Stop telling people what NOT to do

Yesterday I headed into the Big Smoke for a Neuroscience of Engagement Bootcamp by Café Style Culture Club.

The workshop delved into the neuroscience of engagement. This isn’t anywhere near as geeky as it sounds! In a nut shell, our brains are constantly collecting data and information. We then make decisions and solve problems based on this information we have been collecting and processing.

That’s a good thing yes? Well no… not that good actually.

Our brain is super clever by being quick to solve problems and react to routine events. But what this does is stop us exploring new ideas and learning to do things differently.

We can absorb eight times more information through play, than by trying to learn in traditional forms.


During the workshop we danced (sometimes literally) around a number of subjects and explored quick fire ways to inject play and creativity into our organisations. We focused on how to get management buy in and took away tools to try with our teams.


Here are my headline takeaways:

Stop telling people NOT what to do

People are more likely to do the things you tell them NOT to do. By telling them not to do it, you’ve asked their brain to think about doing that very thing. So always structure your communications in the positive.


Are you a blamer or future framer?

I think this is my favourite take away phrase. Making mistakes is a positive. Celebrating our mistakes helps us to share lesson’s learnt and keep refining and improving. Next time you make a mistake (at home or in the workplace) think about how to frame it in a positive way. What will you do differently in the future?


Are you building or breaking?

Think about what you’re staying. Is it helping to build (or support) the situation, or breaking it further? Think about your relationships you have with your colleagues, friends and family. Are you communications and actions building that relationship?


Be curious and play

Keep asking questions. Bring fun into the workplace. Stay curious. Don’t aplogise for asking for more information.




Stuart Brown – Play is more than just fun


Learn Your Why

Do you know your Why? The purpose, cause, or belief that inspires you to do what you do. Simon Sinek’s online Why Discovery course can help you learn and live your Why.


Turn the Ship Around – A True Story of Building Leaders by Breaking the Rules
By L David Marquet



NB: this is not a sponsored post 🙂


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