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Episode 94 of 133

[Feature Friday] Lead Instructor Daniel Manning on Thinking Better: The ROI Online Podcast Ep. 94

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The ROI Online Podcast
Duration: 44:44
Do you have a problem in your organization that is consuming your time and thoughts? Maybe what you need are some fresh ideas from a trusting, collaborative team. On this Feature Friday episode of the ROI Online Podcast, Steve talks with Daniel Manning about how you can start thinking better so you
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Do you have a problem in your organization that is consuming your time and thoughts? Maybe what you need are some fresh ideas from a trusting, collaborative team. On this Feature Friday episode of the ROI Online Podcast, Steve talks with Daniel Manning about how you can start thinking better so you can look at problems in a new way—and start to solve them.Dan is the Lead Instructor in #HumanIntelligence and the author of Thinking Better. He and his team use games and exercises that allow your team to discover lessons of collaboration, critical thinking, creativity, and strategy to look at problems differently.There are always going to be problems in your organization, the ability to solve them alongside your team and make something great out of them is what will make your business thrive among the rest.Among other things, Dan and Steve discussed:Dan’s back story in the Air ForceAll about his book Thinking BetterThe Status Quo Illusion definitionHow culture affects our decision makingWhy most people let the world go on instead if taking actionHow to make decisions you can actually live withWhy it’s vital to create a safe, open work space where people can share their opinionWhat shifting the focus of criticism off a person and to an action can do for your teamConnecting people with their intrinsic motivation for better resultsYou can learn more about Dan here:Follow Dan on LinkedInFollow Dan on TwitterSend Dan an EmailLearn more about #HumanIntelligence here:https://www.hi.training/Read the books mentioned in this podcast:The Golden Toilet by Steve BrownThinking Better by Daniel ManningThinking of starting your own podcast? Buzzsprout’s secure and reliable posting allows you to publish podcasts online. Buzzsprout also includes full iTunes support, HTML5 players, show statistics, and WordPress plugins. Get started using this link to receive a $20 Amazon gift card and to help support our show!Support the show (https://cash.app/$stevemfbrown)
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So, Dan, you're talking about intrinsic motivation. Let's let's let's get that really clear. What? What exactly is intrinsic and what's it pinging in an organization? Yeah, so? So the let's over the opposite, right? The opposite of intrinsic motivation is extrinsic motivation, and that is some reward that comes from the outside. So you tell me, if you do this thing and you do it well, I'm gonna give you a bonus, right? I'm gonna give you some extra money. If you go and you are able to develop five new leads, I'll pay for each of those leads. Or if you can. If you work on an assembly line, for instance, and you're producing 20 of these widgets per day, if you can up your productivity to 25 widgets, I'm gonna kick in some extra money, right? Extrinsic rewards of those things that come from the outside. Intrinsic rewards are those things that come from the inside. It's those things that I do simply because I want to do those things because they provide reward themselves. So for most people that are working in a creative industry, the act of creation is intrinsically rewarding to them, right? van Gogh wasn't painting because he was thinking he could make a lot of money, right? He was painting because it was what he did. He just continued to paint. And I find this with entrepreneurs that we work with as well, right? They are intrinsically motivated to have a successful business, not only because it generates money. In fact, the money is sort of secondary to something else. And usually that thing is this drive for mastery because being an entrepreneur is essentially solving a puzzle. It's how do you create from nothing? This business that works and is able to produce money and money is sort of the the outward reflection of the effectiveness of of the of the process right, the outward reflection of the mastery that they demonstrate through entrepreneurship. So what you find is particularly with creative creative teams and people that are trying to increase more creativity lots of times, people will want to give extrinsic rewards to make people more creative, you say Hey, whoever comes up with the best idea you're going to get a get a free lunch. I'm gonna give you a gift card. I'm gonna give you this handsome bonus. But what research finds over and over and over is that extrinsic rewards do not increase creativity. Extrinsic rewards actually undermine creativity because it switches the way that our brains think about the reward. So now, rather than doing the work because it's rewarding our brains say, Well, let's do the minimum amount we have to do to reach this reward were other people who were doing the work just because it was what they do now they feel like it's been cheapened because the guy would do this if I weren't getting paid, and now you're giving me extra money for it. That's just I don't know that doesn't feel right so rewarding people. Extrinsic Lee for creative work simply doesn't doesn't work. It's tapping into that intrinsic motivation and connecting people to the work that they are already intrinsically motivated to do is where you get the benefit of their creativity
