Last month’s poll: Would improving your memory skills boost your productivity at work?

It looks like we could all use some help. 100% said yes.

Staying on your game at work

Is it Julia or is it Joan? Your new client’s first name is firmly stuck on the tip of your tongue and refuses to budge. Sound familiar?

Modern workplaces are a challenge even for people who pride themselves on having a good memory — all those names, passwords, deadlines, and meeting dates jockeying for position in your head.

In response to this need, Baycrest scientists have developed a corporate training program, called Memory@Work, to help you stay sharp in the workplace. The program includes an interactive workshop, e-learning modules and training delivered on smartphones. It will be piloted this year as Cogniciti’s first brain fitness product. Cogniciti is a new for-profit company launched this year by Baycrest and the MaRS centre for innovation.

Our aging workforce

The Canadian government estimates that by 2011 approximately 41% of the working population will be between the ages of 45 and 64, compared to 29% in 1991. (www.labour.gc.ca)

With an aging workforce, we know that corporations want to help their older employees stay cognitively fit for sound decision-making, better productivity and even better staff morale, all of which are known to support strong financial performance.

For employees who worry that diminishing memory and thinking powers may hurt their performance, the Memory@Work progam is designed to help them maintain and improve their:

  • memory performance
  • strategic abilities
  • planning and organizing skills
  • ability to stay focused on tasks
  • efficiency

Psychologist Angela Troyer, one of the team of memory experts at Baycrest who developed the program, notes that “people who have been in their jobs longer have a lot of expertise and are really valued, but they may find that they are not remembering new things as fast as they did when they were younger. These are people who want to stay on top of their game, and they feel it would give them an edge to have memory training.”

The program does not promise a quick fix, however. The memory-strengthening techniques must be practiced regularly to be effective, requiring a commitment much like working out at a gym to keep the body in shape.

If you are between 25 and 65 and would like to be one of the first people to participate in the Memory@Work brain fitness training, please send an e-mail to pilot@cogniciti.com. The free courses will be held in July and August, 2010.

To support Baycrest and exciting initiatives, DONATE ONLINE or call the donations line at 416-785-2875 or 1-800-223-2087.