Physical science is a continuum of breakthroughs that create new paradigms and possibilities. These advances enable new technologies, which enable new business models, which disrupt the status quo.
Disruptive technologies have created brilliant competitive opportunities (think Amazon in retail, Uber in transportation, AIrBNB in hospitality). But science is moving forward in other fields that can change the game, and produce new market leaders.
Using Brain Science to Create Competitive Advantage
Over the past decade, we’ve seen the kind of rapid breakthroughs in neuroscience that we’re accustomed to seeing in physics and technology. Understanding the brain, and the mechanics of how we think, learn, innovate and act, offers new opportunities to compete on the performance and productivity of our workforce.
Science has opened a new doorway to human potential and development, with three key findings that overturn centuries of conventional medical dogma:
1. Neurogenesis refers to the production of new brain cells – The breakthrough here is that the brain does not become static with age after all – Neuronal growth takes place continually, through adulthood.
2. Neuroplasticity refers to the ability of mature neurons in the brain to change in response to stimuli – dampening, strengthening or creating new networks, patterns and pathways.
3. The mind can change the brain – This is the foundational lesson of mindfulness research – What we pay attention to, and the way we pay attention to it, physically changes the structure and function of our brain.
A Process With Predictable and Positive Results
So, mindfulness is no longer a metaphysical construct that requires faith, or belief, or adherence to any brand of religion or spirituality. It is a science-proven process for neural training that delivers predictable and remarkably positive results.
Among those results are reduced stress, anxiety, depression, chronic illness, absenteeism and health care costs – any one of which is sufficient to generate an attractive ROI. But the big news goes way beyond wellness. It’s that mindfulness builds character traits from the inside out – strengthening qualities like positivity, motivation, accountability, self-awareness, compassion and emotional intelligence.
Qualities That We Hire For, and Manage Towards
These are qualities that we hire for, and manage our people towards – now, we have a process to train them into our workforce. The organization that helps people transform in this way creates a disruptive human capital advantage – because no matter the marketplace, the competitor with the happiest, healthiest, most creative, most cohesive workforce wins.
The Neuroscience of Mindful Business Performance
Mindfulness produces outcomes that can be directly applied improve business results. This report organizes those outcomes across Health and Wellness, Cognitive Performance and Emotional Intelligence, and suggests their impact on competencies in leadership, innovation, engagement, communication and productivity.
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Institute for Organizational Mindfulness (IOM) is a membership association of researchers, educators and executives, with a shared mission to bring science-based neural training into the mainstream of business, healthcare, education and government. We're working to create a global community of shared experience, conduct research, define standards and practices, develop educational programs, and determine the measures, metrics and analytics for organizational mindfulness.