MaST's Business Forum on Change

MaST's Business Forum on Change

Learning to Change: Increasing the acceptance of change by using the latest brain-friendly techniques

How do we help make change and learning easier?

This was the question that drew a large audience to the most recent Business Forum in London. 25 leaders responsible for their staff’s development came from sectors ranging from investment banks and retail, to the public sector. Delegates engaged in discussion about neuroscience and brain-friendly techniques, shared their own challenges, and explored ways to significantly increase the acceptance of change.

Some of the issues people brought to the discussion were:

  • “Getting Senior Leaders to change their ways”
  • “Dealing with insecurity around re-organisation”
  • “Getting Managers to buy-in to do effective appraisals”

This was not a Forum where you could just sit back and listen.  The group needed to grasp some complex theories about neuroscience, and then conduct a famous learning experiment to prove the theory.  The final analysis was relatively simple in theory, but harder in practice:  People remember things when they are linked with deeper meaning and emotions.

Although this may not have been totally new to some, to understand this further, teams were presented with a challenge to create a dynamic, multisensory three minute session to help people change – in 15 minutes!  Putting theory into practice is hard, yet there were some incredibly resourceful responses.

As well as being challenging and insightful, the Forum was also very practical, offering some top tips that can be applied immediately:

Top Tips:
The neural systems in the brain thrive on complexity. People may have heard this before, but it is a real challenge to do this well.

Next time you are having discussions about a new idea, try to build in to the message:

1. Personal emotions – e.g. telling people how you feel/felt in a situation
2. Multiple senses – e.g. videos, music, activity, talking
3. Fun, memorable ‘hooks’ that grab people's attention (e.g. media/news/pictures/statistics etc.)
4. Stories and personal anecdotes that combine emotion, senses and memorable hooks

We would love to know your ideas to help people learn and change in order to succeed and would welcome you to connect with MaST on LinkedIn.