HBDI Assessments

Motivating your employees to learn is easier when you understand how their brains work.

“The medium is the message,” Marshall McLuhan famously said—and that appears to be especially true in training. If you and your company’s executives are not showing through your own work processes and behavior what you expect from employees, your message likely will go unheeded. Even the mood of the trainer and managers can make a huge difference. “Thanks to the discovery of mirror neurons, we have found that individuals understand each other perfectly and tend to ‘set in motion’ in their own brain the areas related to actions and emotions they witness in others,” says Matteo Rizzato, co-author of “I Am Your Mirror: Mirror Neurons and Empathy.”

Rizzato says that before trainers and managers present to learners, they should assess their own state of mind. “The first thing I do when I walk into a classroom is to make sure my state of mind is clear and consistent: A minimum concern on my side would be detected and would ruin learning.”

Indeed, sometimes the greater training lessons—whether they be new manager training, corporate compliance, or learning the details of a new product—can be derailed by negative emotion in the classroom or work group. Training often needs to address underlying, distracting issues before learning goals can be reached.

“A minor grudge between two people is often enough to generate a disagreement between them about the slightest possible matter,” says Rizzato. “This can create conflict and a great productivity loss, as well as destroy company harmony, if the whole matter is not governed by specific training focusing on mood management.”

Most of us heard when we were in college that cramming doesn’t result in long-term learning, and that appears to be true, according to Alice Kim, Ph.D., of The Rotman Research Institute. Dr. Kim says research shows short learning modules over a long period such as six months or a year with practice retrieving the information is best. For example, rather than have new product training take place just six weeks prior to a product launch, it’s much better to have it take place three months before or longer with tests each week in which learners are forced to retrieve the information they have committed to memory. Adhering to the two key principles of spacing learning out and practicing retrieval is far more important than worrying about catering to learning style. “It’s a misconception that trying to match knowledge delivery to someone’s personal learning style or perceptual preference translates to better learning,” Dr. Kim says. “There is no scientific evidence to support it. On the other hand, there’s a lot of evidence to support other proven strategies that training providers should be paying closer attention to, such as spacing out content and practicing retrieval.”

Formal learning structures with specialized modules or sessions sometimes are needed, but in many cases, learning by observing and doing and then informally getting evaluated is best, says corporate trainer Michael Blight, senior consultant, Walker Sands Communications. “If you are a smaller firm, less formal means of evaluation are fine,” he says. “For example, PR firms usually require their employees to interact with clients. Staff members typically sit in on calls with the client as they observe managers or other highertiered employees interact with the client.”

Blight also notes the importance of putting the learning into context so employees understand the company’s ultimate goal. “Why is it that they are working for the company in the first place? Why is it important that they overcome these challenges? Employees need to get in the mindset of seeking out new challenges to continue to grow—personally and professionally.”

Rather than rolling training out to learners, you can get them more engaged in the learning, and have the learning be more effective, by having them help create it, says Tim Riesterer, chief strategy and marketing officer at Corporate Visions. “If you can get participants to feel like they are co-creating their experience, they will more highly value the training.”

Riesterer notes an experiment by Dan Ariely, a behavioral economist from Duke University, and his colleagues that shows the act of building furniture resulted in the buyer of the furniture valuing the furniture more. “The same could be true if you can integrate this co-creation concept into your training offerings,” Riesterer believes.

Taking Riesterer’s idea, you could, for instance, have learners divide up the material, do their own research, and then take turns presenting to their classmates.

Riesterer’s colleague, Lisa Cummings, vice president of Products for Corporate Visions, says the language a trainer uses also should put the spotlight on the learners themselves. “The default is to say or write ‘we’ because it feels welcoming. It feels like collaboration and teamwork. You might say, ‘What we’re going to learn today is…’ or ‘Next, we’ll click here.’ By shifting to ‘you’ phrasing, you’re making your participant the hero of your story,” Cummings points out. “You’re helping them try on what you’re saying. By shifting to, ‘What you’ll learn today is…’ or ‘Next, you’ll click here,’ you’re putting them at the center of the story.”

