At its essence, Recalibrate — the theme of the 2023 NeuroLeadership Summit — means, “What do I need to do next to get me where I want to go?” As John Edwards, Director of Leadership at NLI, noted in his Opening Remarks for Day 2, what got you here likely won’t get you there.
Day 2 built on discussions from Day 1 around the Recalibrate theme, with conversations about the future of artificial intelligence (AI) in the workplace, nurturing high performers, valuing neurodiversity, examining what the future holds for learning, and many other topics.
Here are some highlights from Day 2:
“Making Al Work at Work”
Bob Johansen, Distinguished Fellow at the Institute for the Future, said the question isn’t whether AI will augment how humans think and work, but how. Fellow panelists agreed that the presence of AI will require a greater focus on humans.
“All basic human needs will stay no matter how fast technology changes,” said Dr. Scott Barry Kaufman, cognitive scientist at Columbia University.
As a result, leaders will need to double down on their efforts to support employees. According to Dr. Teodor Grantcharov, Professor of Surgery at Stanford University, the most difficult thing to change is not data or technology, but culture.
“Cultivating an Organization of High Performers”
Can everyone be a high performer?
Becks Port, Chief People Officer at 10X Genomics, said yes, but only if done right. Port identified five key ingredients for creating a dream team: encourage a growth mindset, hire slowly, fire/move quickly, give feedback continuously, and encourage deep collaboration.
These ingredients, Port said, create teams where high performers can keep striving for more, while being surrounded by other high performers who inspire them.
“Inclusion Through the Lens of Neurodiversity”
As leaders begin to embrace all forms of employee diversity, they are reconsidering cognitive disorders like ADHD and autism, and certain movement disorders, as potential sources of strength.
Often, panelists said, neurodiverse employees excel in specific domains. When leaders can identify those strengths, rather than see neurodiversity as a weakness, they can optimally include everyone and raise the team’s performance.
Dr. Batia Wiesenfeld, Professor of Management at NYU Stern School of Business, recommends that leaders empower people to use their voice and define for themselves how they think.
“Recalibrate: The Future of Learning”
AI-enabled learning is poised to be faster and more distributed than ever. In the future, panelists say, learning won’t be a heavy burden that takes place in one physical or digital location.
Instead, it will become a seamless experience of “learners being able to ask a question fully in the flow of work,” said NLI Advisor Deb Bubb. For example, imagine asking AI how to handle a tough feedback conversation. At the same time, the AGES Model™ will continue to tell us how humans learn best, despite changing circumstances.
As the future rushes toward us, it’s up to leaders to notice these changes and ensure their employees can work with AI to learn, perform, and grow.