herrmann brain dominance model

6 benefits of the Herrmann Brain Dominance Instrument (HBDI)

What is the Herrmann Brain Dominance Instrument®?

The Herrmann Brain Dominance Instrument® is based on the Whole Brain Thinking® framework and is an assessment tool that evaluates an individual’s thinking process and how it reflects in certain aspects of their work-life. This assessment is typically used to raise people’s awareness of their strengths in ways that they can capitalise on to make better decisions, become more creative problem solvers, and improve overall performance. 


Four styles of thinking for the HBDI assessment

There are four styles of thinking, or quadrants, that the HBDI assessment accounts for:


The A Quadrant – Analytical: analysis of facts, numbers processing, logical thinking

The B Quadrant – Practical: organising facts, detailed review, planning approach

The C Quadrant – Relational: interpersonal, expressive, intuitive

The D Quadrant – Experimental: big-picture thinking, imaginative, conceptual thinking


Breakthrough Thinking

Understanding the HBDI profile for individuals can mean the difference between making a right decision, and making the best decision. Leaders today must be able to adapt to rapidly changing situations that requires them to shift their thinking in ways that enable them to come up with the best solutions. No two challenges are the same, and a great leader needs to be armed with the tools to overcome them. This type of psychometric assessment provides insight into the patterns that determine which of the four quadrants they fall into when problem solving. It is important too, that an understanding of each quadrant is developed so that you have a more complete arsenal of approaches from which to draw.


Creates Well Rounded Teams

By utilising the HBDI profile for teams, leaders can adapt their communication and coaching to support their specific needs rather than applying a singular, one-size-fits-all approach. Teams can be built to consist of people with diverse thinking processes. When they learn to account for their HBDI, they are able to recognise when a challenge they face will require a particular style of problem solving. Calling on the skills of a ‘D’ quadrant, imaginative thinker for example can be useful when navigating cultural change. Their ability to conceptualise ideas in a larger context is helpful when projects are starting out to provide clarity about the end vision. Each style of thinking identified by each quadrant, provides an invaluable resource to productivity and performance.



Strong communication is an integral element of any high performing team or organisation. The efficiency of how we distribute important information with clarity is what allows productivity to flourish. Whole Brain Thinking® introduces a common vocabulary that allows for ideas and information to be shared and more importantly, understood, by everyone without the chance of being misunderstood. By revealing the HBDI profile for individuals, we gain insight into the way that they understand information. So, when we need to communicate complex ideas we can do so more easily by phrasing it in words that align with their way of thinking. Knowing the Herrmann Brain Dominance Instrument® profiles of others can also help us to understand the ideas they are sharing with us, as we more easily understand some of their background thinking. 


Builds a Culture of Support

Developing this deep level of understanding of each other’s ways of thinking and problem solving results in creating a more connected workplace culture. Strong communication and comprehension also builds a network of support. For example, a ‘C’ quadrant thinker might be asked for advice about keeping team morale high or, an ‘A’ quadrant thinker may assist in quantifying goals. Successful organisations have a culture that goes beyond accepting differences; they embrace and leverage those differences to push themselves further.


Growth and Performance

Thought management tools such as the HBDI help us to understand the strengths and weaknesses of our approach to learning. We may struggle to understand new methods, not because they are too complex, but because the information is being delivered in a way that is incompatible with how we prefer to learn. Not many people know what their preferred method is. A focus on how new ideas and skills are taught can be equally as important as learning them at all. Improvement in productivity occurs when we approach skills development in ways that make the most sense for the individual.


Sustainable Change

Creating on-going and sustainable change is difficult for many organisations to achieve, especially for those who have a ‘the way it’s always been done’ mentality. Embracing new ways of doing business allows organisations to make continuous improvements. They don’t become complacent  or reliant on outdated practices. Adopting a Whole Brain Thinking® approach to business practises, creates possibilities to implement more creative, innovative ideas that offer a competitive edge.


There is inherent value in exploring the strengths and weaknesses that affect how we process new information and solve problems. It takes a concerted effort to learn to approach challenges from a variety of angles. Discovering your individual or team Herrmann Brain Dominance Instrument® profile can play a pivotal role in decision making, performance, and success. Embracing it is important to avoid becoming too reliant on old patterns that prevent us from reaching our highest potential. 

For more information about The Leadership Sphere and how we can help you unlock performance through leadership, by supporting your leaders at every level of the organisation with leadership development, executive coaching and high performance team programs please visit our website or call us on 1300 100 857.

6 benefits of the Herrmann Brain Dominance Instrument (HBDI)