Similarly, Josh Davis, Ph.D., director of Research and lead professor at The NeuroLeadership Institute, says it is important for trainers to ask learners to apply the lessons to their own past experiences. “We all know from experience how good an insight can feel. It has been shown that one reason insights are so memorable is because of the increased emotional brain activity,” says Dr. Davis. “For example, after 15 minutes of sharing content, a trainer can pause, and give learners a question to write or talk about regarding the relevance they see.”


  • Mirror your lessons, demonstrating yourself (or having your managers demonstrate) the behavior you would like your employees to adopt.
  • Confront psychological distractions such as discord between two co-workers that can inhibit learning.
  • Space out learning and practice retrieval of information. A few months of learning presented in small bites, as opposed to a few weeks of crammed learning, is best, with small quizzes interspersed.
  • Informal learning often works well. Have learners sit with or shadow more experienced employees and then have the experienced employee observe how the learner implements the new knowledge on the job.
  • Give employees a stake in the training by asking them to help create it— maybe through offering key questions for the training to address.
  • Explain to learners the big picture, or corporate goal, the learning is tied to, so they become more engaged and better retain the information.
  • Break up lectures or content by asking learners to reflect back on their own past experiences to apply the new information they are learning.


By Ann Herrmann-Nehdi, CEO, Herrmann International

It’s often reported that our knowledge of the brain doubles every 10 years; the recent explosion of research and methods means we may be learning much more, much faster.

In some ways, this has been a mixed blessing for training professionals. While learning is a mental activity, and understanding how people think and process information is essential to engaging them and getting long-term results, I’ve heard more than one leader say, “It’s all very interesting, but what do I do with it?”

Scientific theories are helpful, but what really matters is application. Here are 10 key points for applying the research to engage your learners’ brains and increase your own efficiency:

  1. Every learner’s brain is unique, specialized, and situational. We all have preferred modes of learning and thinking. Plan for a full diversity of styles, and be aware of how your own preferences affect you as the designer or trainer. The more important the learning points, the more important it is to bring in a “tapestry” of approaches that appeal to all the thinkers in your group.
  2. Mindsets frame how we see the world and can interfere with learning. To overcome the brain’s resistance to change, use a “Whole Brain” approach: Provide context, engage emotions, introduce novelty, create meaty challenges, and provide time for processing and practice.
  3. The brain looks for patterns, and those patterns form the way we think. The brain will “fill in the blanks” based on prior experiences, so you can use this to your advantage to accelerate learning, but be careful of the mindset trap.
  4. The greater the mental stretch, the more energy it takes to learn. To make sure learners are mentally prepared for the challenge, prepare the brain by providing context and aligning design with the learner’s needs.
  5. Learners need stretch, NOT stress. Stress alters neuron growth. As you challenge learners, watch for too much stress, which will shut learning down.
  6. Learners don’t pay attention to boring things. Particularly now, when there is almost an addiction to the constant stimulus of e-mails and other interruptions, if the brain doesn’t have an array of different activities to engage in, it becomes bored.
  7. The brain isn’t multi-tasking, it’s task switching, and a wealth of research shows that it just isn’t good at it. But face it: Your learners are multi-tasking, so plan for it. Provide e-mail breaks and other options to keep them focused during the training.
  8. Memories strengthen during periods of rest, even when we’re awake. Staggered training and breaks will help learners retain information they just learned.
  9. What isn’t rehearsed doesn’t stick in long-term memory. For critical content that must be processed and moved to long-term memory, make sure there is adequate learning, practice, and reinforcement time.
  10. The brain is wired to be social. Take advantage of online collaboration tools, and don’t forget the “old-fashioned” methods such as mentoring and group work challenges.


By Michael Vaughan, CEO, The Regis Company, and Author, “The Thinking Effect: Rethinking Thinking to Create Great Leaders and the New Value Worker” (www.TheThinkingEffect.com)

Some people live to make lists. I even know someone who always starts each list with “Make a list” so that once they are done, they immediately can check something off.

Understandably, our brains are easily enamored by a checklist—or a step-by-step process or catchy acronym—but that romance draws us steadily away from critical thinking. Our brains like the simplicity of a list because it keeps our brains from having to work too hard; the list does the heavy lifting (or so we tell ourselves).

