Cultivating our brainpower to enhance our leadership skills will be the next big thing in the self-help development sphere and neuroscience leadership coach Michelle Loch is on the forefront, helping businesses and organisations create better work environments.
“I had found that using neuroscience as a foundation for leadership development just explained so much for people, it puts the hard science behind what we used to call soft skills, emotional intelligence, getting along with each other and how to connect with people,” she said.
After studying under David Rock, founder of the Neuroleadership Institute in New York, Michelle said that she caught the bug and started doing further studies around neuroscience, “I guess I was in the right place at the right time.”
Michelle now delivers a range of programs that aim to enhance employee engagement and create more useful and beneficial communication skills and conversations.
“Most people think they are pretty good listeners and communicators but interestingly it’s the most common aha moment that people have when they do my program, they end up saying they didn’t realise they were such bad listeners.”
“We tend to be listening for all the wrong reasons, and we need to understand that the way we can best help others is to listen in a different way,” she said.
Good quality conversation is key and according to Michelle “there is value in investing and developing that as a skill, to really listen and to support the creation of insight. Unless we have insight, we don’t really change behaviour, insight only comes when we stop, we think and we reflect.”
Creating a substance mindset is also important and is Michelle’s real passion, “I think we are living in a shallow world and I feel like we are floating on top of the water.”
“It’s about stopping and thinking, what do you really want, what’s really important in life? We live in a what and a how world, what do I need to do and how do I need to do it. But we often don’t stop to think about the why. As a result, we end up doing a lot of things that are quite unfulfilling, that leave us feeling depleted and wanting more.”
“Another coach told me the best piece of advice, to simply be bold, I’ve never forgotten that and I think that we’ve become far too politically correct. I think that we manipulate, we avoid, we skirt around issues and it’s all such a waste of time,” she said.
Michelle strongly believes that neuroscience can change us as a society, “I’ve been really concerned about who we are becoming, living in this western world and I think we are potentially on quite a destructive path. It’s because we have become very me focused rather than we focused.”
“We are going into protective mode and we don’t really know how to engage anymore, social media and smart phone devices have sort of fed into that,” she said.
Throughout her 11 years working in the neuroscience leadership space Michelle states that her biggest achievement is “being able to conquer some of these skills for myself and applying it to my family. I’m very conscious in providing a substance grounding for my children within this shallow world, so they have the better capacity to cope and that they are able to stop and make really insightful decisions.”
“I guess I’m also proud of my ability and I think it’s my strength to take what is relatively complicated neuroscience and translate it so it’s useful for us. That’s where I put my energy, how do we take all that wonderful work that is being done by neuroscientists and how do we use it to better ourselves and our society,” she said.
Find out more about Michelle here!