The Five Minds Theory

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I recently came across a 1983 article by Howard Gardner, from Harvard Business School, in which he discusses his theory on the “five minds.” The idea goes that successful leaders have learned to develop these five minds over the course of their careers and their success is tied to these five key areas. I have shortened many of the concepts and I hope I can give you the essence of his theories. Here are Gardner’s Five Minds ideas:

  • The Disciplined Mind. Leaders gain this “mind” through the practice of discipline and sustained effort. We gain experience by doggedly working on a project or idea that causes us to study and develop a deep understanding of processes, ideas or concepts. In other words, sustained experience counts for something
  • The Synthesizing Mind. Leaders know how to survey a wide range of resources, information and data and can distill what is important and what is trivial. With time and experience, a synthesizing mind can very quickly integrate new information and see how it all fits together.
  • The Creative Mind. This process causes a leader to search for new ideas and concepts. It is a mind that is always looking for new ideas or how to solve problems. The creative mind is not satisfied with the status quo. This mind sees new things and is willing to try new things or to see how a new idea or product would fit. The creative mind is a risk taker.
  • The Respectful Mind. This part of the process is a leader who is open to new experiences and tries to form relationships with other people. The respectful mind tries to connect and to understand emotions and attitudes. A person with a respectful mind gives the benefit of the doubt and second chances.
  • The Ethical Mind. The ethical mind goes to the next level and asks, “What kind of person, citizen and leader do I want to be?” Even deeper is the question, “If everyone thoughts as I do or acted as I do what would the world be like?” The idea goes to the very core of our beliefs about ourselves and our surroundings. Can we change our fundamental core when confronted with truth?

I like many of the concepts and I can see how strong leaders have many of these qualities.

The Chamber’s 63rd Annual Banquet is Thursday, November 2 at Valencia starting at 6:30PM. We will be honoring Paul Moxley and Janet Vackar as Man and Woman of the year. There are a few tickets left, for more information call Blanca at 682-2871.

Qoute of the week: “Make it east for your customers to do business with you.”

See you in Mcallen!

As Featured in the Monitor October 29, 2017