Daniel Kahneman, recipient of the Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences for his work challenging the rational model of decision-making, explains that our brains function using two distinct systems:

System 1 is our “fast” brain. Think of this as our automatic pilot or subconscious brain.

System 2 is our “slow” brain. It is responsible for analyzing information, assessing data, and considering solutions.

In real-world settings, it’s tough to trigger System 2 thinking, even though it’s often more desirable. This is why lists or step-by-step processes do not help; they steer into System 1 thinking.

After 10 years of researching critical thinking, we have discovered that at the core of effective critical thinking are good questions. Why? Because the right question can trigger System 2. Unfortunately, many questions we ask aren’t “good” because they merely sooth our System 2 brain, allowing System 1 to jump up and provide a reflexive answer.

Each brain is a searchable database designed to store information, find and retrieve answers, and solve problems. But the answers generated by the brain depend on the quality of the questions that are asked. Better questions make the brain search deeper, pushing past emotional or surface-level responses (System 1) and searching for creative solutions (System 2).

In the business world, individuals and organizations must ask good questions—the kind that trigger System 2 and positively affect the direction you take. Unfortunately, most of our adult brains have suppressed the innate questioning talents we had as children (when was the last time a colleague repeatedly, doggedly asked, “But why have we always done it that way?”). So, instead of digging deeper into an issue, we accept what we see at the surface.

It’s similar to the way many people view their cars. On the surface it’s a stylized combination of body, windows, and wheels, and if you pop the hood, you see an engine. You fill the tank with fuel, turn the key, and voila! it works. But if you know better and look deeper, a car is an intricate arrangement of interrelated systems composed of mechanical parts, electrical networks, and chemical reactions—all working together to get you from point A to point B. Understanding your car at the surface may be just fine; however, understanding why your organization continues to spiral around the same issues time after time requires that you go deeper and understand the interrelated systems. It requires deliberate questions that trigger System 2 thinking.

What follows is a subset of the Core Thinking Practices. Each Practice is meant to help you shed light on a situation by reframing it so you can view it from different perspectives. This brief period of “disconnecting” and momentarily changing your perspective enables your brain to formulate good questions and find thoughtful responses:

  • Seek to understand the big picture. Look at the situation from a variety of angles and points of view. A narrow viewpoint only limits your ability to see what really is happening.
  • Seek to surface limiting beliefs. Ask tough questions and challenge all assumptions about what is happening and why. Wishful thinking, seeking information that confirms an existing bias, or framing questions to get positive responses will only exacerbate the problem.
  • Seek to understand the underlying dynamics. Identify interdependent factors that contribute to a problem. There is often more than just one, and simply “fixing” one aspect of the problem may create new ones.

The discipline of critical thinking requires just that: discipline. No amount of lists or acronyms will help trigger the brain power that is needed—those over-simplified approaches will mire you in knee-jerk reactions. Instead, go deep. Ask the questions that make people squirm at first but eventually lead to thoughtful solutions that address the underlying issues.


Whole Brain Thinking: Ignore It at Your Peril

Thirty years ago, a high-potential manager in a training class at General Electric’s corporate university listened as my father, Ned Herrmann, then head of GE’s management education, discussed research he was developing on how the brain affects day-to-day operations.

Struggling to find relevance, the manager remarked, “Learning about the brain is certainly interesting, but Ned, what does the brain have to do with managing?”

“Everything!” Herrmann replied.

By contrast, those learning about whole brain thinking today are often struck by its real-world impact and applications. A manager in a recent whole brain thinking leadership program exclaimed: “If only I had known this years ago! It would have saved me so much time and frustration!”

Yet, even in the midst of an explosion of information about the brain – from the plethora of studies and books to the emergence of new fields (“neuro-fill-in-the-blank”) to the deluge of programming ranging from Charlie Rose to the nightly news – many questions still linger:

What do the brain and whole brain thinking have to do with work performance? What have we learned, and what are the implications for the 21st century? What do you need to know now to increase performance results? And what must we, as workplace performance professionals, do to make full use of the diversity of brains in our organizations?

