Leaders should build teams with people who have a proven willingness to speak their mind.
I love this quote from the latest On Leadership at the Washington Post: “If you have a yes-man working for you, one of you is redundant” (Avis CEO Barry Rand).
Decision making for organizations operating in complex and chaotic conditions emphasizes the importance of upward communication and dissenting opinions to arrive at sound strategic solutions. Most times the unwillingness to speak up is to blame for a failed objective; sometimes those failed objectives cause injury or death. It’s easy to believe we are leaders when everyone around us agrees with everything we say. Because a diverse set of opinions, and sometimes disagreement, are crucial for good decision making, we need strong leaders and followers who are willing to speak up, and then we need to listen to them.
How do we build teams with open communication lines in all directions? I’ll bet TRUST would help.
Read Saying no to ‘yes-men from’ On Leadership here.