Here is another valuable Management Tip of the Day from Harvard Business Review. To sign up for a free subscription to any/all HBR newsletters, please click here.
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Solving big problems and making critical business decisions often requires you to activate different parts of your brain: the analytic network, which helps you solve problems and make decisions, and the empathic network, which enables you to scan an environment and be open to new ideas.
o To learn how to toggle between the two, start by figuring out which network is your “go-to.” Are you more likely to focus on concrete facts and probabilities? Or do you tend to reflect more on your emotions and the emotions of those around you?
o Practice exercising the neural network that isn’t your default. For example, you can develop your empathic network by spending 15 minutes each day in a conversation where you’re focused on understanding the other person, not solving their problem.
o To work on your analytic network, you might schedule specific time periods to complete certain tasks and then hold yourself accountable, even if you don’t have firm deadlines.
The more you practice each of these mindsets, the more flexible and dexterous you’ll be as a manager — in any situation that arises.
This tip is adapted fromby Melvin Smith, Ellen Van Oosten, and Richard E. Boyatzis
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Here’s a direct link to dozens of other Management Tips.