Why I use Neuroscience when communicating with my audience

Last week I had the opportunity to attend @Lansons talk on “The Neuroscience of Organisational Change” presented by @drhelenaboschi. Those of you who know me would know how fascinated I am with neuroscience and the human behaviour. I tend to use them when communicating and building relationships with my audience. I thoroughly enjoyed the talk and here are glimpse of my takeaways from the night and from Dr.Boschi’s book “Why we do what we do”. I am keen to hear your views on the below.

1.    Our brains respond quicker to nouns hence advertiser use nouns in their campaigns for example “Olay. Your best beautiful” or “where there is happy there has to be Heinz

2.    Research proves that the more neurotic the person is the greater they use exclamation, quotation marks, commas and adverbs in their emails.

3.    We see words as signs and shapes. Our brains helps us read the word as a whole but become familiar with its shape. This is why for example road signs use upper and lower case together because we can see the pattern of the word, register it and then respond quickly.

4.    Our brains reacts more intensely to negative than positive stimuli hence we are more likely to reach for bad news than good news. We do so to ensure our survival.

5.    We tend to look for and choose information that confirms or reinforces our existing beliefs. When we want or expect something to be true, we often make it true.

6.    Learned helplessness is a psychological trap by which people feel that they have no control over their situation and so behave in a helpless manner, this can prevent them from seeing the opportunities coming from the change.

7.    When helping employees or leaders to improve our conversation as Internal Communication professionals need to carefully timed so that the person can direct their attention on future endeavour. For example, the conversation should be “Philip, I know you are preparing for the meeting on Tuesday. I have a few suggestions that may help you set your points clearly. Shall we go through them together on Monday?”

8.    There are words and phrases that we all find annoying and prompts us to switch off: our brains does not appreciate the simple made complex. These phrases include “Right Culture” “Value-Driven organisation” “through the lens of humanity”.

9.    The words “Together”, “You”, “Your” when combined with the word “Because” are very powerful as our brain needs a reason, and a feeling of belonging which will make us act in a positive manner.

10. Despite the fact that we love to multitask, it is clear that we are much worse at filtering irrelevant information and cannot even switch between tasks. We love to do so because of the dopamine released when we do so hence the feeling of happiness that we have achieved something.

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Gihan Hyde
Gihan Hyde is an award winning corporate communication expert with a deep passion for internal communication. Her roles spanned different organisations including HSBC, Barclays, M&S, and Department for International Trade, and the Riyadh Metro Project.
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