leading brains Blog

Learn about the brain, personality, and culture, in business, education, and everyday life.

The Best Team Wins

The Rugby World Cup has come and gone. Although I am fully aware not everyone is a sports fan or rugby fan there are many interesting parallels to the business world and most obviously to team performance. Aside from that, as a sports and rugby fan it was a fantastic...

Cultural Gold Mine

As both a rugby fan and a Scotland supporter, it was with great excitement and enormous trepidation that I took my trip to Japan in September. Great excitement to be attending the rugby world cup and visiting what I’d heard was a truly amazing country – enormous...

Chill: Getting the most out of your child’s brain

So, who wouldn’t want to get the most out of their child’s brain – who wouldn’t want to have little child prodigy? In fact, this desire is so strong it’s considered a multi-million-dollar industry in the US. The only problem is that most of these ideas are junk....

Relax and have fun: Getting the most out of your brain at school

So it’s back to school time and some of you students may be excited to be back amongst your friends, some of you may be facing the prospect of critical exams, some of you may be dreading it, and some may find the whole school thing pretty tedious (I won’t say where I...

Back to School – by choice this time.

When I finished university for the first time, I remember quite clearly saying “well, I am never doing that again”. In hindsight I should perhaps have waited until I’d left the stage at my graduation ceremony. The Dean, handing me my scroll, did not look as amused as...

The Induction Production; Why the first days of school are so important – for teachers!

Here’s an interesting number; 1,800. It’s the number of people who can fit on ten, fully loaded, Airbus A320s. Alternatively, it’s the number of people who can fit into two and a half Olympic sized swimming pools. Also, 1,800 is the number of new teachers that one of...

Actually: Late to Bed and Late to Rise Makes You Healthy, Wealthy, and Wise

Well that would be nice, and the research does point to those late to bed and late to rise types being more intelligent and richer - but to be honest the measured differences are tiny so if you are trying to get rich there may be better ways to do it. Besides that,...

Culture Club – How are things really done around here?

What is corporate culture? A great question and one that has multiple, sometimes conflicting, answers. Despite most people being somewhat vague on how to actually define corporate culture, it’s still one of the top topics asked about at interviews (by both candidates...

Death to personality types – kind of!

So, let’s face it, when we look at personality measurement, a casual conversation usually leads to a few innocent individuals piping up that they’ve done the MBTI and are YMCA or PTSD – or something along those lines. Yes, the MBTI is well-known has been around since...

Episode 3, Final Episode – Narcos: The Cartel Employee Value Proposition

The day has come. Finally, after a lengthy tour through both the entertainment world and some of the more obscure connections my HR-addled brain insists on making, we are at the last installment of this mini-series (earlier episodes available here).  Before...

HR & Leadership Blogs

Cultural Gold Mine

As both a rugby fan and a Scotland supporter, it was with great excitement and enormous trepidation that I took my trip to Japan in September. Great excitement to be attending the rugby world cup and visiting what I’d heard was a truly amazing country – enormous...

Back to School – by choice this time.

When I finished university for the first time, I remember quite clearly saying “well, I am never doing that again”. In hindsight I should perhaps have waited until I’d left the stage at my graduation ceremony. The Dean, handing me my scroll, did not look as amused as...

Personality blogs

Culture Club – How are things really done around here?

What is corporate culture? A great question and one that has multiple, sometimes conflicting, answers. Despite most people being somewhat vague on how to actually define corporate culture, it’s still one of the top topics asked about at interviews (by both candidates...

Death to personality types – kind of!

So, let’s face it, when we look at personality measurement, a casual conversation usually leads to a few innocent individuals piping up that they’ve done the MBTI and are YMCA or PTSD – or something along those lines. Yes, the MBTI is well-known has been around since...

Education blogs

Relax and have fun: Getting the most out of your brain at school

So it’s back to school time and some of you students may be excited to be back amongst your friends, some of you may be facing the prospect of critical exams, some of you may be dreading it, and some may find the whole school thing pretty tedious (I won’t say where I...

Back to School – by choice this time.

When I finished university for the first time, I remember quite clearly saying “well, I am never doing that again”. In hindsight I should perhaps have waited until I’d left the stage at my graduation ceremony. The Dean, handing me my scroll, did not look as amused as...

All posts

The Best Team Wins

The Rugby World Cup has come and gone. Although I am fully aware not everyone is a sports fan or rugby fan there are many interesting parallels to the business world and most obviously to team performance. Aside from that, as a sports and rugby fan it was a fantastic...

Cultural Gold Mine

As both a rugby fan and a Scotland supporter, it was with great excitement and enormous trepidation that I took my trip to Japan in September. Great excitement to be attending the rugby world cup and visiting what I’d heard was a truly amazing country – enormous...

Chill: Getting the most out of your child’s brain

So, who wouldn’t want to get the most out of their child’s brain – who wouldn’t want to have little child prodigy? In fact, this desire is so strong it’s considered a multi-million-dollar industry in the US. The only problem is that most of these ideas are junk....

