And continuing on this theme from my last post on brain science and leadership, I read the paper from Rock and Schwartz on the Neuroscience of Leadership. Some great points, particularly that behaviourism and humanism are overrated management approaches and that the preferred model of leadership is to encourage people to work out the solutions on their own. This is not just about empowerment but actively working with people’s brains to harness the energy that is created when problems are solved. Brains are pattern making organs with an innate desire to create novel connections and can undergo significant change in response to new environmental signals. The paper states that the key is to focus attention on desirable practices and behaviours as then, the brain changes its physiology to meet the new pattern. Leave the problem behaviours in the past and focus on identifying and creating new behaviours.
Overcoming resistance to change is easier when the brain goes through the moment of insight when new connections are created. But that is not all. Training may yield these insights but the addition of follow-up coaching helps to embed the insights that occurred in the training session into the brain.
Many old adages came to mind while reading the article. Practice makes perfect was one. Be the change you want to see was another. Definitely “food for thought!”