Recently, I attended Brain For Business this is a new series of events at the Science Gallery, that explores the latest findings from neuroscience and psychology and applies them to the world of business and entrepreneurship. Hosted by Jess Kelly from Newstalk, the series will feature neuroscientist Shane O’Mara in conversation with some of Ireland’s leading business experts.
This first instalment, included Stephen McIntyre, Managing Director of Twitter Ireland. Combining science and experience, this discussion panel covered areas from IQ and sleep to attitude and the role of the environment on one’s ability and success.
Here are some of the things I found most interesting from the event:
The most advanced social network on the planet
With millions of neurons, the brain can be seen as the most advanced social network on the planet at the moment.
The brain consumes approx. 20% of the bodies’ energy. Sleep and nutrition are vital to optimal running of our brains. A lost night’s sleep can temporarily decrease your IQ by up to 15 points while a glucose or caffeine hit can temporarily keep us in focus. IQ is not to be overvalued as it is a measure of intelligence and not attitude or ability.
The brain has 2 sections for creative and rational taught. Closed eyes activate the creative side of the brain. To improve your creative thinking, get your information and close your eyes to reflect on the task at hand.
Our perceptions and behaviours are shaped by our mind-set, this can be changed through effort and reflection depending on our neuro- plasticity. Our mind-sets are also shaped by our environment such as our childhood upbringing, current employment and friends/family.
Money is not the sole motivator
Money is not the sole motivator driving us. While it is important, people can be strongly motivated by the challenge to do a great job, leave a successful legacy, do well in front of peers or receive praise from a manager. Stephen McIntyre (Twitter) see 3 key motivators as Autonomy, mastery and Purpose. When these are aligned to company goals, great things can happen.
The Flynn effect states that our IQ evolves over time. Over the past 5 decades, the general societal IQ has been increasing due to environmental factors such as increased education, nutrition and economic diversity.
Technology executives are younger than their counterparts in more established industries such as banking. Some of these have become recently sleep deprived fathers while others suffer jet lag from international travel to the likes of Silicon Valley. Shift workers suffer similar broken sleeping patterns which can reduce IQ and cause health problems proper sleep is not taken
Tech firms look for staff skilled in problem solving with a good attitude that use a solid method/process to solving problems.
People love taking about themselves, when we talk about ourselves the please centres of our brains activate. For your researchers, you could see if this is the case with bloggers and prosumers to social media etc.
Networking is a practice enjoyed by many as it not only allows us to build our professional network and skills but it can be personally rewarding also.
Keep it going on Twitter