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Increase trust, reduce fear

“The most critical challenge for any organization is to enlarge the circle of trust.”

Command-and-control systems reflect a deep mistrust of employees’ commitment and competence. They also tend to overemphasize sanctions as a way of forcing compliance. That’s why so many organizations are filled with anxious employees who are hesitant to take the initiative or trust their own judgment. Organizational adaptability, innovation, and employee engagement can only thrive in a high-trust, low-fear culture. In such an environment, information is widely shared, contentious opinions are freely expressed, and risk taking is encouraged. Fear paralyzes, mistrust demoralizes—they must be wrung out of our management systems.

120 Stories
239 Hacks
22 Barriers

Increase trust, reduce fear

“The most critical challenge for any organization is to enlarge the circle of trust.”

Command-and-control systems reflect a deep mistrust of employees’ commitment and competence. They also tend to overemphasize sanctions as a way of forcing compliance. That’s why so many organizations are filled with anxious employees who are hesitant to take the initiative or trust their own judgment. Organizational adaptability, innovation, and employee engagement can only thrive in a high-trust, low-fear culture. In such an environment, information is widely shared, contentious opinions are freely expressed, and risk taking is encouraged. Fear paralyzes, mistrust demoralizes—they must be wrung out of our management systems.

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Bring the classroom/school to work and make your colleagues your classmates. Hold "classes" at work where employees can enroll and learn together.
Hack by Akash Sah on September 21, 2010
This hack considers how organisational capability might be unleashed by increasing the level of trust between employer and employee, borrowing from some of the concepts of Tikanga Maori and simply doi
Hack by Alister McCaw on February 25, 2011
Good questions generate thought, focus, and action from the listener. They also convey respect. Is it any wonder that 95% of leaders prefer to be asked questions rather than told what to do?
Hack by Gary Cohen on October 15, 2010
If we are to focus the work of management on a higher purpose, I contend that we need to begin by adjusting our reward systems.  To obtain the highest leverage on this lofty goal, companies shoul
Hack by Stuart Thompson on September 18, 2010
In my ten years at Red Hat (the open source software pioneer), we had a very simple little cultural trick we used everywhere we could:We defaulted to open.What does this mean?
Hack by Chris Grams on August 5, 2010
I in a recent meeting with about 15 local small business CEOs I was struck by a discussion about one firm’s growth struggles.
Story by Jack McGuinness on February 2, 2011
One of my friend working in a big multi national company (Culturally diverse), was talking to me and said that : "Dude, My Boss told me to control my enthusiasm of how I do stuff!!, And it was really
Barrier by Tap Kham on September 1, 2012
Culture change is hard.  Whatever the approach, its a long term proposition riddled with ambiguity.  If your tasked with leading a culture change initiative and are struggling with
Hack by David Graham IV on June 29, 2017
A method of solving dilemmas and problems that involves communications and iteration to reach better solutions and commitment to those solutions.
Story by Brian Hurley on June 2, 2010
You may think this company is nuts! They have people who make it work but they aren't employees and they don't make salaries. They have presence in five cities but they don't have a single office.
Story by Matt Shlosberg on July 29, 2010

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