“Our brains are wired to be inspired,” said Dr. Sandra Bond Chapman, founder and chief director of the Center for BrainHeath and Dee Wyly Distinguished University Chair at The University of Texas at Dallas. “One of the key differences in our studies from other interventional research aimed at improving cognitive abilities is that we did not focus on specific cognitive functions such as speed of processing, memory, or learning isolated new skills. Instead, the gist reasoning training program encouraged use of a common set of multi-dimensional thinking strategies to synthesize information.” Source: Science Daily’s, Strategic thinking strengthens intellectual capacity.
Jane Dysart has known this for a long time. Now there’s research to prove it: our brains are wired to be inspired. Every conference program and workshop she puts together is about inspiring people. The research cited above not only confirms her conviction about inspiring thinking, it confirms that thinking strategically – “synthesizing information using multi-dimensional thinking” is not only imperative for librarians, information managers and knowledge professionals organizationally, but cognitively too. A bonus.
Strategic thinking, as Jeff Weiner, LinkedIN CEO says, takes time — time we need to aggressively schedule and intentionally pursue. He has talked for years about using “buffers” throughout this day to reflect and think big.
“… you (will) require more time than ever before to just think: Think about what the company will look like in three to five years; think about the best way to improve an already popular product or address an unmet customer need; think about how you can widen a competitive advantage or close a competitive gap, etc.” He then goes on to deconstruct the elements of such horizon-seeking. To do it well, Weiner says, you require:
- Uninterrupted focus
- Thoroughly developing and questioning assumptions
- Synthesizing all of the data, information, and knowledge that’s incessantly coming your way
- Connecting dots
- Bouncing ideas off of trusted colleagues
- Iterating through multiple scenarios
We can all agree, I hope, that Weiner is busy. You’re busy too. And if Weiner can do this – so can you.