What is whole brain thinking?

Originally inspired by the popular left brain – right brain research into brain specialization, the concept of a “whole brain” has evolved into a useful but often poorly defined framework for learning and performance.

We know that the brain functions as a whole system – a valuable sum of its parts – integrating the various specialized functions of the asymmetrical brain. All current research continues to reinforce this initial finding of the late 1970s: that the 100 billion neurons in the brain are indeed specialized.

As neuroanamotist Jill Bolte Taylor describes it in her book My Stroke of Insight, “Although each of our cerebral hemispheres processes information in uniquely different ways, the two work intimately together when it comes to just about every action we take. The more we understand about how our hemispheres work together to create our perception of reality, the more successful we will be in understanding the natural gifts of our own brains.”

The first critical takeway from whole brain thinking that we need to understand is that we are designed to be whole. The brain is specialized, and the degree of specialization affects how we think and what we pay attention to. We do not function with “half a brain” as the terms “left brained” and “right brained” imply. In fact, the brain’s very design gives us the opportunity to think in terms of and versus or.

This is not new information, although the advent of popular books, such as Daniel Pink’s The Whole New Mind, which focuses on the power of right brain thinking, has contributed a new level of general awareness to the subject.

But as Pink himself recently said to me, “Left brain approaches haven’t become obsolete. They’ve become insufficient. What people need today isn’t one side of the brain or the other, but a whole new mind.”

We are designed to be whole, but our brains have developed favoring certain types of thinking and learning over others, and those preferences have consequences. The good news is that because we are designed to be whole, we have the ability to think in a whole brain way, even though we have a tendency to default to our preferences. Therein lies the key to competitive advantage – the individual or organization that develops the ability to create and communicate in new ways, without limits.

New learning about learning

What has changed? Technology, for one, has opened the door to faster and more in-depth research than was possible when the early studies were conducted.

To perform his initial experiments demonstrating specialization, my father actually wired me up to an EEG for testing. Today’s much less invasive technology has enabled us to learn significantly more about how the brain works.

How often have you wondered why a learner struggles with a given activity? The wide range of diagnostic devices now available to us can monitor brain activity in new ways, and that has led to an array of new findings. For example, one fascinating study explained why infants can learn any language without difficulty, yet adults struggle hearing sounds as they attempt to learn new languages.

New studies conducted by Daniel Goleman (author of books on emotional and social intelligence) and others have generated a growing body of research that has led to new insight into how people are affected by the design of the brain. As author and Harvard researcher Clayton Christensen points out in the book Disrupting Class: How Disruptive Innovation Will Change the Way the World Learns, this research shows that “people learn in different ways – some of this is encoded in our brains at birth; other differences emerge based on what we experience in life.”

The second takeaway about whole brain thinking is that we need to understand that the design of our brain affects the way we learn. Learning actually creates new neuronal connections. As learning professionals, it is essential to have a solid foundation of knowledge about the brain to effectively drive learning outcomes. From there, we can use practical tools to diagnose learners and apply that knowledge to raise organizational performance.

When it comes to learning design, whole brain thinking and learning is, in a nutshell, your “killer app.” Understanding learners’ thinking and learning styles is the first step toward developing learning that engages and sticks. (See “The Learner: What We Need to Know” in the ASTD Handbook for Workplace Learning Professionals.)

How to use whole brain thinking

With performance improvement critical to success in these difficult times, we must identify the areas where a whole brain approach can have the greatest impact.

Are you struggling, as many others are, with an increased workload but fewer resources? The solution rests not in using our brains more (we don’t have unlimited capacity), but in using them more effectively.

Author and thought leader Charles Handy asked CEOs what percentage of the brainpower was actually used in their organizations. The response: about 35 percent. Most audiences I work with agree, with many citing numbers as low as 2 percent. Clearly there is an opportunity for improvement (being mindful rather than mind-full) by tapping into the brainpower available to us.

So, the third critical takeaway we need to understand is that a whole brain approach helps us get more from our collective brainpower. Whole brain thinking can build bridges between functions, generations, and levels, and between any “disconnects” that exist in an organization. This in turn contributes to reaching greater productivity, innovative solutions, increased speed, and even cultural transformation.

