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<xTITLE>Brain Talk: How To Talk With Your Clients About Neuroscience</xTITLE>

Brain Talk: How To Talk With Your Clients About Neuroscience

by Stephanie West Allen
February 2010

From Stephanie West Allen's blog on Neuroscience and conflict resolution.

Stephanie West Allen

Last November, I posted a poll in a post titled Do you tell your clients about neuroscience? A quick poll. I appreciate the time and thought taken by those who responded.

The first question I asked was

How much information do you typically share with your clients about neuroscience? 1=Not Much, 5=Everything I Know

The responses:

1 - 5.6%
2 - 22.2%  

3 - 38.9% 

4 - 16.7%

5 - 16.7%

It appears that only about a third of respondents are discussing neuroscience with clients higher than at a mid-level.

The responses to the rest of the questions were helpful. Some of the comments indicated confusion between psychology and neuroscience. The ideas about neuroscience were certainly not monolithic; people have varying notions of what brain science is and what it can (and cannot) tell us.

As one who shares what I know about neuroscience not only professionally, but also with my friends and family, I recommend brain talk as a facilitator of communication. Talking about neuroscience also increases self-awareness. But I am not, today, going to continue listing benefits. Instead I want to recommend a resource.

Do you want to improve your ability to discuss the brain with clients? Then I have an excellent course for you being taught by someone for whom I have much respect. I have before blogged about Bonnie Badenoch at BonP. Now I am happy to report that you can take from her a class via distance education in February.

The day-long course is for anyone who works with others. From the class description:

In Weaving Brain Talk into the Flow of Practice, our neuroscience discoveries become most useful when we are able to talk about them with our clients, students, or co-workers. To ease our way into user-friendly language, we briefly review the concepts of IPNB [Interpersonal Neurobiology] and practice finding our own words to share these ideas. By the end of the class, you will have gained confidence in your ability to apply neuroscience to whatever you do.

The live part of the class will be presented on February 19, but you can watch a recording of it online until March 8. The fee for non-credit participation is $175 if you register before February 6. Click for all the details. It's an excellent opportunity!


Stephanie West Allen, JD, practiced law in California for several years, held offices in local bar associations, and wrote chapters for California Continuing Education of the Bar. While in CA, Stephanie completed several five-day mediation training programs with the Center for Mediation in Law, as well as a two-year intensive with Center co-founder Gary Friedman. She has been a mediator for over two and one-half decades.

She is the author of Triversity Fantasy — Seven Keys To Unlock Prejudice, Creating Your Own Funeral or Memorial Service: A Workbook and many articles on workplace and professional issues for such publications as Lawyer Hiring and Training Report, Colorado Nurse, The Complete Lawyer, National Law Journal, Of Counsel, Law Practice and Denver Business Journal.

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Additional articles by Stephanie West Allen