Thursday, September 07, 2006

Want to change or lead it? Focus, energy and insight

At MPOW, our director is retiring, and in a few months we'll be interviewing candidates; we've hired lots of new whip-smart, motivated managers in the last few months; we're embarking on a new leadership initiative to encourage all staff to have more input into decisions and to make us a more nimble organization; oh, and we're rebuilding our entire suite of Web sites to create an online enviroment where our community can learn, explore, enjoy, create, and connect.

So, lots of change is afoot, and I thought this was an interesting article, The Neuroscience of Leadership.

Quick conclusions:

"Change is pain. Organizational change is unexpectedly difficult because it provokes sensations of physiological discomfort.

Behaviorism doesn’t work. Change efforts based on incentive and threat (the carrot and the stick) rarely succeed in the long run.

Humanism is overrated. In practice, the conventional empathic approach of connection and persuasion doesn’t sufficiently engage people.

Focus is power. The act of paying attention creates chemical and physical changes in the brain.

Expectation shapes reality. People’s preconceptions have a significant impact on what they perceive.

Attention density shapes identity. Repeated, purposeful, and focused attention can lead to long-lasting personal evolution."