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Oxytocin, We are Wired to Connect in Business

Two books by Paul Zac Ph.D. have confirmed by research that positive human connection influences the outcome of business. When there is positive engagement even in the business realm the brain releases the hormone oxytocin. Oxytocin increases trust and engagement between people. Business can be a stimulus of oxytocin. The key is that it must be done in a way that stirs positive regard for one another. So when leaders initiate positive relational experiences in the workplace and marketplace our brains respond to it in a positive way and it will increase the amount of trust. And not just on a thought level but on a mind/body shifting level very deep in the operating system of the human makeup. We are wired to connect. We are wired to thrive under positive loving connection as human beings even in the workplace. In fact, Dr. Zac’s work indicates a strong correlation that business interactions can actually bring this out of us as humans.

Seeking Money Loses Money

The problem is we often put non-relational goals as our supreme goal in business. This causes us to stop creating oxytocin. When we are focused on non-relational goals rather than creating mutual value the brain will stop producing oxytocin and produce blocking hormones according to Dr. Zac. The key is then to establish a culture that increases these positive human interactions on all levels. Positive regard for self, team, and customers begins to create a virtuous cycle of commerce where all win and all begin to support each other and create value for one another. This according to John Mackey author of Conscientious Capitalism. Studies in his book show that organizations given to this type of human connection do better economically. It's not just some altruistic pie in the sky notion. It is working with our very base level programming as humanity. We were meant to live and do business supporting and connecting with each other in positive ways.

How to Create a Culture of Connection

Often businesses leave this to chance just allowing individuals to do their best. However, leadership has a huge chance to cultivate this climate by creating a culture that is based on positive human connection. Employee engagement is not something that just happens spontaneously. It requires a conscious plan to focus teams on creating this type of culture. Small Business and large business culture creation is critical for a positive move forward for organizations of any size. Culture enshrines our greatest values and behaviors, and it can be created with intentionality. Oxytocin is just one part of the human body/brain that we tap into when we create cultures of loving connection.


The Ultimate Why is an organizational culture consulting firm specializing in leadership training and culture consulting. To start your journey towards a leadership culture of connection and thriving. Click Here.

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