This chapter overviews how neuroscience can provide a new lens to understand leadership processes in organizations. We describe how neurological scanning can be applied to leadership research, as well as its potential advantages over more traditional techniques, such as surveys. Research to date is summarized pertaining to how neuroscience can inform such conceptualizations as transformational, complex/adaptive, and ethical forms of leadership. Findings indicate that effective versus not-so-effective leaders can be distinguished neurologically, and such assessment can benefit the prediction of important leadership outcomes. We caution that context needs to be taken into account in that not only can neurological variables associated with leaders affect organizational behavior and outcomes, but it is equally important to understand how the context can affect neurological qualities of individuals. Finally, we describe how it may be possible to use neurofeedback techniques to help develop leadership qualities of people in industry and in education programs, such as those in business schools.
In this introductory chapter, we make the case for the need for a book that explores this nascent field that we label as organizational neuroscience. In so doing, we put the field in an historical context and overview some recent reviews and thought pieces that have touched upon various topics in this emerging discipline. Key arguments for our case include the fact that research methods and paradigms in the organizational sciences could benefit from a consideration of neuroscience issues, and technology has advanced to the point where an infusion of neuroscience methods into organizational research is now highly feasible. In addition, practitioners and practice-oriented media are ready for new approaches and techniques that could utilize neuroscience-based knowledge. Indeed, “C-suite” executives have been willing subjects in many of the studies described in this book and have shown a genuine interest in applying brain-based theories to their own success and to the success of the organizations that they lead. As such, a goal of this book is to begin to connect such emerging knowledge with practice in areas like organizational, employee, and leader development. At the same time, all of the chapters go to great lengths to not get ahead of ourselves in terms of ideas for practice that are not firmly grounded in research. We further place the area of organizational neuroscience in the greater context of related fields, including neuroeconomics and neuromarketing, and we stress the interdisciplinary nature of all of these emerging disciplines. Finally, we overview the remaining chapters and describe how we delineate two parts of the book based on general issues and topical applications, respectively.
Virtual teams are typically made up of geographically dispersed experts, supported by computer‐based communication technologies. Though increasingly popular this is still a…
Virtual teams are typically made up of geographically dispersed experts, supported by computer‐based communication technologies. Though increasingly popular this is still a relatively unstudied organizational form. Virtual team membership is typically based solely on needed expertise; the teams rarely have any history of interaction and their performance potential is unknown. Research shows that teams exhibit constructive, passive, and aggressive interaction styles, which have significant effects on the decisions the teams produce as well as the teams’ satisfaction with those decisions. We present managerial tools for the assessment of conventional and virtual team interaction styles. We detail how the tools are used, and we also discuss how the styles manifest in each medium, and their effects. We give suggestions to team managers on how to use the insights the tools provide to manage their virtual teams for optimal performance.
Through a review of historically famous cases and a chronicle of neurotechnology development, this chapter discusses brain structure and brain function as two distinct yet…
Through a review of historically famous cases and a chronicle of neurotechnology development, this chapter discusses brain structure and brain function as two distinct yet interrelated paths to understand the relative contributions of anatomical and physiological mechanisms to the human brain–behavior relationship. From an organizational neuroscience perspective, the chapter describes over a dozen neuroimaging technologies that are classified under four groupings: morphologic, invasive metabolic, noninvasive metabolic, and electromagnetic. We then discuss neuroimaging variables that may be useful in social science investigations, and we underscore electroencephalography as a particularly useful modality for the study of individuals and groups in organizational settings. The chapter concludes by considering emerging science and novel brain technologies for the organizational researcher as we look to the future.
While reiterating the benefits of applications of neuroscience to both research and practice, we also acknowledge in this concluding chapter the potential issues that will continually need to be addressed. Specifically, we overview ontological and epistemological concerns, such as the potential for excessive reductionism. We also address ethical issues that could come into play for both researchers and practitioners. Finally, we conclude with a look forward to the future by suggesting that the “approach,” rather than the “avoidance,” of organizational neuroscience is likely to grow over time. One exciting possibility is how an examination of the human brain in work and organizational settings is likely to be a prime example of the “big data” trends that the future will bring.
This paper aims to describe how organizational culture is manifested in behavioral norms and expectations, focusing on 12 sets of behavioral norms associated with…
This paper aims to describe how organizational culture is manifested in behavioral norms and expectations, focusing on 12 sets of behavioral norms associated with constructive, passive/defensive, and aggressive/defensive cultural styles.
The organizational culture inventory, a normed and validated instrument designed to measure organizational culture in terms of behavioral norms and expectations, was used to test hypotheses regarding the impact of culture. Data are summarized from 60,900 respondents affiliated with various organizations that have used the instrument to assess their cultures. Also presented is a brief overview of a practitioner‐led assessment of four state government departments.
The results of correlational analyses illustrate the positive impact of constructive cultural styles, and the negative impact of dysfunctional defensive styles, on both the individual‐ and organizational‐level performance drivers. The results clearly link the dysfunctional cultural styles to deficits in operating efficiency and effectiveness.
The concept of organizational culture is derived from research in the field of organizational behavior characterized by use of qualitative methods. Yet, one of the most powerful strategies for organizational development is knowledge‐based change, an approach that generally relies on the use of quantitative measures. Although both methods share the potential for producing cumulative bodies of information for assessment and theory testing, quantitative approaches may be more practical for purposes of knowledge‐based approaches for organizational development generally, and assessing cultural prerequisites for organizational learning and knowledge management specifically.