Supporter Spotlight: Discover how Pepi Valderrama Utilises AI to Boost Productivity for Individuals and Teams

We recently caught up with Pepi, the owner of dePepi, and a valued supporter of Silicon Brighton. dePepi is a thriving local business dedicated to fostering personal and professional growth through expert coaching services. Specialising in empowering entrepreneurs on their path to financial independence, it also provides enriching courses designed to boost self-confidence and propel individuals toward their goals. Read on…

Can you share a bit about your background?

I’m a multifaceted creative with a background in law, anti fraud, background checks, team leading and coaching. I’m passionate about helping individuals become the best version of themselves. I also provide guidance for businesses to train their employees on enhancing productivity through effective AI prompting. I use a holistic approach providing tools, insights, and motivation to achieve dreams and create positive change in all areas of life. This includes harnessing the power of Artificial Intelligence (AI).

Did you come up through a “traditional” techie route or has your career taken twists and turns along the way?

I have a Master in Law by the University of Tokyo. However, I’ve always been curious about the tech world. It all started by wanting to design my own blog, using AI to enhance all I do. Since I first started tinkering with prompts, I saw the endless possibilities and started specialising on it. I’d say that I’m very far away from a “traditional” techie, but I’ve found it’s been exhilarating.

Reflecting on your career, is there a specific moment that stands out as pivotal or defining?

Yes, the moment I took the decision of wanting to create and control all aspects of my blog. That forced me to go out of my comfort zone and venture in the realm of “doing” instead of just “using” – this has been a blessing. Tough journey, don’t get me wrong, but an amazing one.

What piece of advice would you give your younger self as you embarked on your professional journey?

“Don’t take all advices, since many are biased.” I had some stops along my journey through following “expert advice” without blinking. Unfortunately, some of it comes biased and we need to pick and choose carefully if that piece of advice really has our best interest in mind.

Looking ahead, what’s your big prediction for the tech landscape in 2024?

My big tech prediction is that “AI literacy” will be the key to many people finding new jobs. I see AI changing the hiring arena even further, many jobs will disappear in favour of others appearing. However, I expect a period of “turmoil” where some companies will tinker with new roles and see what sticks. At the same time, we’ll see more cases of “shadow AI” applied in those companies that are taking their sweet time to implement AI internally, which is a mistake and a huge risk on how sensitive data is handled and how company secrets might end up in the wrong hands.

I would say the big push should be centred on “AI literacy”, and this year promises to further change the landscape in many industries and society.

Considering your involvement in Silicon Brighton and community-building, what does the concept of ‘community’ mean to you personally? How important is it in the tech industry?

To me community means more human connection. As we grow more automated – thanks to technology, we need to create spaces where we can be more human. Sharing experiences, points of view and making connections offline is crucial to not lose sight of the kind of future that we want to create. We’re social creatures, anyway.

How do you balance staying updated with the latest industry trends while ensuring continuous personal and professional growth? Any specific resources or practices you find particularly valuable?

I love Substack newsletters. It’s like an online community where instead of sharing and subscribing to people, you do to publications. I also like to follow news channels on Apple’s News app, and meet & greet people to talk about what’s happening. However, my biggest point of information is LinkedIn, I do most of the online connections there, and I try to share my views with others who like to talk about AI.

I’ve always been keen to learning new things, so I’m always learning something on the side. Most of the times out of curiosity and for fun. I believe that the more fun you have in all you do, the best equipped you’re (and open) to ride and change along with the times.

As someone who has contributed significantly to the community, how do you see mentorship playing a role in the development of the next generation of tech professionals?

Mentorship is crucial to help the next generation avoid our mistakes and learn from our journeys. They’ll do their own mistakes, but if they’re open to mentoring, they can avoid as many headaches as we had.

Is there any additional wisdom, experience, or anecdotes you’d like to share with our audience?

Read a lot…seriously. I know reading is in decline, but one of the things that has helped me learning, being always curious and expand my vocabulary has been reading all types of books. Don’t just stick to your usual favourite genre. Dive in the unknown!

Anything else you would like to promote to our community?

My book “You Lost Your Job. Now What? Surviving the AI Shift” is out on March 21st. You can pre-order it now at a lower price. If you’ve lost your job, think you will, or are open to enhancing your résumé, cover letter, and interviewing abilities with AI, or are simply curious, read it and tinker with all the prompts inside. You can find a link to the book here.

Also, I’m currently developing a Notion-based solution for startups and entrepreneurs to streamline applicant tracking and HR management.

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