training. So, Dan, you're talking about intrinsic motivation. Let's let's let's get that really clear. What? What exactly is intrinsic And what's it pinging in an organization? Yeah, so? So the let's over the opposite, right? The opposite of intrinsic motivation is extrinsic motivation, and that is some reward that comes from the outside. So you tell me, if you do this thing and you do it well, I'm gonna give you a bonus, right? I'm gonna give you some extra money. If you go and you are able to develop five new leads, I'll pay for each of those leads. Or if you can. If you work on an assembly line, for instance, and you're producing 20 of these widgets per day, if you can up your productivity to 25 widgets, I'm gonna kick in some extra money, right? Extrinsic rewards of those things that come from the outside. Intrinsic rewards are those things that come from the inside. It's those things that I do simply because I want to do those things because they provide reward themselves. So for most people that are working in a creative industry, the act of creation is intrinsically rewarding to them. right? Van Gogh wasn't painting because he was thinking he can make a lot of money, right? He was painting because it was what he did. He just continued to paint. And I find this with entrepreneurs that we work with as well, right? They are intrinsically motivated to have a successful business, not only because it generates money. In fact, the money is sort of secondary to something else. And usually that thing is this drive for mastery because being an entrepreneur is essentially solving a puzzle. It's how do you create from nothing? This business that works and is able to produce money and money is sort of the the outward reflection of the effectiveness of of the of the process right, the outward reflection of the mastery that they demonstrate through entrepreneurship. So what you find is particularly with creative creative teams and people that are trying to increase more creativity lots of times, people will want to give extrinsic rewards to make people more creative, you say Hey, whoever comes up with the best idea you're going to get a get a free lunch. I'm gonna give you a gift card. I'm gonna give you this handsome bonus. But what research finds over and over and over is that extrinsic rewards do not increase creativity. Extrinsic rewards actually undermined creativity because it switches the way that our brains think about the reward. So now, rather than doing the work because it's rewarding our brains say, Well, let's do the minimum amount we have to do to reach this reward were other people who were doing the work just because it was what they do now they feel like it's been cheapened because the guy would do this if I weren't getting paid, and now you're giving me extra money for it. That's just I don't know that doesn't feel right so rewarding people. Extrinsic Lee for creative work simply doesn't doesn't work. It's tapping into that intrinsic motivation and connecting people to the work that they are already intrinsically motivated to do is where you get the benefit of their creativity
delusions. Yeah, I talked about how being creative. We have creatives on our team. We're helping businesses get a platform together online to help them grow the value of the business. Well, that takes creative writing, creative strategy, creative creatives, the design of all those or whatever. But the problem or the thing that I really want to encourage, is that to be creative, you need to be willing to put yourself out there and receive criticism of what you're producing or suggesting. And you can't just, like, throw it out there. Then if you get a little push back, go, go shrink. You need to be okay with that. But I think it's something that it takes some time to to lean into. Yeah, you're exactly right. And the and you said it exactly right as well to take criticism of the action, right. If someone produces a an idea that's not good, well, one. That's the way most ideas are. Most ideas suck. Most ideas are not good ideas. It takes some time to get down to that good idea. So the brainstorming literature says that it takes about 25 ideas that people just offer up in a brainstorming session to get one idea. That's a plausible thing that we can do, right? That's a what? Yeah, 4%. 4.4% success rate, right? It's a tiny, um, success rate versus how many ideas you have to come up with. But if Van Gogh had had that level of success, he would have been thrilled. Van Gogh painted stuff like 900 paintings in his lifetime, and he only sold one, and it was to his brother, who was already giving him money. So it's really hard for us to judge which ideas are good and which ideas are bad. But it's that continuous improvement to make them better. It's continuously iterating on those. So when you have someone on your team who produces a creative idea, it's important to ensure that you are criticizing or you're trying to build on the idea and you're not criticizing that person, right? So a good person can come up with a bad idea, and frankly, a bad person can come up with a good idea as well. But separating the idea from that person, uh, insulate the person from that that criticism a little bit and you can let someone know that they're on your team and maybe they have a bad idea today or tomorrow. But you're gonna invite them back the next day. They have to eventually perform. They have to eventually be producing some good ideas to stay on the team. But that's a different decision than you're just offering me up One bad idea today.
so in in that situation in the military. Obviously, if you're if you're in charge of the day to day operations of the airstrikes going on against Isis, there's that collateral damage conversation that's going on. How how do you approach that, Right? So for So for me, it wasn't simply a trolley problem, right? It wasn't some thought experiment that we could conduct. You know, I would have folks who who I worked with who were who were smart, who were very dedicated at the job that they were doing. We had the best intelligence assets available on the planet for the history of time available to us, and they would go and they would look and they would find, for instance, like, Here's an isis target and let's say it's a dump truck full of explosives and they would bring me the evidence that says why they believe that this is an isis target. And oftentimes they were right, right? I would be convinced. Yes, absolutely. That's an Isis dump truck. It was being loaded with explosives from a known Isis location. Um, it's maybe even had an isis flag on it, right? There's no question that it's an Isis dump truck. But now you have a decision to make. Do you do nothing and allow that dump truck to leave. And now Isis can use those explosives to kill people that you'll never see. Or do you decide to strike that dump truck even though it happens to be located maybe in a village or very close to the village? And you know that you may inadvertently kill innocent people that you do see, So you have to get past your those, uh, those illusions that we create for ourselves to make some decision that one you can live with and to advances, the objectives that you're actually going after.
