My Personal Leadership Journey With The i4 Neuroleader Model

4 min read
5 November 2019
My Personal Leadership Journey With The i4 Neuroleader Model

Learning about the i4 Neuroleader Model is a personal journey of exploration, especially if you are looking for a different leadership tool which features neuroscience at its helm. The i4 Neuroleader Model shows there is more to leadership than the transactional models of the past, and the impacts can resonate across a person’s professional and personal life.

I have been on three life-changing and significant journeys spanning over 20 years and the i4 Neuroleader Certification was an amalgamation of these unique discoveries. 

Journey One: 20 years of leadership training in my corporate role spanning various roles and challenges over that time.

Journey Two: Seeking to learn more about Neuroscience and the application to Leadership, which has been happening for me for around 7 years. 

Journey Three: Discovering what gut health is and how the outcome of gut health, good or bad, has a direct impact on your mood, emotions and cognitive function. 

I knew the moment I came across the About My Brain team I had found something incredibly special as finally, someone was taking all three of my separate adventures and pulling the links together. 

I had a good grounding in the basics of all areas mentioned above, so the content of the course was relevant and engaging for me. The most powerful insights of the 3-day course came when we delved deeper into the different areas of the brain and broke down what good function looks like and what poor function looks like.

There was a pivotal moment for me completing the Brain Quiz, when it was obvious to me, based on my scoring, that I had some potential impacts on both the deep limbic region and hippocampal regions of the brain. 

My results reflected states I often feel, such as quick to react in certain situations and poor memory. I knew the 3-day course would be a personal journey and it did not disappoint. I will use the newfound information to share with others when talking about some of their brain functions and what they are experiencing. 

I have noticed since the course I am identifying people more frequently who are operating from a trauma state, and this is very much in my awareness. Since completing the course, I am having more courageous conversations about bringing this to people's awareness and talking to them about the options they have to address their trauma and discuss the impact it has on them and others around them. 

The i4 Neuroleader Model resonates so deeply with me. I have always felt there is more to leadership and how we approach our people than the transactional methods I have seen for the last 2 decades. The model covers performance, which is at the core of many leadership models.

However, the i4 Neuroleader Model refers to more than just performance and talks about the whole person by incorporating elements of how we achieve balance in our lives, and how we incorporate fun and playfulness into our day to trigger the creative centres of our brain. 

Technology has completely disrupted our working and family lives by creating the ability to be “always-on”. The addictive nature of the technology also means people are getting hooked into their devices and forgetting how to switch off and how to connect with others. This inability to switch off kills our capacity to create insights, as insights are generated by a quiet, wandering mind. 

Connections with others are also important for our wellbeing, and when we are distracted, we fail to realise we are denying our needs or the needs of others. These are very important themes, and my intention is to use these personally to support myself and my own family unit while continuing to teach these concepts. 

A differentiator of the i4 Neuroleader Model is that it invites you not only to ask your manager and peers to respond to the survey like most traditional 360-degree feedback mechanisms, it also encourages you to invite family to respond. This provides a unique perspective, and when the report data is presented you can see a representation of how the different groups responded. If any large variances present themselves, this opens up the opportunity to explore if you are operating differently in a work environment than your personal environment. This draws to the surface any potential blind spots where you can potentially make changes. 

The Workbook which goes alongside the i4 Neuroleader Model is comprehensive and provides suggestions for each competency and pillar if there is an area that needs work. This is an incredibly powerful tool, and the suggestions provided a range of different options which means you can tailor a plan to individual needs. There is fluidity and adaptability here that other traditional Leadership models lack. 

“One of the most powerful and life-changing habits I have learnt from the About My Brain teachings is the importance of play.”

Kathryn Van Der Steege

I lost many precious moments with my children when they were younger because I was so serious and always looking at the task that needed to be done around the house. About my Brain invited me to bring play back into my life. They allowed me to explore this as an adult and explained the benefits for my own brain.

I now invite and welcome play in everyday situations, and this has brought a lovely new dynamic to my family life. I have also had the courage to use this technique in the workplace, and it was incredibly rewarding when a grown man provided feedback “that was just what he needed”. 

During the course, we talked about the concept of three levels:

  1. Level 1 (Tantrums): For so many years I lived at this level, but the application of Neuroscience has helped me move beyond this. I now observe many people who operate at Level 1 on a day to day basis. 
  2. Level 2 (The Arts): Level 2 occurs when you tap into the arts. This is the journey I have been on lately. 
  3. Level 3 (Creative Solutions): It is now time for me to operate in Level 3, and to bring people up to this level so they can transform themselves, and then transform their teams and organisations. 

The i4 Neuroleader Certification is truly life-changing. On a personal aspect and for those of us who continue to champion for more brain-friendly organisations, I cannot wait to continue this journey, as I will now be fully certified and can start to use my learnings with my coaching clients.

i4 Neurolader Certification

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