This blog was originally going to talk about the importance of utilizing the analytical and process side of our brains along with the artistic and creative side in product development. It didn’t take me long to learn that there really isn’t a ‘side’ of the brain one uses versus another, but that all brains use BOTH sides of the brain. Although the two sides function differently, they work together and complement each other. You don’t use only one side of your brain at a time.
This blog quickly got redirected into – ‘Why design engineers benefit by using all of their brain’.
The theory I learned is that people either are left-brained or right-brained. This concept suggests that humans are either one or the other. Analytical and methodical, or creative and artistic. This theory is based on research done in the 1960s by Roger W. Sperry, where he categorized the left brain as being more verbal, analytical and orderly – sometimes called the digital brain. While the right brain is more visual and intuitive, or referred to as the analog brain with a more creative and “less organized” way of thinking.
likes to read, write and compute
likes to create, not organized
|thinking in words
Throughout my career of working with, mentoring, teaching and hiring engineers to design and develop products I noticed that engineers that are well-rounded in both the arts and sciences are hugely successful and are passionate about their careers.
The engineer that grew up building model airplanes and putting Legos together still likes to build things and put them together. The engineer that grew up drawing and sculpting still likes to sketch assemblies and model up design forms. The engineer that liked building rockets and launching them still likes to build prototypes and test them.
These engineers embody the desire to visualize (right brain), calculate (left brain), create (right brain) and then build (left brain) imagined products from specifications.
These are the engineers you want to hire!
Curious as to your brain hemisphere focus – right or left? Here’s a website that helps determine brain dominance.