Neurosciences applied to the business world

💡 The origin of neuroscience

Emerging in the late 1960s, neuroscience has made great strides in the past decade. Today, they allow us to better understand the many signals sent to us by our brain and to understand the functioning of the nervous system. Thanks to neuroimaging or cerebral imaging, it is now possible to observe the brain of an individual performing a cognitive task (speaking, counting, remembering, etc.) and thus identifying areas and stimuli.

💪 Multiple fields of application in business

Neuropedagogy, neuroeducation, neuronutrition, neuropsychology, neuroeconomics… neurosciences have gradually taken over all spheres of our daily lives, and of course the business world has not escaped it. They not only make it possible to develop the emotional intelligence of each actor in companies, to better manage the motivation and involvement of employees, but also to promote collective intelligence.

Adapt management to the functioning of the brain

Neuroscience offers the possibility of better understanding how everyone works, individually and as a team. ” When I see someone arriving angry, I start by telling them to sit down and ask themselves why they are angry. If you understand the emotion felt by your interlocutor, you also know his need », exhibits Julien Brunet for Capital.

Mastering the emotions and mechanisms of the brain allow managers to have the right tools to develop talents, increase collective performance, reduce unproductive stress and increase motivation.

How? ‘Or’ What ? By integrating non-violent communication, emotional intelligence and positive feedback into your management style, by letting teams participate in decision-making during meetings or by accepting that they are wrong. ” It’s about adapting the world of work to brain function rather than the other way around », Specifies the researcher Pierre-Marie Lldo, director of the neurosciences department at the Institut Pasteur in an article Les Echos.

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Recruitment: exit the automatic brain mode

Brain research has demonstrated the existence and impact of cognitive biases in the selection of candidates. Or, unconscious and systematic reflexes of thought such as “He did HEC, he is necessarily good”, “He arrived late, he is not serious”.

The latter tend to influence decision-making according to irrelevant or even misleading criteria. Neurosciences make it possible to reduce this margin of error during recruitment. ” This involves inhibiting the unconscious automatic brain and stimulating the adaptive brain through better activation of the prefrontal cortex. This is how an individual can modify their mental representations (certainties, brakes, fears, limiting beliefs, etc.) », Explain Ricardo Croati and Erwan Devèze in a Harvard Business Review France article.

Concretely, to consider a candidate beyond his training, his gender, his physical appearance, and based solely on his cognitive skills, recruiters or managers can rely on psychometric tests to be given to candidates, such as :

  • The Atman psychometric test: it measures 11 personality dimensions (learning style, strength of character, behavior, competitiveness, motivation, confidence, confidence, sociability, nervous tension, emotional maturity, energy).
  • The PerformanSe Two BR test: it assesses the potential of an employee or candidate on the basis of 4 criteria (Influence, decision, efficiency, agility).
  • The Profil Pro 2 test from Central Test: it allows you to analyze the traits that influence the behavior and performance of an individual at work on the basis of 28 facets of personality and motivations.

This list is not exhaustive because there is a plethora of psychometric tests on the market. Namely that even if they include personality tests, they differ by their scientific approach: they are standardized, have standards and have been the subject of scientific validation.

For candidates: don’t panic! There is no right or wrong answer, this type of test only allows you to identify your innate and natural facets.

Professional training: the opportunity to strengthen neural networks

The brain is thrifty. When confronted with a mass of information, he will only retain what seems useful to him or what he has already acquired or repeated. This then calls for confirmation bias (we only retain what confirms our experiences), anchoring bias (we hold on to our first impression despite the explanations) or even availability bias (we only retain information which arrive the fastest, the most recent or surprising, for example).

The parade ? Understand and use new information very often. For example, by increasing the number of tests which are great memorization tools, and by alternating between theory and practice learning modes. By regularly validating your knowledge through quizzes to gradually correct your mistakes and anchor your knowledge more deeply.

« Studies in cognitive science show that active learning strategies amplify and solidify neural networks allowing recall of knowledge or behaviors learned later, unlike passive learning. », Detail Doctors in neuroscience for L’Usine Nouvelle.

And as the brain experiences a slowdown every 10 to 20 minutes, the learner experiences a drop in attention. It is therefore preferable to base the training on a succession of theoretical, practical and / or discussion time.

Quality of life at work: activate the right neurological circuits

According to an OpinionWay study carried out in 2018, happy employees increase productivity by 12%. And here again the neurosciences have an interesting role.

For example, when you observe someone, the brain will activate certain areas of the brain or “mirror neurons” which can generate emotional contagion. ” Our brain has been shown to have a preference for positive feelings. This is the reason why he reacts quickly to a happy face and the smile is so contagious. », Details Olivier De Ladoucette for Our Time.

Thus, a positive, smiling or enthusiastic personality will subconsciously inspire the brains around him and create neural dispositions linked to this state.

Another lever put forward by researchers: recognition. ” It activates the neurological reward circuits on which motivation, confidence and social cohesion are based. “, valued Olivier Oullier for Les Echos. Nothing better to stimulate it than a neuro-benevolent environment a corporate culture in which employees feel free to express themselves and to experiment.

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