The Neuroscience Of Leadership

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Organisations led by innovative leaders are highly eager to invest in people. They really want to create a high performance, agile, resilient and innovative culture

Ayesha Jahan Bibha is a Thought Leader and Neuroscience of Leadership Licensed Practitioner at EnHansen Performance Pty Ltd. She facilitates to transform the habit for leading success through speaking, training and executive coaching. Ayesha is a Neuroscience of Leadership Licensed Practitioner, iNLP Certified, skilled assessor on REDS Leadership Assessment Methodology, DiSC Assessment, EQ Self Assessment, Self-Resilient Assessment, and ORCE Behavior Assessment. She is also the sole proprietor for ayeshabibha.com from May 2015.
She has 10 years of professional experience in the fields learning and development, corporate training, consultancy, teaching and corporate field. She has facilitated around 1600 participants including youth to top team of good to great companies from Bangladesh, Malaysia, Sri Lanka, Uganda, Pakistan, Sweden, Turkey and Australia.
Her facilitation areas includes – Leading Self & Others Workshop, Advanced Corporate Communication Skill, Presentation Skill, Team at Excellence Program, Basic Leadership, Manage Self & Others, Train The Trainer (TTT), NLP Practitioner Program, Coaching and Mentoring Program, Assessment Center and Development Center, Vision-Mission-Value On Boarding Program, Goal and KPI session Setting etc.

You have facilitated a great number of participants from multinational companies. What were the challenges in bringing such a large group together? How is the diversity of the companies a productive platform?
Organisations led by innovative leaders are highly eager to invest in people. They really want to create a high performance, agile, resilient and innovative culture. However, the challenge lies in how quickly they can achieve this.
Two key words are diversity and productivity. They matter both internally and externally for an organization. It influences the customers, suppliers, vendors and other stakeholders.
Globalisation, generation gap, economic advantages, immigration opportunities, highly changed lifestyles etc. are all pushing diversity practices at a higher pace today. Healthy diversity practices are crucial regardless of their complexities. We all know that the number one challenge of today’s business is creativity. And a diverse practice literally can bring increased creativity, new attitudes, new language skills, better global understandings, new processes and solutions to difficult problems.

You were a research fellow of the Australian Academy of Business Leadership. How is research an essential component for leadership?
AABL is an academic research platform but to me, it as a platform of exchanging intelligence among deeper thinkers from different countries. We commonly believe that research is mostly based on theoretical practices and its analysis from different perspectives. Additionally, research can create the base for further development of organisational practices which is very important for them to understand. Accompanied with good to great organisational practices, these tools generate greater insight and help develop cognitive thinking.

How has your international experiences allowed you to train participants of various demographics?
I look for the commons rather than looking for the differences, especially when I am talking about interacting/communicating/delivering to people.
People from various demographics have different cultures, different practices or different ways of expression. However, they all feel in the same way. These feelings, emotions, empathy are happening within us unconsciously but constantly. Once you can reach that, you automatically can make rich communications. My previous practice on NLP (Neurolinguistic Programming) and my present passion on Neuroleadership (Neuroscience of Leadership and Performance) are making my belief stronger.

What is the importance of multiple assessments when it comes to leadership training and proficiency?
Currently it is known as the VUCA (Volatility, Uncertainty, Complexity and Ambiguity) world and it is the field where today’s leaders are playing. Different assessments can help leaders recognise their present state of leadership quality based on past behaviours. This is important to know the previous gap but they must not focus on this. Leaders need to focus on the future, on new ways, in more creative manners – this is the space where neuroscience is serving.

Imaging technologies such as Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) and Positron Emission Tomography (PET), along with brain wave analysis technologies such as Quantitative Electroencephalography (QEEG), have revealed hitherto unseen neural connections in the living human brain. How have these applications progressed the understanding of creating a better leaders in terms of programming the brain?
Traditionally, our practice of leadership was more about studying their behaviours. Technological advancement in neuroscience finds that the human brain’s process is much wider through subconscious inputs. The truth is we can’t think about what we are thinking when we are not aware of the thinking process. This is where technologies like fMRI, EEG and biometrics are creating a huge difference by integrating human behaviour with the functions of the human brain and the unconscious influences of emotions.

Neuroscience has identified Positive Emotional Attractor (PEA) as the key to successful leadership. Can you elaborate upon the necessity for this idea?
Neuroscience research is showing that to get sustained changes, leaders need to be coached about PEA first. When the leaders are following up, they need to be coached with the PEA 3-6 times more, than the Negative Emotional Attractors (NEA). That is how a leader can create a focus on new changes to make it sustainable. The more the focus, the more the physiological arousal, as well as the hard-wiring of the neural networks. That is the key to develop new habits. Through this dynamics of emotional contagion (PEA vs NEA), we can help an individual’s vision become a shared vision among two or more people.

 

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