Harvard Business Review

Harvard Warns Grads AI Will Make Them Jobless

One of the world’s most prestigious business journals, The Harvard Business Review, is sounding warning bells about AI’s impact on “elite” business consultants. Top consulting firms such as Bain and McKinsey are disproportionately staffed by Harvard Business School (HBS) graduates, and first-rank consulting firms now charge Fortune 500 companies astronomical fees of $300 per hour or more. Consulting as an industry earned nearly $60 billion in 2016. But according to the Review, the consulting industry is facing severe disruption, because many of HBS’s elite grads will soon be outdone by AI: “…a great deal of what is paid for with consulting services is data analysis and presentation. Consultants gather, clean, process, and interpret data from disparate parts of organizations. They are very good at this, but AI is even better.” Notably missing from the article was any discussion of the economic or personal impact on the consulting industry as a whole, or how imperiled HBS grads should prepare for it. —AK