With a common understanding of thinking preferences and the benefits of whole brain thinking, people see the necessity and utility of diverse thought. At that point, we can begin fully leveraging the individual and collective brainpower of the organization.

This is an approach that IBM has used to achieve many successes within its global leader development program.

IBM’s globally integrated workforce gives it a competitive advantage in serving clients, says Rich DeSerio, manager of the IBM leadership development programs’ Global Design Team.

“To be truly global requires that all IBMers be culturally adaptable in all its forms,” says DeSerio. “This extends beyond just understanding our cultural diversity to using this diversity to extend that competitive advantage. Whole brain thinking allows us to understand, appreciate, and most importantly, leverage the diversity of thought that naturally exists in our company.”

Whole brain thinking also shows us that we all learn differently, have access to different thinking preferences, and flex our thinking when the situation demands it.

Need buy-in? Use your whole brain

When budgets are tight and proving value is critical, whole brain thinking provides a framework for harnessing all the brainpower at your disposal.

Why not start with our own profession? For years, I have heard leaders in our field say that they want a “seat at the table.” This struggle to prove the business value of our function is often rooted in a tendency to speak from our own preferences rather than adjusting for the needs and expectations of senior business leaders.

In Herrmann International’s 30 years of research, we have gathered more than 1 million data samples, and clear patterns have surfaced.

The data reveals that workplace performance professionals have their own specialized preferences, while senior and “C-level” executives tend to be more whole brained in their thinking, with a tilt toward their functional background or expertise (see Figure 1). The workplace performance professional’s frustrations frequently come from a failure to use a whole brain approach when attempting to demonstrate the value and return-on-investment (or, as I like to define it, intelligence) of their core work.

A training manager once told me, “I can’t seem to get them to acknowledge the improvements we’ve achieved.” What I found was that he had overlooked a critical piece of “A quadrant” thinking that all senior leaders need to see pre- and postbenchmark data.

In another organization, a lack of “B quadrant” thinking led to a rocky rollout of a global change initiative because last-minute changes were made to correct overlooked logistics, communication, and management issues.

How many e-learning initiatives have sat on “virtual shelves” without adoption by target users? A technically perfect e-learning curriculum that doesn’t culturally fit or hasn’t been positioned for value is doomed to fail because it overlooks the “C quadrant” needs of customers.

Years ago, I worked with a very enthusiastic learning and development group that was launching a new training program. When asked by a visiting senior executive how this aligned with corporate strategy (important to the “D quadrant”) they could not give an immediate or compelling answer.

Not only are individuals designed to be whole, our data shows that organizations are whole brain entities, too. Thus, key initiatives must be whole brained to meet the organization’s needs. If we do not begin applying whole brain thinking, our profession will remain marginalized as “soft stuff” – prisoners of our own preferences, focusing uniquely on the learning aspects that we feel are most important but that we are unable to sell to decision makers.

Diverse by design

Whole brain teams are also producing big dividends for many organizations. A six-year study conducted with the U.S. Forest Service using the Herrmann Brain Dominance Instrument (HBDI) demonstrated that whole brain teams can be up to 66 percent more effective than randomly assigned teams. A few caveats: One whole brain thinker per team is essential to help bridge different mental modes. And more than seven team members make it exponentially more difficult to manage through the diversity.

Fred Keeton, chief diversity officer at Harrah’s, uses this approach to solve complex challenges by building “diverse – by-design” teams composed of cognitively diverse members. With diverse – by-design teams, we can see a significant increase in creative and innovative output. This premise was at the core of Ned’s initial research and has proven to hold true.

The fourth and final critical takeaway is that it only works when you use it. Thirty years later, we still hear people saying that they “don’t do” a certain type of thinking or can’t be creative because they are “not right brained.”

Remember, It’s not right versus left; it’s your whole brain. You just need to learn how to access and use it. To be efficient and creative, seek out people who might make you uncomfortable but who will provide a different perspective. It may turn out to be the winning differentiator.

