While in Jamaica to speak about brain based renewal, I spotted diversity problems and possibilities alive and well from a car radio. En-route to the University of West Indies, radio guests discussed broken systems in general, and specifically Jamaican policies that got implemented without discussion from citizens. Opposition heated as… Read more »
Luckily, the human brain comes with unique equipment to free your mind, solve problems, or create adventures many crave but most people fail to imagine for themselves. Follow one or two new neuron pathways today and watch limiting habits fade as rigid ruts yield to infinite imaginings. It’s really about… Read more »
If gridlock feeds ego and shuts out brainpower could mindfulness and trust heal the heart of learning and leading? The more gridlock images we see flash across media, schools, and our lives, the more innovative, healing, and fun-filled images get lost. To learn and lead mindfully though, takes more… Read more »
Parents care deeply about their teens! Yet surveys show that too few parents of teens spot much incentive to enter some secondary schools. It doesn’t have to be that way LA’s “worst school” discovered when they reached out to parents and soon became the best. It turns out that many… Read more »
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Change often feels anything but easy …
Ever ask with that popular poster, How can you fly with eagles when you work with a bunch of turkeys?
It feels as if your brain is hard-wired more for chipping away at endless daily routines that tank your talents. You suit up to lead lofty adventures, yet too often ruts keep you pecking away like turkeys, day after day. Do you ever wonder why you slide back so easily into doing the same boring things that spin your wheels but go nowhere? It may seem reasonable once or twice. But over and over again?
Some people blame their supervisors, others say lack of funds keeps them down in the dust.
Are you aware though, that blame robs creative oomph, drowns change and leaves you stuck in ruts? Fault finding blocks focus from seeing those game-changing horizons that complainers only crave.
It doesn’t have to be that way, and your success often depends on how you handle detractors. When Gordon, a British Columbia School Superintendent, tried to involve parents in the daily interactions of his large district, several secondary school faculty threatened to quit.
Cynicism trumped his changes at every step …
Protesters insisted that when outsiders (namely parents) try to control their classrooms, they can no longer teach effectively and test scores suffer. Critics countered even small suggestions to include parents, with anxious retorts that parents know nothing about secondary school content, yet act as if they’re in charge.
For months Gordon tried to win over detractors, while a vocal few spread cynicism across schools averting any progress toward collaboration. Nothing worked and gloom spread across change suggestions like the aftermath of nuclear fallout spreads across a once-vibrant village.
Allies opened spigots of hope …
Then Gordon called a meeting with four highly-respected teachers.
After a few hours of brainstorming they’d integrated four disciplines under one umbrella topic – LIGHT. Each of the four classes met learning standards and yet lessons also included student-led topics that teens enjoy.
Enthusiasm carried that first meeting into shared pizza and late night noodling ….
Would cynicism and other workplace toxins decrease if we challenged broken systems by proposing innovative opportunities?
Design thinking’s defined in many ways, usually related to a process of problem solving that brings talents together, engages diverse thinkers, and creates innovative prototypes. It doesn’t work for most innovators. Why so?
Imagine a workplace where you design & implement an innovation the world craves. Meetings where you play with what if … kinds of challenges. Yet innovation isn’t ideas delivered in talks, but it’s a design you invent, lead, and perfect. How will you stack the deck today for more creative risks?
MBA students at the Bitner School of Business in New York lead innovation with the brain in mind during their course by the same name. See their dynamic innovation story over at Forbes and at Brain Based Biz. This leadership class differs from traditional lectures, presentations, or illustrated ideas. Students… Read more »