You haven’t heard from me for a while. I live in Melbourne and you probably understand why I haven’t wanted to add to your inbox with more suggestions on “how to cope in a time of crisis”. I have however, been thinking deeply about the courage we all need to face new challenges right now.

I am in awe of the courage a team of mental health care professionals I have been working with has demonstrated. Boy do they need courage right now. The courage they demonstrate in their day to day interactions with clients was nothing however, when we had a look at the courage they needed to be real with each other. To face fully the lack of psychological safety driving them to well, frankly immature and uncharacteristic behaviour with each other.

We had the full gambit of obnoxious aggression, manipulative insincerity, even ruinous empathy, we did not however have what Kim Scott calls ‘radical candor’. When you care personally AND are prepared to challenge directly, you have compassion in your heart and candour in your words.

It takes courage to have a look at your part in things going wrong and when the Director leading this team owned her own ruinous empathy, and how that was making a mess of her interactions with her direct reports, the penny dropped. Her team were not only hating her insincerity, they weren’t trusting her to make the decisions needed to support them.

Having the courage to be candid and real on the job means having the ability to say ‘here’s what’s ok, and here’s what’s not; and these are the consequences if a line is crossed’. That line being the boundary. The important thing to remember is that you don’t have to be the boss to have boundaries. I’ll write more about boundaries in the coming weeks, but for now, here’s a link to 5 minutes with Brene Brown who has shown with her data that the most compassionate people are also the most boundaried people. My experience tells me that compassionate people’s boundaries are implicit in who they are; they might not define themselves as boundaried, but you don’t mess with them all the same.

One of the themes that’s emerging for me in my work as a trust expert and someone deeply committed to peace building within organisational settings is the kindness and compassion that emerges when we face up to what needs changing. Whether that’s having the difficult conversations, building resilience, stress management or forging a path to braver leadership; I’m here to help with a conversation any time.


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After more than 12 years of studying and working with the Enneagram in a business setting, I will be completing my accreditation as an iEQ9 facilitator this September. After many years of working with a broad array of assessment tools and processes, the Enneagram is a favourite for me as it has been such a useful guide on my personal journey of enquiry. It also has helped me in understanding what motivates people, how to rebuild relationships, resolve conflict and improve team dynamics. It doesn’t box, limit or categorise, as the system recognises that we are complex, unique and ever evolving. What does this mean for your business? There’s a growing number of Australian businesses getting results from this internationally recognised assessment. Click here if you want to know more.