A Year of Whole Brain® Thinking at Herrmann_V2-1

A Year of Whole Brain® Thinking at Herrmann

Just 12 months ago, the concept of Whole Brain® Thinking wasn't very significant to me. Reflecting on my first year at Herrmann, I'm amazed by how quickly I could apply Herrmann's concepts and the Whole Brain® common language. Today, it is the lens through which I perceive challenges, communicate ideas, and fuel innovation.

When starting at Herrmann, the concept of Whole Brain® Thinking was fairly new to me. I had researched Herrmann before my interviews, so I had a basic idea of what Whole Brain® Thinking was and had, of course, heard of the Herrmann Brain Dominance Instrument® (HBDI®) long before during my undergrad program. However, I didn't realize the significant power and ease of Whole Brain® Thinking, which revealed itself as a comprehensive approach to problem-solving that acknowledges the intricate interplay of cognitive preferences that mold our thoughts and actions.

The ease with which I've seen Herrmann and our clients employ Whole Brain® Thinking as a common language has been a revelation. Suddenly, a shared model can unite disparate departments and teams. The lines of communication become apparent, and ideas flow with seemingly less effort. I have witnessed this common language becoming the catalyst for better individual, team, and organization results.

The revelation of the four thinking preference quadrants was akin to discovering a new palette of colors. Each quadrant brought its own distinct shade to the canvas of my understanding. Analytical thinkers wielded the brush of precision and data; practical minds utilized pragmatic strokes; relational thinkers added depth through human connections; and experimental minds dared to splash bold strokes onto the canvas of the unknown.

With this newfound Whole Brain® common language, the impact on my thinking and outcomes was profound. Projects that once stumbled in the dark now dance with purpose and precision. The quality of our work became a testament to the power of unified thinking, demonstrating that when minds work in synchrony, the results are nothing short of extraordinary.

A Balancing Act: Nonthreatening Approaches and Conversations

Whole Brain® Thinking provides a safe space for diverse thinking styles to coexist. It was no longer a matter of "clashing colors" but an awareness and acceptance of complementary tones. Analytical minds found resonance with experimental counterparts, and practical thinkers merged seamlessly with their relational peers. This harmonious balance enriched our conversations and approaches, creating a tapestry of thought that propelled us forward.

The Whole Brain Thinking Model with four quadrants. From the top left counterclockwise: Analytical, Practical, Relational, Experimental

The Elegance of 4 Questions: What, How, Who, Why

One of the most profound insights I've gained is the elegance and power of these four questions: What, How, Who, and Why. These questions, simple in their construction, carry the weight of intentionality and purpose. They guide our endeavors, ensuring every decision is deliberate and action aligned with our objectives.

These four questions can move thought processes and provide a more holistic view. Now, intentionally navigating as an individual or team is easy and nonthreatening. By communicating with a common language, I’ve witnessed how teams respond in a nonthreatening way when shifting their thinking. A quick prompt, such as “Let's shift our thinking from Yellow (why) to Green (how),” is relatively effortless and quickly understood. Shifting from one quadrant to another and thinking more holistically becomes commonplace in meetings and provides an immeasurable impact.

This year at Herrmann has been a journey of discovery, a voyage into the depths of cognitive diversity and collective potential. As I look ahead, I do so with a palette of colors in hand, ready to paint a future that celebrates the power of holistic thinking, innovation, and achievement. The canvas is boundless, and the colors are infinite. Let the masterpiece unfold.

The four-color, four-quadrant graphic, HBDI® and Whole Brain® are trademarks of Herrmann Global, LLC.

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