Monday, April 19, 2010

Whole Brain Thinking

This from my colleague, Ken Wall, of
Although intended for practitioners of the Neethling Brain Instrument it answers questions often asked by people interested in the importance of identifying thinking preferences.

"Why do I need to know how I think?"
I'm sure like us you have been asked this question many times! It's competing for the 'most frequently asked question' prize, along with, "Where is an understanding of thinking preference most useful?" and "Why do you have so many versions of the NBI profile?"

At the beginning of many of our workshops and speaking engagements we often ask people to make a list of all the roles they have. The list is typically a very long one! Even after a few minutes a group of half a dozen people will typically come up with more than fifty roles, including parent, teacher, sports coach, transport provider, cook, maintenance person, car mechanic, partner, husband, wife, brother, son, footballer, golfer, carer, accountant and so on. The list includes many roles as you can see, which any individual will typically perform at home, at work, at school, and in a social or sporting setting.

During the workshop we will speak about the NBI and thinking preferences, show how people with different ways of thinking see the world differently and have vastly different expectations and behaviours, and why our way of thinking colours our perception of others.

At the end of the workshop we then ask the participants to return to their list of roles and we ask them to consider, "In which of these roles would an understanding of thinking preferences help you manage that role better?"

Without exception, every group ALWAYS ticks every role! That reflects the real benefit of understanding how you prefer to think, and of course, how others see the world and how you can work with them more effectively.

As an NBI Licensed Practitioner, you now have 22 different NBI profiles to choose from! The range of potential applications is limited only by our own imagination. There are even more benefits to be gained by using two or more NBI profiles together, as the following examples show.

Preferences, Skills and Leadership Style.
A number of our practitioners are using these three profiles together in leadership and team development programs. In short, the Preference profile paints a picture of the overall thinking preferences. This is how the person likes to see things. The Skills profile shows what the person believes are their core skill sets, and the Leadership Style profile shows how that person likes to behave when they take on the role of leader.

What can we conclude from that set of information?

Very often the three profiles show quite significant differences. The practitioner now has the task of working with the individual, either privately or in a group setting, to unravel the mystery. In following good facilitation and coaching strategy, this is probably best done through asking questions rather than taking on the role of the fortune teller!

What would it be like to work for a leader that had a thinking preference in one quadrant but a leadership preference in another? What could you ask about the authenticity of their behaviour? What will the leader look like and sound like to the people working for him/her? And what would it mean if the Skills profile matched only one of the other two profiles, or perhaps didn't match the others at all?

If all three profiles were more or less the same, does that mean that the leader is better? Are they more consistent? Or does it mean they are intolerant and inflexible?

The NBI profiles provide the NBI Practitioner with a very valuable insight into what questions need to be asked, and answered, in the leadership development journey.

Thinking preferences - and training dogs!
This is perhaps the most unusual use to date for the NBI Preference profile! We spent some time talking to the professional trainer at a dog obedience class. Our contention was that dogs only learn from L2 (repeat the command) and R2 (give praise on completion). So the successful dog owner will focus on L2 and R2 behaviour under instruction from the professional. Repeat and confirm the command and praise the dog accordingly.

Dog owners with L2 and R2 preferences therefore had a built in advantage!

But what if the dog owner was from another quadrant? The impatient L1 or the,"It's near enough" R1? By getting the owners to think only in terms of L2 and R2 behaviour for the duration of the lesson, everyone left the lesson a little happier and more satisfied with the outcome. The only difficulty was getting the dogs to complete their profile on-line!

Please call us if you would like to know more about NBI applications or facilitating with the NBI. If you are an NBI Practitioner and would like to try any of the profiles you haven't completed yet, call us for a user name and password for your selected profile.

Contact Information [Australia]
Whole Brain Thinking Pty Ltd
PO Box 672
Victoria 3106
Phone: +61 3 9850 9165
Fax: +61 3 9852 1190
skype: thethinkingnetwork

Contact Information [New Zealand]
Future Ege Ltd
693 Carrington Road
New Plymouth
New Zealand

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