What if we could speak Words of Life that transform those under our influence and ignite fires of intrinsic motivation? What if those we lead found great purpose in what they do and worked at their jobs with all their heart? Isn't that what leaders, parents and teachers really want? Ultimately, don't we hope to foster intrinsic motivation so that the individuals we lead become better employees, better students or better athletes? Recent discoveries of brain science and the wisdom of top CEO's that Dr. Tim Irwin interviewed for this book give us the answers we've long sought.
In most organizations, the methods used to provide feedback to employees such as performance appraisal or multi-rater feedback systems, in fact, accomplish the exact opposite of what we intend. We inadvertently speak Words of Death. Brain science tells us that these methods tend to engage a natural "negativity bias" that is hardwired in us all.
Science in recent years discovered that affirmation sets in motion huge positive changes in the brain. It releases certain neuro chemicals associated with well-being and higher performance. Amazingly, criticism creates just the opposite neural reaction. Leaders must forever ban the term, "Constructive Criticism." Brain science tells us that we can establish a connection between the employee's work and his or her aspirations.
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