©Arlene R. Taylor PhD

altAlmost any brain can lead when it is necessary to do so. The way in which the individual leads, however, and the behavioral characteristics that hold sway over time may reflect the person’s innate brain bent. Certainly a myriad of other factors can impact how people really behave when trying to lead.

Each cerebral division provides key leadership functions that can lead toward success. Taken to the extreme, however, those same key functions can turn into huge liabilities. (Refer to Balance and Brain Lead for additional information.)

altPrioritizing Division

altEnvisioning Division


Individuals with a brain bent in this division may:

  • Exhibit an authoritarian leadership style and may even be willing to go to grave lengths to achieve compliance (e.g., bribes, threats, coercion, punishment, shaming, dismissal from the organization, or abuse if not healthy and balanced)
  • Have high concerns for goal-setting, goal-achievement, and profitability and have less concerns for people and their “feelings”
  • Facilitate making logical choices, timely and decisive decisions, stabilizing performance, and evaluating financials
  • Want to win at almost any cost (especially if extraverted) - as a consequence they may miss the big picture and ride roughshod over others, which can lead to them take risks that are outside standard practices (e.g., outside established regulations or in a gray area of business), which can have negative financial and legal implications for the organization


Individuals with a brain bent in this division may:

  • Exhibit an entrepreneurial leadership style and may employ inspiring rhetoric, charismatic presentations, and promises of future rewards to obtain compliance
  • Have high concerns for problem-solving, processes, trending, innovation (less for routines, details, maintaining the status quo)
  • Facilitate inventing, beginning, starting, or birthing a project and moving quickly at the cutting-edge margin of an idea
  • Dislike conflict and, after a few attempts at resolution, may distance themselves emotionally and/or physically from the conflict - as a consequence they may be perceived as uninterested and out-of-touch, or they move ahead with the innovations regardless of regulations or environmental realities, which can lead to eventual chaos within the organization


altMaintaining Division

altHarmonizing Division


Individuals with a brain bent in this division may:

  • Exhibit a maintaining leadership style and may invoke rules, regulations, and laws to obtain compliance
  • Have high concerns for routines, rules, regulations (less for spontaneity, problem-solving, or brainstorming)
  • Facilitate storing and retrieval of information with the view to meeting deadlines for product and/or services
  • Attempt to avoid change and innovation and maintain the status quo and may dig in their heels - as a consequence they may miss desirable opportunities and “not move forward,” (which can have long-term negative implications for the viability of the organization)


Individuals with a brain bent in this division may:

  • Exhibit an accommodating leadership style and may resort to manipulation, cajoling, or bribery to achieve compliance and harmony
  • Have high concerns for people (less for results, quotas, budget compliance)
  • Facilitate processes, collaboration, feedback, and conversation
  • Attempt to avoid conflict and controversy through overcomplying and overconforming and, as a consequence, fail to “get the job done” (which can lead to serious negative implications for the financial viability of the organization)