In practice

Several years ago, a global pharmaceutical executive challenged his learning and development team to reduce the time to train new sales reps from 24 to 12 months. They used a framework of whole brain thinking to make it happen.

The initiative began with an analysis of the mental demands of the sales function as mapped across the whole brain model. After discovering their own thinking preferences (via the HBDI), sales reps learned how to apply that knowledge to mastering the job and making productive connections with clients.

In addition, sales coaches learned how to adjust their thinking styles to better serve the needs of the reps they coached, and the learning and development team used whole brain learning design to ensure that training and reinforcement tools would effectively engage the various thinking preferences in the group.

The company not only achieved but surpassed its goal, reducing job mastery time to seven months. During a period of three years, it also recorded increased sales revenue and improved results in its key sales process metrics. What performance objectives in your organization would benefit from this type of improvement?

The era of and

Now more than ever, our environment demands that we embrace the concept of and, not or, to be successful. There is power in the paradox that comes from diverse perspectives. Whole brain thinking gives us that “killer app” to put them to work and deliver results.

To get the most out of our organizational brainpower, we must start by using the whole brain framework as a lens for assessing strategic initiatives and clarifying challenges. Our research has shown that better problem solving involves all four quadrants of the whole brain model.

Next we must design learning and performance programs to meet strategic objectives based on how our customers’ (both internal and external) brains work by applying a whole brain approach.

Finally, as a profession, we have to learn to think like business leaders, serving our organizations using our whole brains, if we hope to have a “seat at the table.”

Turning Team Brainpower into Business Results

Ann Herrmann-Nehdi, CEO of Herrmann International, contributed this article to BusinessNewsDaily’s Expert Voices: Op-Ed & Insights.

With business and market demands high, it’s no surprise companies are turning to teams to get results. The team advantage is based on an expectation that the whole will add up to more than the sum of its parts.

But is that really happening?

Consider just a few of the challenges today’s teams are dealing with:

  • complex problems with no clear-cut solutions
  • severe time and resource constraints
  • virtual, diverse and cross-functional participants
  • heightened customer expectations and competitive pressures

It’s tough to be productive in such an environment, yet we’re asking teams to do more and do it faster and better than ever. For all the teambuilding retreats, sensitivity training sessions, and personality and productivity workshops we send people through, however, too many teams still struggle and their companies are losing out.

Many of these activities “make us feel good,” says Margaret Neale, professor of organizational behavior at Stanford’s Graduate School of Business. “What they don’t do is improve team performance.”

Even worse, a survey of 1,000 employees in the UK revealed that they often “only succeed in leaving staff feeling more awkward about dealing with their colleagues.”

These approaches often fail to significantly improve performance and productivity or drive business results because they overlook an essential factor: Thinking.

Harnessing the collective intelligence of teams

Our more than 30 years of research on the brain and performance has shown that when people come together, their ability to communicate, problem solve and get the most from their diverse experience and perspectives starts with understanding how they prefer to think, both as individuals and as a group. To what degree do they prefer analytical, structured, interpersonal or conceptual styles of thinking, and how do these different modes affect team dynamics and contribute to overall outcomes?

With knowledge workers, you can’t develop and maintain an exceptional, consistently high-performing team without focusing first on the thinking that drives the team’s behaviors and actions. This is true whether you’re dealing with intact (co-located or virtual) or project-specific teams, or if you just need people to collaborate on the fly to address everyday issues.

It’s also true for any type of team, whether in the workplace or on the playing field, but from a business standpoint, focusing on thinking versus personality offers additional advantages: It removes emotion from issues a team may typically avoid addressing, and it drills down to the mental processes behind behaviors, providing a clear business connection and applicability.

Power up every meeting of the minds

Thinking style data, which can be assessed and then used as a starting point for discussions and activities, reveals a number of important clues about how a team works. The preferences of individual members and the team as whole will affect the way the team:

  • communicates
  • makes decisions
  • manages processes and work flows
  • generates ideas
  • solves problems

Using a thinking-based approach to team development allows you to address team alignment issues in the context of their business challenges and create a foundation for productive collaboration, even when face time is rare and projects are intense and pressure filled.

