Article Date: 2/1/2013

Leading Off


Study Sheds Light on Entrepreneur Thought Process

■ Entrepreneurs have a reputation for thinking differently, but now proof exists they actually do. Specifically, self-starters are more likely to use both the right and left sides of their frontal cortex when making decisions, says a Working Paper from researchers at Italy’s University of Bocconi.


Are you an ambidextrous decision-maker?

The brain employs two decision-making mindsets: (1) exploration, or ceasing from the task at hand to search for an alternative course of action (enabling discovery, experimentation, flexibility and innovation), and (2) exploitation, or optimizing the performance of a task, which is linked with high engagement with the current task, choice, a concern with efficiency, production, refinement and selection, the Paper says.

The University of Bocconi authors instructed 63 managers and self-identified entrepreneurs to use four virtual slot machines and decide when to a try new one (exploration) or stick with one (exploitation).

The results: When the entrepreneurs practiced exploration, which, incidentally, didn’t differ from the amount of times the managers did, brain scans revealed they were more likely than the managers to use the frontal cortex’s right (intuitive, subjective and thoughtful) and left (analytical, logical and objective) sides.

“The launch of a new enterprise can be viewed as the consequence of the continuous allocation of attention to both explorative and exploitive processes, and the development of neurological foundations for such choices could be partially useful in this field,” the Paper’s authors write. “In particular, our findings speak to those who have proposed that successful entrepreneurs are better at switching between cognitive processing styles…”

What this means: If you’re thriving in private practice, it could be because you’re ambidextrous with your frontal cortex.

FDA News

■ The OCULUS Corvis ST from OCULUS GmbH, has received FDA clearance for tonometry and pachymetry. (A biomechanical response feature was not available in the United States or cleared by the FDA at press time.) Through the use of a high-speed Scheimpflug camera, the device achieves readings by visualizing the reaction of an air pulse on the cornea.

■ The iExaminer (Welch Allyn), a hardware adapter and associated software that enables you to capture, store, send and retrieve retinal images from the company’s PanOptic Ophthalmoscope, using the iPhone 4 or 4S, has received 510(k) clearance from the FDA.


ASCRS Offers O.D./M.D. Program

■ The American Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery (ASCRS) will offer the Integrated Ophthalmic-Managed Eyecare Delivery Model (IOMED) at the ASCRS Symposium on Cataract, IOL and Refractive Surgery and American Society of Ophthalmic Administrators Congress on Ophthalmic Practice Management held together April 19 to April 23 in San Francisco, Calif. (Courses include comanagement, among others.)

The IOMED courses are available only to those O.D.s who can certify employment by an ophthalmologist, a medical school (not a college of optometry), a managed-care provider, the military, industry/manufacturer or a corporate center (TLC, LCA, etc.).


Employee Engagement Low, Study Says

■ Employee engagement, a key driver of an organization’s success, is lacking, shows “What Drives Employee Engagement And Why it Matters,” a Dale Carnegie Training White Paper created with MSW Research.

Specifically, 29% of a national representative sample of 1,500 employees said they are “fully engaged” with their jobs, while 45% said they are “partially engaged,” and 26% said they are “disengaged.”

Respondents named “Relationship with immediate supervisor, ” “Belief in senior leadership” and “Pride in working for the company” as the key drivers of engagement.

“…The attitude and actions of the immediate supervisor can enhance employee engagement or can create an atmosphere where an employee becomes disengaged. In addition, employees said that believing in the ability of senior leadership to take their input, lead the company in the right direction and openly communicate the state of the organization is key in driving engagement,” the White Paper says.

What this means: Experts forecast the turnover rate might increase to 65%, the White Paper says. Also, recruiting cost is roughly 1.5 times an annual salary. So, it’s essential to address employee engagement.


● A total of 25% of American adults say they’ve gone online to try to find a diagnosis for themselves or someone else, says the Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project report.

● A total of 90% of Americans say they think glaucoma is preventable, 86% say they aren’t aware what part of vision glaucoma affects, 86% say they didn’t know that black race places them at increased risk, and 72% say they think glaucoma has early warning signs, says the AOA’s latest “American Eye-Q” survey.

● A dot hybridization assay for the diagnosis of fungal keratitis is a highly sensitive and specific diagnostic tool that also provides a higher sensitivity vs. culture, says December’s Ophthalmology. Further, the hybridization procedure can be completed within a working day.

● As Dry Eye Disease (DED) severity increases, reading rate decreases, says January’s Optometry and Vision Science. Based on these findings, the study’s authors say reading speed may be used to monitor treatment success in DED patients.

Optometric Management, Volume: , Issue: February 2013, page(s): 12 14