« Chris Fralic on Leadership | Main | SuperSize Me! Not »

Jun 8
The Neuroscience of Leadership


I was intrigued to read at Strategies + Business how change is connected increasingly to research about the human brain, and how places like Toyota use this research for gain. The article…The Neuroscience of Leadership by David Rock… author of, Quiet Leadership: Six brain writing.jpgSteps to Transforming Performance at Work … and Jeffrey Schwartz… co-author of,  The Mind and the Brain … showed how successful leaders effectively change their own or other people’s behavior…. Has that been your experience…?

The authors found that change comes faster to those who “start by leaving problem behaviors in the past; focus on identifying and creating new behaviors. Over time, these may shape the dominant pathways in the brain. This is achieved through a solution-focused questioning approach that facilitates self-insight, rather than through advice-giving.” Does that discovery surprise you?

They tell the  story of Mike, a pharmaceutical CEO, whose direct report Rob, had hired three only of six new team members required in his goals. Rather than focus on Rob’s nonperformance, it was recommended that he focus Rob’s attention on “the new circuits he needs to create to achieve his objectives in the future.” Do you agree?

The authors made the suggestion, “ Mike could ask Rob, ‘What do you need to do to resolve challenges like this?’ Such a question helps the person redirect his insight that “he needs to remind himself of his annual objectives more regularly, to keep his eyes on the prize.” Then… in order to ensure ongoing success … Mike should regularly ask Rob about his progress.” Such reminders would help Rob to grow connectors for the goals he still needs to achieve.

There is more research evidence that “In a brain that is also constantly pruning connections while making new ones, positive feedback may play a key functional role as “a signal to do more of something.” The goal is to help a person return to the focus of an outcome as the most efficient way to worth with…rather than against the human brain…

Using these ideas… Toyota’s production system, engages employees at every level of the company to create an awareness of their process and through this awareness to improve what they do daily. At Toyota employees are encouraged to talk about possibilities for making things better, and are helped to “train their brains to make new connections.” What could such encouragement and daily awareness of how to improve what people accomplish…do for your staff…?


2 Comments/Trackbacks




The implementation of strategy ultimately requires a change in the behavior of employees. New research conducted over the last two decades has produced a more accurate view of human behavior change resulting from an integration of psychology (the study of the human mind and human behavior) and neuroscience (the study of the anatomy and physiology of the brain). Start by leaving problem behaviors in the past; focus on identifying and creating new behaviors. Over time, these may shape the dominant pathways in the brain. This is achieved through a solution-focused questioning approach that facilitates self-insight, rather than through advice-giving. This all sounds too easy. Is the answer to all the challenges of change just to focus people on solutions instead of problems, let them come to their own answers, and keep them focused on their insights?” Apparently, that’s what the brain wants.

Thanks for your thoughtful response, "Seattle News."

Change in the behavior of me usually works best, as you imply - and it works with the notion of looking for solutions rather than dwelling on problems. I've respinded also in http://www.brainbasedbusiness.com/2006/07/problems_that_spark_solutions.html

What do you think?

submit a trackback

TrackBack URL for this entry:

post a comment

Name, Email Address, and URL are not required fields.





Comment Preview

« Chris Fralic on Leadership | Main | SuperSize Me! Not »

Advertise

Related Resources

sponsored ads



Incredible Hall of Acclaim.

subscribe


Prefer Email?
Subscribe below-

Current News

Support This Blog

My site was nominated for The Blogitzer!

business social media

Use these fast growing business social media sites to promote your business, feature your products, spotlight your business leaders, create links, and drive traffic back to your company site, all for free!

we support unitus

PRWeb

Influencer