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Leadership comes from the periphery

Leadership comes from the periphery

Perrin Carey

30 June 2020 at 10:00:00

So often, still, even now, leadership is still predominant from the top down. The human body doesn't do this, so why should organisations?

It’s wrongly understood, by some, that the human body is solely directed and controlled by the brain and central nervous system.

Decisions are often not determined by cognitive conscious thought, but by peripheral feedback from our outlying receptors, which send impulses through feedback loops that never find their way back to the brain.

Decisions are made without conscious thought and responses are actioned without reference to the central nervous system.

An example of this is the proprioceptive feedback loops we create within our muscles while we run over rocky terrain. It would not be possible, given the speed of synaptic flow, for us to make quick enough decisions about our balance and surety under foot if we had to rely on central control.

So what happens in practice is all the feedback and decisions are located in the muscles themselves.

The beauty of this delegation of decision making is that the body can maximise its performance by ensuring super effective feedback loops in its periphery, whilst making magnum decisions in the brain. The brain is free to make the key strategic decisions.

Imagine if businesses did the same and inspired its people to own decision making and this within a framework of understood and lived by values.

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