so in in that situation in the military. Obviously, if you're if you're in charge of the day to day operations of the airstrikes going on against Isis, there's that collateral damage conversation that's going on. How how do you approach that, Right? So for So for me, it wasn't simply a trolley problem, right? It wasn't some thought experiment that we could conduct. You know, I would have folks who who I worked with who were who were smart, who were very dedicated at the job that they were doing. We had the best intelligence assets available on the planet for the history of time available to us, and they would go and they would look and they would find, for instance, like, Here's an isis target and let's say it's a dump truck full of explosives and they would bring me the evidence that says why they believe that this is an isis target. And oftentimes they were right, right? I would be convinced. Yes, absolutely. That's an Isis dump truck. It was being loaded with explosives from a known Isis location. Um, it's maybe even had an isis flag on it, right? There's no question that it's an isis dump truck. But now you have a decision to make. Do you do nothing and allow that dump truck to leave. And now Isis can use those explosives to kill people that you'll never see. Or do you decide to strike that dump truck even though it happens to be located maybe in a village or very close to the village? And you know that you may inadvertently kill innocent people that you do see, So you have to get past your those, uh, those illusions that we create for ourselves to make some decision that one you can live with and to advances, the objectives that you're actually go.
you're talking about your book where, like culture penalizes the person that made a decision to change things and really rewards people that even though the company just languished, they stayed and consistent in the status quo as much as possible, we just naturally think that that's better, right? So we we favor errors of omission over errors of commission. So are you familiar with the trolley problem that comes up sometimes in ethics or philosophy? Philosophical discussions? No. Enlighten me, please. Yeah, so? So, essentially, the trolley problem is Imagine that you are. You're walking along one day and you walk up to some tracks and there's a trolley. It's it's brakes have failed. It's a runaway train car that's coming down the tracks. You happen to be standing next to a switch, and if you do nothing, this train car is going to go zooming past you and it's going to go off of off of a cliff. And the five people that are on that train car will surely die or you have a switch that you can flip, and when you flip the switch, that runaway train car will be diverted onto this path that it can take to sort of roll out and slow down safely. But when it does that it's going to hit some pedestrians and it's going to surely kill these pedestrians. And in this case it's going to kill three pedestrians on the path that it runs out to slow down on. So you have a choice. You can either do nothing. And now you allow the train car to go past you and it goes off the cliff and five people die or you flip the switch and it diverts onto a track and three people die on the other track. So, Steve, what do you do? It depends on who's in that trolley. If it's Isis, I do nothing. So So you have these are you have no reason to believe that anyone who has any type of moral turpitude in their background is just five unknown strangers. And the three pedestrians are also unknown to you as well. Yeah, I don't know. I don't know what to do because I don't have enough information to make a good decision, is how I'm feeling. Okay. So the train is almost there. You're about to lose your chance to make a decision. So what are you gonna do? I'm gonna stay in the status quo, I guess, And be a loser. I I don't know. So it's not necessarily a loser, right? It's the way that our brains are wired and your answer is, in fact, the answer. That is what most people give right. Most people decide that they're not going to flip the switch. When I, you know, I have to test out all of my whole of my presentations of my questions of my my family. So my wife, when I gave her this problem, I said, So you're going to essentially kill those five people? I'm not killing him. Fate is killing them, right? I don't know anything about why they got on that train. I just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. So she's going to allow them to continue on. And that is a good example of the way that we favor errors of omission over errors of commission, right? We would rather do nothing and just let the world kind of continue on. Then take some action and then later have someone say he should have left. Well, enough alone. He shouldn't have changed those tracks. He should have just stuck with what was there before. But if you look at it from any other perspective, like surely three people, dying is is not as bad as five people dying. And in fact, you could raise the numbers, and eventually people will get to someplace where they say, All right, I'm going to act. And in some studies where psychologists looked at like medical trials, for instance, the number that they came to was 9 to 1 that most people needed to save nine lives by an act of coalition to rather than just allowing things to happen and have one person die. So it's something that's deeply wired in us, and it drives our decision making in lots of strange ways.
Yeah, so out of this experience, this book thinking better critical thinking and creativity through trusting collaboration started to take form in your mind and that that's exactly right And what's interesting to me as you talk about how status quo is something that we cling to with its We look like a cat hanging on a curtain or something, trying to maintain the status quo. But in the story, what's interesting is that how the status quo when it starts to crumble and when we start to realize that it's not going to last, we have to make decisions, and we drag our feet into embracing that change. And that's what your books about. Yeah, that's exactly right. We have a chapter, and they're talking about the status quo illusion and for for your listeners, folks that are involved in sales and marketing essentially, sales and marketing is trying to get people to overcome their status quo. Illusions. You're trying to get a customer to go from their status quo of not being a customer to a new status quo where they are a customer. So it's something that impacts virtually all of your listeners. But it also impacts all of us every day, just the way that we conduct our lives and go about making decisions. So defined status quo. Illusion. Yeah, so? So the status quo Illusion says that what we have always done is better than what could be. So it's the It's the illusion that our brains create. That tells us, Let's just keep doing things the way we've always done them like Let's leave good enough alone. If it ain't broke, don't fix it. Let's just go in and stick with what's what's going on now. And even if it's not doing the best, and even if we know it could be a little bit better, it's better the devil, you know, than whatever that thing is down the road. It's all these sort of sayings that play over and over in our mind that leads us to just keep sitting in the same thing, even when it's falling apart.
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