- Paul Herr
- Madison, WI
- United States
What Does the Core of Human Nature Look Like?
David Brooks gives an eloquent description of a society that is emotionally out-of-whack. Here is a disturbing fact that supports David's core thesis: half of us will suffer from a mental illness during our lifetimes. Yikes!
The solution, he suggests, is a more nuanced and accurate understanding of our deep emotional nature. David's suggestion is "spot on" because it leads to a more promising and rewarding future where everybody benefits!
David points out that a new synthesis is congealing around the research of neuro scientists like Antonio Damasio. If you would like to explore this emerging consensus, here are some resources to check out:
1) Any of Antonio Damasio's books ("Descartes Error" is my favorite)
2) Daniel Pink's book, "Drive: The Surprising Truth about What Motivates us."
3) Paul Lawrence and Nitin Nohria's book, "Driven: How Human Nature Affects Our Choices" (Nohria, by the way, is the dean of the Harvard Business School),
4) and my book, "Primal Management: Unraveling the Secrets of Human Nature to Drive High Performance."
Drive, Driven and Primal Management postulate that 4 basic human "drives" or "needs" motivate much of human behavior. One application of this evolving consensus is in the workplace. If leaders press these four motivational hot-buttons (satisfy the four core needs of their employees) employees will perform better because they experience a bigger emotional (intrinsic) paycheck.
Before I forget, Gary Hamel's book, The Future of Management, is a terrific resource as well. Hamel, as you may know, is one of the world's top management theorists and he believes that traditional, hierarchical, command and control management has to go because it coerces grudging compliance instead of motivating passionate performance. I submitted an entry to Hamel's management-innovation contest that caries David's theme into the field of management: http://www.managementexchange.com/node/14617