In a recent post, Cindy outlined the shocking statistics on workplace silence that we learned in a recent webinar we co-hosted with VitalSmarts. Chase McMillan shared that most of us choose silence when faced with a potentially difficult conversation at work. While it might seem better in the moment to avoid a conversation that could be heated or uncomfortable, withholding our views from the discussion means that the team has less information to make good decisions; "The group IQ shrinks" as Chase put it.
In addition to this vast cost of silence, not speaking up about common workplace issues can have damaging effects on employee engagement, relationships, deadlines, budgets and culture - a hefty price tag for any company.
Here are the numbers VitalSmarts shared:
Hopefully, you're convinced that it is worth your while to create an environment where these hard conversations can happen effectively. To do this, you need tools and processes in place to help you identify crucial conversations that need to happen, and you need to provide your team with the right skills so that they are rewarded with positive outcomes when they do take the risk to speak up.
Using Rhythm dashboards and our Red-Yellow-Green process will help you identify potential problems and get back on track in a drama-free way. And, the visibility and alignment those dashboards provide will help eliminate the problem of "management chaos" that came up over and over again in the study. When your dashboards trigger the need for a difficult discussion, use Crucial Conversations skills like creating safety and communicating positive intent, to help you ensure that the conversation is productive and healthy.
Good luck navigating the workplace drama and reaping the benefits not only to your bottom line but also to your sanity!