When something is great, and not "too good to be true"

By William Seidman Do you trust the quick fix? I don’t, either. When someone insists they have “the answer” my skepticism kicks in. But once in a while, something that is simple also happens to be true. I’ve spent many years developing what amounts to a roadmap for organizational success. “Performance improvement” is only a small part of it. Here are the cornerstones: Positive Deviance – The science of positive deviance shows that the top performers in an organization (the true stars) consistently use images that provide a foundation for fair process and enhanced neural response to new learning. Specifically, the positive deviants strive to achieve a greater social purpose and will drive intensely to achieve the mastery needed to be great at their function. By articulating both their purpose and path to mastery in particular ways any organization can position itself for fair process and enhanced performance. Positive Images – Providing people with the opportunity to understand and make a significant contribution to achieving this greater social purpose gives them the sense of respect inherent in fair process. As such it triggers the positive neural responses reported by David Rock in Your Brain at Work and the motivational response reported by Dan Pink in Drive that cause people to become highly motivated. This is particularly powerful if done in a group producing the neural benefits of social learning Positive Practice – The neuroscience of learning is very clear that learning is wiring neurons into new patterns and that this wiring occurs through practice. Replicating a focused version of the positive deviant’s drive to mastery for everyone gives them the efficient, guided practice needed to produce extensive rewiring. Positive Reflection – Taking the time to think about the learning experiences both individually and as a group further reinforces the neural exercises and leads to development of new habits of self-directed learning. This is the essence of self-directed neuroplasticity (which could, in a sense also be called self-directed learning). Given our highly volatile and complex world, being a great self-directed learner is a requirement for effective leadership.]]>

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