Saturday, February 2, 2008

BRAIN TEASE

As a child I had the unique ability to excel in math and science and art and creative writing. This is not a common trait for the average person and often can cause problems with perception and communication. As in conversations, if you are talking to a Right side thinker (people who use the Right Cerebral Hemisphere of their brain which controls believed to control face recognition, visual imagery, artistic expression and spatial abilities) and speaking in linear terms or logic and actual science, you may have a person with limited interest and or comprehension in what you are trying to communicate. Same for Left sided thinkers (Left Cerebral Hemisphere of the brain is believed to house the control of Language, Math and Logistical Processing) whom may sit quietly with idle thoughts unraveling the secrets on the Universe.

Like all things in life, there is a balance to this human arrangement of evolution. From an anthropological view, the balance or shift in the numbers could have simulated the rise and fall of civilizations, from a sociological view, the balance would explain how some societies tried to control and or exterminate that balance, for psychologist, the means to test, predicts and or manipulate the balance line bookshelves with possibilities. Then we can’t leave out religion, which in its historical past, has either elevated or condemn the uses of human brain abilities. Ultimately the brain is that one muscle that is responsible for why MAN exist, from primate to civilized man, we owe our human existence to this balance.

A few years back I had to do screening for a project that I was assigned to manage. It was a simple task. I’d peel through a mountain of resumes (SPECIAL NOTE: Since the majority of people I worked with were Non-People of Color I specifically and purposefully looked for PEOPLE OF COLOR for which I found candidly bothered quite a few people) and I would find a few good candidates. Part of my charge was to ask the traditional INTERVIEWING questions. I mean, I even had a manual with a list of interviewing questions to ask. My favorite one was, “Where do you see yourself in 10 years?” I always hated that question because you can never answer it TRUTHFULLY. We all know that the real answer, if you could answer it that way, would be, “TAKING YOUR JOB AND REPLACING YOU” or “OWNING THIS COMPANY AND REPLACING YOU”, but you would never really say that and as the INTERVIEWEE, and I’d smell the LIE when you answered otherwise. So in my rebellious state, I created my own questions and scenarios to see if the people who I wanted to heir had the ability to THINK and if they did, HOW? This process was far superior to how a person answered a question and if I LIKED THEM, which are how most people are hired anyway.

Part of my interview required a BRAIN TEST. The company wanted me to use the Myers-Briggs testing method (which I have always called the CARROT TEST). In college I though this test was the ‘SHYT” especially in my Psych and Business classes. The way it was always presented was if you know the variable for how people think, you can CONTROL the playing field, manipulate profits, peoples’ actions in situations and to some degree productivity under the guise of one’s POTENTIAL of leadership abilities. As I continued on into my adulthood I found that Psychological Manipulation and Control could be seen in all things American. Not that people wake up with ulterior motives to turn others into puppets but from a capitalist-free market society perspective, someone has to create, someone has to make, someone has to market, someone has to believe it, someone has to consume it. It fits the theory of BLIND OBEIDENCE where if you control what people think, you control what people do. Finding ways to get the right people to do these things is a science. My science of CHOICE was a Brain Test that examined what side of the brain people used more. It shared some of the same traits as a Myers-Briggs Test but with one significant difference, this allowed a person to see HOW MUCH a person was LEFT or RIGHT sided. This allowed me to know who could THINK not lead. Thinking outside of the box, who could think best in creative situation, who could function in a pro-active environment and who was rigid and who had flexibility in their technique?

Why was this so important to know, well not all leaders are suited for EVERY SITUATION and even fewer can THINK outside of the box. I found that in companies that are locked into a Myers-Briggs methodology become just as locked and inflexible as the “TYPES” they look for and heir which ultimately kills their ability to grow, evolve and recognized that it can’t move forward as oppose its ability to grow slowly or at all. The brain functions in degrees, balances and imbalances as does businesses so you should have minds that can react based upon THINKERS and not LEADERS. I took my own Brain test and found that I tested in the middle. I have a 45/55 ratio (45% Left Side 55% Right Side) brain activity or what you would call a balanced thinker. This means I use both sides of my brain hemisphere and have equal talents for creativity and logistical processing. Myers-Briggs tests don’t often catch these unique talents and most business structures do not have a need or can figure out how to integrate people with this type of thinking. Those that do, either surround themselves with these types (Bill Gates of Microsoft) or are the leaders of large groups of Thinkers and base companies upon their unique kind of thinking (Anders Dahlvig of IKEA).

Based upon its results, Myers-Briggs is all about the Fuzzy Math when putting together a DREAM TEAM for management or defining worker's Management Styles. I am not knocking Myers-Briggs nor am I saying that the method I used is far superior but you have to remember earlier, I MADE IT MY PRIORITY TO HIER PEOPLE OF COLOR WITH THE ABILITY TO THINK. Under a Myers-Briggs method, there isn't too much out of the BOX thinking but a HELL OF A LOT of Leading by the book. What is important is that THINKING is the enemy of LEADING. Some would argue that it slows the process and yet how many times have we seen how leading without thinking has gotten people into a Cluster-Fuq of a mess (IRAQ). A classic line I heard while watching one of my favorite CAMMPY TV SHOWS, in a scene from Buffy the Vampire Slayer, the troops were debating about going into WAR against the big BAD EVIL on the show and in a challenge of Buffy’s wisdom and authority, one of the people she was leading asked, “The question isn’t if you can lead, the question is CAN YOU FOLLOW?”

To truly answer a question like that, one would have to set aside EGO for leadership and submit to a position to follow which is not necessarily giving up your "ability" or "Right" to THINK. It always has been my nature that when a person is rewarded for leadership, the ability to THINK is one of those traits, without it, you potion a person, a group, a sitionation into stagnation or to an extreme, a slow death. It is part of your ability to think that gets you notice (accept in the military…. NO INDEPENDENT THINKING ALLOWED) and or properity.

In the end we must look at how much we use our Brian and to what degree. Its not that we only use 20% of our Brain it’s that WE only know how 20% of it WORKS.

2 comments:

jjbrock said...

Thanks Shazza for this post. I understand what you are saying about the brain. so, can you lose some of the brain functions if you don't use it? If we only use about half of it what about the other half. I am 50 and I can tell that my brain do not function like it once did could it be the age? So, I am asking my self can I think out side of the box. Good job.

Shazza Nakim said...

Your brain is fresh from the day it was created or born, like all muscles, u have to exercise it and feed it the right stuff and make sure it gets LOTS of oxygen.

The problem is that we do things that do not require the brain to do much, that it becomes exactly what people said it is ... GREY MATTER.