Fear Friendly Culture


What does it look like when your organization or team stops running away from fear and instead embraces it in a healthy way? It’s different for everyone, but here are some things we’ve seen in the groups that lean into fear instead of run away from it:

  • People are open with their feelings, readily sharing when they are feeling afraid or frustrated or anxious or angry.
  • Nobody reads too much into this — hearing a colleague say she’s feeling afraid is just another piece of information, something to learn from, not run from
  • Teams and individuals learn from their fear, knowing that it asks them important questions like: Are we fully prepared for what we are about to do? Did we overlook anything? 
  • People know that fear is a natural part of doing new things.
  • Mistakes are always opportunities for learning and growth.
  • The organization supports people to take chances by making sure failure is acceptable. People are not penalized for trying and falling short. Learning from failure becomes the most important outcome, not assigning blame.
  • People take chances and know that it’s OK to fall short, so long as they learn from the experience so they don't make the same mistake twice.
  • There is little to none micro-managing because leaders trust others to do their best and they aren’t afraid of mistakes.

How many of these things do you see in your organization?