Neuroscience Insights

April 22nd, 2024
background with three people and a red arrow indicating

As a negotiation and mediation specialist, I was struck by the article “How Much Does Personality in Negotiation Matter?” offered by the Harvard Program on Negotiation. Working with a challenging counterpart and a client who is agreeable to working things out, this article hit a nerve. I shared this article with my client, and we took a professional yet less agreeable approach to the negotiation. Read on about personalities in a negotiation and how this negotiation turned out. 

July 31st, 2023

Bias is something everyone has based on their experiences and their attitudes associated with those experiences. As a mediation and negotiation specialist focusing on conflict resolution, mediation, and negotiation and as a lifelong learner in this field I want to share with you some insights based on recent research. This article focuses on overall commentary on bias and unconscious bias, steps to address unconscious bias organizationally, addressing unconscious bias and prejudice in mediations and negotiations, and bias reduction strategies you can take to help you in these types of situations in the future.

June 19th, 2023
A group of rocks balanced on one another on a rocky beach

Working in the areas of mediation and conflict resolution, mediation and negotiation, and related areas I see the advantages of focusing on health, balance, and routines for success. This article provides you with several links to other sources to help with ideas related to health and balance in your work and life.  Often parties involved with the issues identified above are stressed and may have a difficult time seeing closure. As a mediator I do not assume from my experiences to know their experiences. Knowing this I realize that we all have varying degrees of health and balance in our lives. Some of the elements below have helped me personally. I simply wanted to share these with you to see if they may help you.  Let’s begin with the area of health.

August 29th, 2022
24 emojis depicting various emotions

Do you want to be happier, calmer, and more energized? The answer to this question has a direct impact on how you collaborate, address conflict, and disputes, healing, empathy, listening, and leadership. In an article by the Greater Good Science Center at the University of California at Berkeley entitled How Your Life is Shaped by the Emotions You Want to Feel the author, the Managing Editor, Kira M. Newman, shares a series of studies with some enlightening insights. Keys points from that article are summarized here with some personal observations.

August 22nd, 2022
Stressed woman with hand to face being overwhelmed

Collaboration with others often leads to better outcomes with others supplying ideas, energy, and effort. However, your desire to be a team player, to help others, and to be there for others can lead to too much collaboration and burn out. It is ok to say “no.”  You can do this diplomatically. It is necessary to say “no” sometimes. Become aware of your triggers, apply diplomatic commentary to say “no,” and keep balance in your life. That is the focus of this commentary.

August 8th, 2022
Three signs pointing in opposite directions secure-unsafe, valued-useless, included-outcast

One of the reasons that you may be in conflict with others leading to disputes may have to do with your view of self. In his new book, The Extraordinary Gift of Being Ordinary, Dr. Ronald Siegel of the Harvard Medical School, shares that everyone has doubts about themselves and so does he. You have continual self-evaluative thoughts. This is normal. However, rather than proving yourself he offers ideas and tips to address “not feeling good enough” and how you can build a better self. This ties into the Yale University course on happiness too. These ideas are introduced in this article.

July 25th, 2022
Four people in a negotiation

As a promoter of collaboration, a mediator, a conflict resolution specialist, and a person that teaches ethics and negotiations, I did not initially appreciate the title  of The Dark Side of Collaboration offered by Scientific America. However, the subtitle of  “People working together often scheme to put profits ahead of telling the truth. New research points out ways to stop this behavior” gave me hope. I found this article extremely helpful and enlightening. This commentary that follows shares some of the highlights of that article and offers some additional observations.

June 6th, 2022
Two red open hands. One facing up and the other facing down. They are nearly touching each other

Trust is fundamental to business success, but too much trust may actually undermine collaboration based on an article in the  Harvard Business Review by Per Hugander entitled “When Trust Takes Away from Effective Collaboration.”   This can lead to conflict, disputes, frustration, lost productivity, poorer relationships, and more. For example, an employee may withhold information or share incorrect information when bad news has to be given to avoid conflict. To promote collaboration with your leadership there needs to be a balance between trust and collaboration. The commentary that follows summarizes key points from that article and offers insights based on this author’s experiences to help you in application.

May 1st, 2022
A series of white doors with one gold door

You may believe that you cannot control your anger. You may believe that conflict and disputes are fixed in our brains. However, our brains are unique in that they are the only organ that has the ability to change and adapt. This is called neuroplasticity. Some interesting research has found how our brains can adapt even when up to half of the brain is missing. Now think about this from the perspective on how your brain can adapt and change when addressing conflict or a dispute.

April 24th, 2022
A fist punching through a glass hole

When involved in a negotiation, mediation, a conflict, or a dispute a natural response is to become defensive, angry, and/or frustrated when things do not go well. A question arises as to how you can remain focused on the problem, remain calm, confident, and competent without letting anger take over. When you are angry you are not thinking as clearly, you may make poor decisions, and the ramifications may be extremely consequential. Knowing this, the commentary in this article addresses how to prevent anger from taking over, and how to overcome anger should it surface in a negotiation or a mediation.

February 22nd, 2022
Two parties with arms crossed facing towards camera

The Collaboration Effect© is all about connecting relationships, listening actively, and educating judiciously to build relationships and negotiate closure. Previous commentary on connecting relationships and listening actively lead us to today’s commentary on educating judiciously. That is the focus of this commentary. How can you educate someone else the way they want to be educated when conflict is involved?

February 7th, 2022
Young lady in front of laptop biting her pencil

In many professions tight deadlines, being an expert witness, litigation, and other stressors impact your every day. The questions are what does this do to with your health? How does this impact your aging? What about conflicts at work? After some research in these areas here are some great ideas to help you with these issues and a personal insight related to business valuers.