What detoxifies a negative work environment? | Simon Sinek


When we talk about a trusting team or trusting
partners I think very often we forget that trust is not an instruction. Trust is a feeling. You cannot tell someone to trust you. No leader can just tell their company trust
me. It doesn’t work that way. Trust is a feeling. It’s a biological feeling that comes from
the environment we’re in. When we feel safe in our own environment,
when we feel that our leaders care about us as human beings and want to see us grow and
build our confidence in our skills, when we feel safe in our own companies, trust emerges. It’s what happens. When we do not feel save in our own companies,
when we feel that our leaders would soon as sacrifice us to save numbers rather than sacrifice
numbers to save us the human response to those conditions is cynicism, paranoia, mistrust
and self-interest. And so if we want to build trusting teams
we have to create environments. Leaders have to set an environment in which
the people feel safe amongst themselves and from us. There’s much discussion about this concept
of vulnerability at work. We have to be vulnerable we’re told. That doesn’t mean walking around crying. What vulnerability means is saying things
like I don’t know what I’m doing. It means like you put me in a job and I don’t
know how to do that job. It means raising your hand and saying I made
a mistake. These put us in a vulnerable position, especially
in a work world in which layoffs are used so casually that I feel like I’m on a short
list. And so we would rather not express any sense
of weakness whether it’s fear or doubt or mistakes that we’ve made or lack of skills. We just keep it to ourselves and too many
of us spend our days lying, hiding and faking. The irony is our attempt to present ourselves
as strong every day means the company itself will get weak. Because if no one is admitting mistakes, those
mistakes will compound. If people are doing jobs that they don’t
know how to do and they’re lying, hiding and faking that means the output will be weak. The irony is is when people hide their fallibility,
their humanity it actually makes the company weak. But when we create environments in which people
feel safe enough to say to their boss I need help or I don’t know what I’m doing or
I made a mistake. The amazing thing is that actually makes the
organization stronger. So the question is how do we if we do not
work in an environment that offers us that safe circle that we can express ourselves
thusly then the question is what are we supposed to do? Well it’s kind of like any human relationship. You don’t start on the first date telling
them all of your fears and anxieties and insecurities. That would be madness, right. You get to know somebody first. And then as you get to know them you take
a little risk and you share something small. And you see if they listen and they make you
feel understood and they make you feel heard. Or if they make you feel stupid or small. And if it feels safe you take another little
risk and another little risk and they take a risk. If you’re the only one doing it it doesn’t
work either. And this little sort of dance commences and
at some point, I’m not sure exactly when, you find yourself completely comfortable being
completely raw and completely yourself with this other human being who feels exactly the
same way as you do. And that’s exactly the same thing that we
can do at work which is we find those few people and we take little risks and you say
things like I’m not sure, are you? And they go no, not really. And you just express weakness to each other. It’s wonderful. And you’ll help each other and that’s
the point. It’s about relationships. It’s not about me finding strength. It’s about us expressing our fallibility
and our humanity together and together we will help each other. And together we will do whatever needs to
be done because we are better together.