Neuroscience – will you be an early adopter?

 

Let’s run this information very quickly through a Neuroscience lens:

1. Organisations are asking more of their people

What we observe in the workplace and know in our ‘gut’:

  • People are under more stress
  • Gaps in skill shortages grow
  • People are doing things they didn’t necessarily ‘sign up for’
  • Motivation drops
  • Absenteeism increases

What Neuroscience helps us put into language:

  • Uncertainty increases in the work environment raising fear levels in the brain
  • Capacity to focus attention declines because people are more prone to distraction
  • People experience increased fatigue where they may be working in areas they naturally prefer to avoid
  • Unexpected reactions become more prevalent as the brain becomes fatigued in its predicting work to keep safe
  • Emotional contagion happens quickly as people pick up unconscious signals from Leaders

 

2. Organisations are asking different skills of their Leaders

What we observe in the workplace and know in our ‘gut’:

  • Leaders are under more stress
  • Not all Leaders want to be Leaders
  • Leaders are doing things they didn’t necessarily ‘sign up for’
  • Resignations increase, resulting in leadership and management instability
  • Leadership authenticity becomes all important

What Neuroscience helps us put into language:

  • Fatigue increases as working memory from the brain uses more and more energy to cope day to day
  • Decision making quality declines with less time for ‘considered’ thinking
  • Leaders become disconnected from organisational strategy and direction
  • Performance of the team/department decline as it moves from proactive to reactive management
  • Team members lose connection and trust with their Leaders

 

3. Organisations are experiencing an alarming rate of employee disengagement.

What we observe in the workplace and know in our ‘gut’:

  • Lack of respect for team structures e.g., meeting attendance, start/finish times, reporting processes
  • Low levels of collaboration and creativity in solution finding
  • Team morale declines
  • Productivity slips
  • Negative trends in leading Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) emerge

What Neuroscience helps us put into language:

  • It doesn’t matter how much you pay someone, people are driven intrinsically to feel valued and to add value
  • Insights occur in creative, purposeful environments leading to organisational innovation
  • Trust in Leadership is a vital contribution to team performance and employee engagement

 

Why I am an early adopter

As a People, Process and Performance industry, we have been very good at developing and providing a plethora of tools and methodologies for designing learning events, analysing employee compliance, predicting trends in people performance and managing organisational change.

For me, Neuroscience scientifically explains ‘my gut feelings’ grounded in experience. I like that I can then translate this information into a shared practical language and solution for organisational leadership to better understand, quantify and put into practice.

Having evidence from science not only helps me deliver a clearer picture for my clients of the service I provide, but there is also the opportunity for growing awareness about the organisation’s ‘collective brain’ as a very valuable asset toward the organisation’s bottom line.

GartnerHypeCycleAdaptation2

Image source: www.designdamage.com

 

Interested in finding out more?

Here are a very few references I have found valuable in my continuing journey with applying Neuroscience in the People, Process and Performance work I undertake.

Websites for a taster:

Books to further your interest:

  • Wired for Life: Martina Sheehan and Susan Pearse
  • Brain Smart: Dr Jenny Brockis
  • Brain Savvy HR: Jan Hills
  • Your Brain at Work: David Rock

Building detail:

  • Diploma Neuroscience of Leadership: Neuresource Group
  • The Great Courses: The Neuroscience of Everyday Life

 

References for this article:

Brain Smart: Dr Jenny Brockis

Brain Savvy HR: Jan Hills

Forbes Article 2009

Gallup: State of the Global Workforce Report 2013

The Forum Corporation:  Whitepaper Seven Leadership Development Trends 20/2/2013

The Great Courses: The Neuroscience of Everyday Life, Course Guidebook

Wired for Life:  Martina Sheehan and Susan Pearse

Your Brain at Work: David Rock

 

Image Sources

http://www.designdamage.com/to-be-or-not-to-be-the-job-question/#axzz3Qv6IVgoT

State of the Global Workforce Report 2013

The Forum Corporation Whitepaper Seven Leadership Development Trends 20/2/2013

www.Delta7.com