Here are some tips for getting the most from a team’s brainpower:

Recognize that getting results requires more than just getting along. Team members have to understand how their thinking drives performance and how to optimize what they do to be more efficient and effective.

Use cognitive diversity to your strategic advantage. As business issues grow more complex, assemble teams with the mental diversity to tackle them. The most innovative ideas and solutions come from diverse thinking and “creative abrasion.”

Bring in smart management. The more diverse a team is, the more important it is to have a skilled leader involved to ensure diverse thinking is respected, managed, heard and applied.

Push homogenous teams outside their comfort zones. Teams comprised of largely similar thinking styles need to learn to see past their mental “blind spots,”hold each other accountable for stretching their thinking, and if necessary, bring in different thinking and outside perspectives.

Provide training and on-the-job tools. Knowing about thinking preferences is just the first step. Team members need skills and tools to apply that knowledge so they can benefit from it.

When team members understand the importance of a breadth of thinking and how each person’s thinking adds value, differences will be viewed in a nonjudgmental way, and the team will have new context for how they can tackle the inevitable challenges the come up. As a professor who uses this approach in MBA team programs explains:

“Once they get the concept that we all have brains, we just use them differently, and that we need all of those modes of thinking to get the job done, they get over the typical quibbling that takes up so much energy and drags down effectiveness.”

– See more at: http://www.businessnewsdaily.com/4444-teamwork.html#sthash.Tgrv48Vm.dpuf

Join the Global Practitioner Network

Get started by getting HBDI certified or finding a licensed, Certified Practitioner who can deliver Whole Brain Thinking into your organisation.

Deliver business value and measurable results by helping people, teams, and organisations leverage the connection between thinking, behaviour and performance.

HBDI® Certification is a 3 day interactive workshop. We have regularly scheduled public sessions or it can be hosted in a location of your choice if you have 3 or more attendees from the same organisation.

HBDI® Certification prepares you to use, apply, and interpret the range of HBDI® Reports for individuals, teams and groups of any size.

Our Certified Practitioners work in many disciplines including HR, learning & development, management consultancy, organisational development, executive coaching and many more professions.


Deliver business value and measurable results by helping people, teams, and organisations leverage the connection between thinking, behaviour and performance.

HBDI® Certification is a 3 day interactive workshop. We have regularly scheduled public sessions or it can be hosted in a location of your choice if you have 3 or more attendees from the same organisation.

HBDI® Certification prepares you to use, apply, and interpret the range of HBDI® Reports for individuals, teams and groups of any size.

Our Certified Practitioners work in many disciplines including HR, learning & development, management consultancy, organisational development, executive coaching and many more professions.


Master Trainers and Future Training

Our master trainers use the latest techniques to build each candidate’s knowledge and confidence so they become ‘multilingual’ in the language of the Whole Brain® Thinking Model and four different thinking preferences.

HBDI® Certified Practitioners can attend additional training days and workshops to refresh and further develop their facilitation and delivery skills – and give you the confidence to run our programs with the most challenging of groups.

Access to Tools and Resources

Participants get the tools and practice to prepare them to implement Whole Brain® solutions at the individual, team and organisational levels.

Our Practitioner Portal is a dedicated on-line resource library of case studies, articles, videos, images and white papers along with a comprehensive range of marketing and presentation material that you can download and incorporate into your programs.

Creating a Culture

Creating a culture of Whole Brain® Thinking requires an intimate understanding of the HBDI and how it can be applied within your organisation.

Herrmann Certification gives you this understanding – and it’s a highly cost-effective option for any organisation wanting to widely embed Whole Brain® Thinking within its people, processes and strategies.


Use, interpret and apply the Whole Brain® System, concepts and programs, including the HBDI®family of assessments

Deliver learning solutions that result in real business impact

Help individuals, teams and the entire organisation unleash their collective intelligence

Life without Barriers and Clear Thinking

Get started by getting HBDI certified or finding a licensed, Certified Practitioner who can deliver Whole Brain Thinking into your organisation.

Whole Brain Thinking Improving Performance.

Get started by getting HBDI certified or finding a licensed, Certified Practitioner who can deliver Whole Brain Thinking into your organisation.