’s AI or any other life goal, you need the courage to go after it and make it happen. I’m an accountant at my core, and I had no clue how AI works. I taught myself AI, and once I could afford it, I paid other experts for their time to teach me more. Then I hired intelligent people to work on my AI team, and I learned even more from them. There’s a solution to every problem; you have to be stubborn enough to find it.

As part of our series about the women leading the Artificial Intelligence industry, I had the pleasure of interviewing Liziana Carter.

Liziana Carter is the founder and CEO of GROW AI, a chatbot agency that uses conversational artificial intelligence (AI) to instantly connect consumers to eCommerce businesses via Facebook Messenger, Instagram DM Automation and WhatsApp automation. Carter has been featured in Entrepreneur, Business Insider, Tech Times and more.

Thank you so much for joining us in this interview series! Can you share with us the ‘backstory” of how you decided to pursue this career path in AI?

In May 2020, when COVID-19 hit, I was at my 4th failed business in 6 years. After quitting my position in the Microsoft space, I’d opened a chatbot agency in December 2019, but made the mistake of targeting local businesses like gyms and medspas, which quickly went out of business with COVID.

So, I went back to the drawing board and looked to pivot. At the same time, I came across School of Bots in a Facebook group and bought their course to get better at bot building. They’d mentioned AI in their course but weren’t teaching it. So, I looked up Dialogflow, which is Google’s AI and works integrated with Facebook Messenger chatbots, and I taught myself how to use it.

From there, I started getting all sorts of ideas on how to use it to drive sales for eCommerce businesses, which had become my new target market after realizing how much it had blown up with COVID.

What lessons can others learn from your story?

Success takes years, and 90% of it can be boiled down to consistently doing the obvious thing for an uncommonly long period of time without convincing yourself that you’re smarter than you are while continuing to see the world as it is and not as you’d wish it to be. I recently saw it put into words by Shane Parrish, and it expresses 100% what I’ve been doing over the last seven years.

Can you tell our readers about the most interesting projects you are working on now?

We’re taking dialogue-driven shopping experiences to the next level. We’re building highly complex pre and post-purchase use cases to deliver an extraordinary level of attention to our clients’ Facebook and Instagram followers, with the purpose of capturing them as chatbot subscribers, moving them away from the algorithm and into our clients’ pockets by converting them into returning shoppers.

We design conversations that dive deep and understand them as individuals with unique needs, what they want, and their dreams. And we try to help them get it (usually, the solution lies in one or more of our clients’ products or services). Then we continue to re-engage that audience on an ongoing basis and leverage all the data we collect from previous conversations to refine their experience with the brand with each future interaction. At the same time, this data allows our client to better understand its audience’s buying pathways and what makes them click.

None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?

Natasha Takahashi from School of Bots. Everything she taught in her courses clicked with me, and I followed through on everything. She continues to mentor me. For that, I am beyond grateful because coming across her changed my life and gave me the freedom of finding something that challenged me then falling in love with doing it.

What are the 5 things that most excite you about the AI industry? Why?

In my line of work, its ability to solve problems on the spot and deliver the immediacy consumers now expect when interacting with their favorite brands online. Then, creating highly personal interactions that are contextual to a shopper’s unique needs, thus helping them progress faster through the buying journey. And finally, its ability to engage users in meaningful interactions that matter to them.

In a world that is moving faster every day and where everyone wants everything now, using AI to keep up the pace is leverage. It allows you to get rid of cumbersome tasks that take up time to free more time for the things that matter, like spending quality time with your family, running or designing a business.

What are the 5 things that concern you about the AI industry? Why?

On a high level, thinking too far ahead, too fast. On a granular level, how we use the trust people put in AI when engaging with it. AI today comes down to the morals and ethics of its creator. AI doesn’t have morality, fairness, or ethics on its own, so it needs to follow a pattern recognition built-in by its designer. At the same time, we’re seeing people have no issue putting their trust in AI applications today, so using that trust wisely, particularly when it comes to using data that’s being shared, is imperative.

As you know, there is an ongoing debate between prominent scientists, (personified as a debate between Elon Musk and Mark Zuckerberg,) about whether advanced AI has the future potential to pose a danger to humanity. What is your position about this?

AI today is only ‘pattern recognition,’ which is far from ‘creative thinking’ or AI General Intelligence. It’s machine learning around how to perform specific tasks. In my research on the topic, Naval Ravikant’s stand is the one that makes the most sense: first, we don’t know how the brain or intelligence work (at all). Second, we’ve never modeled an amoeba, let alone a human brain. Lastly, there’s this assumption that all computations are happening on the neuron level, whereas nature is very parsimonious, it uses everything at its disposal.

There’s a lot of machinery inside the cell that’s doing calculations unaccounted for. With this in mind, the best estimate is that it will take 50 years of Moore’s law before we can simulate what’s going on inside the cell, and probably 100 years before we can build a brain that can simulate inside the cells. So, saying that we’re going to model a neuron and set it on/off is simplistic.

Moreso, Naval argues that there’s no such thing as general intelligence, as every intelligence is contextual within the context of the environment that it’s in, so you’d have to create and account for the environment around it as well. At this point, we’re only solving deterministic, finite problems using large amounts of data, and we call it AI. We won’t see more than this, not in our lifetime at least.

What can be done to prevent such concerns from materializing? And what can be done to assure the public that there is nothing to be concerned about?

Not thinking too far ahead too fast would be a great start. At this point, we don’t have proof that says we’re anywhere close to general AI.

How have you used your success to bring goodness to the world? Can you share a story?

One of the main problems we solve with AI and automation is reducing frustration amongst shoppers looking to connect with their favorite brands online and purchase. There’s nothing more rewarding than solving a problem on the spot and gaining back time to use it on things that matter, like spending quality time with your family or friends.

As you know, there are not that many women in your industry. Can you share 3 things that you would advise to other women in the AI space to thrive?

Remain calm, focused, and unintimidated. Do the work nobody wants to do for long enough, and you will thrive.

Can you advise what is needed to engage more women into the AI industry?

Courage. It’s the only virtue you can’t fake. Whether it’s AI or any other life goal, you need the courage to go after it and make it happen. I’m an accountant at my core, and I had no clue how AI works. I taught myself AI, and once I could afford it, I paid other experts for their time to teach me more. Then I hired intelligent people to work on my AI team, and I learned even more from them. There’s a solution to every problem; you have to be stubborn enough to find it.

What is your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share a story of how that had relevance to your own life?

Eventually.. Execution beats luck, consistency beats intensity and curiosity beats smart” (Shane Parrish)

Over the last seven years, I’ve executed my ideas (good or bad) daily, and I’ve asked an annoying amount of questions. I have no exceptional talent, I’ve just put in the work, asked questions, created problems (solved problems), and iterated on my previous actions.

You are a person of great influence. If you could start a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. :-)

I’d most likely start a movement or mentor more women into tech. To empower and help them find a career or build a business in this space that some don’t even think they can achieve. But they can.

How can our readers follow you on social media?

Look up Liziana Carter on LinkedIn and you’ll find me.

This was very inspiring. Thank you so much for joining us!

My pleasure :)

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