Relax and have fun: Getting the most out of your brain at school

So it’s back to school time and some of you students may be excited to be back amongst your friends, some of you may be facing the prospect of critical exams, some of you may be dreading it, and some may find the whole school thing pretty tedious (I won’t say where I...

Back to School – by choice this time.

When I finished university for the first time, I remember quite clearly saying “well, I am never doing that again”. In hindsight I should perhaps have waited until I’d left the stage at my graduation ceremony. The Dean, handing me my scroll, did not look as amused as...

Culture Club – How are things really done around here?

What is corporate culture? A great question and one that has multiple, sometimes conflicting, answers. Despite most people being somewhat vague on how to actually define corporate culture, it’s still one of the top topics asked about at interviews (by both candidates...

Death to personality types – kind of!

So, let’s face it, when we look at personality measurement, a casual conversation usually leads to a few innocent individuals piping up that they’ve done the MBTI and are YMCA or PTSD – or something along those lines. Yes, the MBTI is well-known has been around since...

Investors and Educationalists – a Natural Mismatch?

Private education has seen an upturn in investment in recent years and respective growth in school groups and investors specialising in this field. We are fortunate to have collected some refined data into personalities of both investors and educators and this gives...

Episode 2 – Mayday!

This article is the second part of my humble attempt to describe core elements of the HR value chain using examples provided by the modern oracle that is our television. If you’re not sure why on earth I would think something like this is a good idea or indeed you...

Episode 1 – The Innocent Man

I have definitely found, as I’ve got older, that one of my new favourite pass times is yelling at my TV. For me, nothing provides better opportunity for this than reality or documentary ‘True Crime’ programs. These normally detail a catalogue of bad decisions,...

Mini HR Series

Brace yourself for an unpopular opinion. As a serial HR Director, I had always maintained that strategic HR, its alignment with organisational strategy and impact on organisational behaviour wasn’t really that complicated at all. Not many people agreed with me....

The Brains of Successful CEOs

What the science does and doesn’t say We are all drawn to the stories of successful people and their little secrets to success. We also are drawn to simple stories of their success – the one single thing that makes an individual successful. It is no different to...

A Fairytale of Two Cities

Or why using good psychometrics (like Leading Brains Assessments) makes good business sense So, you’ve probably heard the expression "culture eats strategy for breakfast!” Most likely you’ve heard it delivered with a smug expression by someone in the office who has...

If you don’t know me by now…

So, February – widely considered to be the gloomiest month of the year – has now passed us by in a haze of division, arguments, disagreement and misunderstandings. The biggest harbinger of this February doom? Brexit? American politics? No. Valentines day. Across the...

The Truth about Brain Development

Words: 2 245 words in main article without references and exercises: Reading Time: about 7 minutes  Brain development from newborn to adult is surrounded by many assumptions, myths, and false models. This is also a singularly fascinating area – space won’t allow...

New Year, New…Who?

OK, show of hands of those who have emerged, blinking and bleary eyed, from the festive season, clutching determinedly to a mental list of newly forbidden vices? Perhaps it’s the dreaded smoking, or something to do with food and drink? Not cutting your toe nails in...

Part 1: Left Brain – Right Brain: Correcting the Myth

Words: 1319 words in main article without references and exercises: Reading Time: about 4 ½ minutes  Part 1: Left brain vs right brain: We do have two hemispheres, but the popular description is misleading and sometimes simply wrong.Part 2: We use 10% of our...

Do You Have Startup Personality?

Reading time: about 4 minutes Take the HBF for Startup Team for only $27 in place of $51 in February. Most research into startup personalities has focused on limited factors such as risk taking – an obvious one. This does not really give much insight apart from into...

Part 3: The Brain and the Myth of Learning Styles

Part 1: Left brain vs right brain: We do have two hemispheres, but the popular description is misleading and sometimes simply wrong. Part 2: We use 10% of our brain: We always use 100% of the brain! Part 3: Learning styles: What sounds intuitively true is...

Part 2: The 10% of the Brain Myth and Teaching to 100% of the Brain

Part 1: Left brain vs right brain: We do have two hemispheres, but the popular description is misleading and sometimes simply wrong. Part 2: We use 10% of our brain: We always use 100% of the brain! Part 3: Learning styles: What sounds intuitively true is...

Intro: Busting Brain Myths for Teachers

When it comes to the classroom nothing could be more useful than knowing about the brain and how it connects, learns and rewires. This knowledge can help make teachers even more effective (aside from the simple fascination with the topic). But there is a simple...

The Truth About How to Grow Your Brain (and How to Really Do It)!

A recent report came out stating that learning a language grows the brain [1]. And indeed this does seem to be true. The report noted that in this particular study those that learned a language compared to a control group "grew" various parts of the brain....

The Magic Sauce in Team Motivation?

Let's face it we are all looking for the magic sauce when it comes to motivation and every few years or so a new magic sauce becomes fashionable - but then somehow seems to fade away for another magic sauce - and some come back with a different name every few years....