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Called to Coach
Welcoming Psychological Safety in the Workplace
Called to Coach

Welcoming Psychological Safety in the Workplace

Webcast Details

  • What does "psychological safety" mean, and how does it differ from trust?
  • Is it realistic to expect organizations to be psychologically safe?
  • What can managers and teams do to foster psychological safety?

Gallup Called to Coach Webcast Series -- Season 10, Episode 32.

Below are audio and video plus a transcript of the conversation, including time stamps.

"Sometimes the word I use for psychological safety is 'benefit of the doubt.' ... You meet someone new, you can't say you really trust them, but you are giving them the benefit of the doubt. And that's what psychological safety is. ... Psychological safety you can practice immediately, even with people you don't know." All of us desire to be on a team where we feel psychologically safe. And many of us have likely been on one where that has not been the case. Leo Castillo, Managing Partner for Fearless Consulting, who is based in Manila, Philippines, joins the webcast to shatter psychological safety myths and to help managers and employees cultivate an environment of safety on their teams. Join us and learn how your workplace, and the workplaces in which you coach, can be more psychologically safe.

When you are psychologically safe, you feel you can be yourself. You can just say what you want to say. ... And that's when you feel you're really part of the team.

Leo Castillo, 7:54

There's another myth, that psychological safety means our team agrees all the time. And that's not true. ... A psychologically safe environment actually [can have] high conflict. The difference is the conflict is productive.

Leo Castillo, 27:18, 30:57

You can only make diverse teams work when there is safety. When there's no safety, ... according to our data, that's when diverse teams fail.

Leo Castillo, 33:06

Jim Collison 0:00
I am Jim Collison, and this is Gallup's Called to Coach, recorded on July 30, 2022.

Meet Our Guest on This Episode

Jim Collison 0:05
Called to Coach is a resource for those who want to help others discover and use their strengths. We have Gallup experts and independent strengths coaches share tactics, insights and strategies to help coaches maximize the talent of individuals, teams and organizations around the world. If you're listening live, we'd love to have you join us in our -- if you're listening off our live page, we'd love to have you join us in chat; link right above us there, take you to YouTube. Sign in; you can put your questions there. If you're listening after the fact, you can always send us your questions -- send us an email: Don't forget to subscribe on your favorite podcasting app or right there on YouTube, so you never miss an episode. Leo Castillo is my guest today. Leo is a Managing Partner for Fearless Consulting with more than 20 years' experience in leadership strategy, culture change and team development. His career started by helping companies be better through technology and IBM in the '90s and eventually to helping companies be better through their people. He's a Gallup-Certified Strengths Coach since 2017, and is a leading voice in psychology -- in psychological safety in the region. Leo, welcome to Called to Coach!

Leo Castillo 0:27
Hello, Jim, and thank you very much. I'm very glad to be here. I must say, you know, before the chat, I was feeling calm. But now that I'm here and I hear your intro, just suddenly the nerves show up.

Jim Collison 1:35
It's good; embrace them. Nerves are good; they make you sharp. While you're taking a few deep breaths, your Top 5 -- Your CliftonStrengths Top 5: Achiever, Learner, Command, Self-Assurance and Ideation. Give us a little background on you. I, certainly, I read your bio, but when other people read bios, most people check out. They'll listen to you. Give us a little bit of your background or the highlights of your background.

Leo Castillo 1:58
OK, so sure. So I mentioned I started in technology; that was back in IBM. I was a resource for ASEAN. I started from a technical field, but later, I was in charge of sales. And that's where I got my consulting chops. I got to learn how businesses work and how technology can help them. And just to give you an idea, this was back in the '90s. And in the '90s, I was there before there was Google. That's how old I am. And --

Jim Collison 2:28
Wait a minute! There was a time before Google? Is that what you're saying?

Leo Castillo 2:32
I was there. I remember we had to convince companies why you need computers in your business. And that sounds so silly now. And then somebody saw me and said, "Leo, you seem to be good at this. But it seems like you have a knack for working with people." And I said, "Yeah, this is what I used to do when I was in, in high school, in college." They said, "You know, why don't you do this? Why don't you work with us -- help, help companies through their culture." I didn't realize there was a career here. I just thought, you know, what I love to do was not something you can make money from. And so that's, that person brought me in. I started doing a lot of team-building sessions. Most of them are the outdoor kind where you had to climb trees. And you had to, you know, jump off the tree.

Jim Collison 3:17
Trust exercises, right?

Leo Castillo 3:19
Yes, trust exercises. Yeah. And back then, we were working with many, only the multinational companies had the budget for that. And then they said, and as they grew older, we grew older, they said, "Hey, can you help us with our leadership journey," and, or, you know, and that's when I started getting into this. So my last 20 years has been about culture. So as I've said, before, I helped companies with technology; now I help companies and organizations through their people. So most of my work is really corporate, not really personal. So I consider myself more of a consultant, but I also consider myself as a coach. But most of my work is really in consulting.

Jim Collison 3:55
This is a question I should have asked every single coach that I've ever interviewed over time. I don't know why it came to my head just today, especially early in this conversation. But for you, what's the real benefit of the CliftonStrengths framework in what you do? You know, like, what, what brought you to that? Again, I think we always assume that in a lot of the interviews that we do, but for you, how, what's the ben, what's the specific benefit for you?

Leo Castillo 4:22
OK, you know, I first learned about strengths when I was in living in Japan back in 2016. Back then, I think Gallup was trying to hire me, you know, and it didn't, you know, I think they realized I don't speak fluent Japanese; that didn't work out, but that's how I learned about strengths. And the more I saw it, the more, Oh my God, how can I have only discovered about this now? I can see how it can help companies be better. I can see how they can take care of their people better. And so when they came back to Manila, after I said, you know, the company I was involved in back then, "Let's go into strengths." And they said, "Are you sure? Because I heard that there are some that didn't have a good perception of it." And, "No, no, no. I think I know how to sell it. I think I know how we can use it." And we really started offering it to leadership teams.

Leo Castillo 5:10
So we found that strengths is great for leadership teams; they get to understand themselves better. And when they see the value, OK, I want to do this for the organization. And I think that's where we started building the strengths business. So for me, I think it's good for the companies we help with. But at the same time, I think it's also good, good for me personally, because I got to understand myself better. I got to work with others better. My wife also took it; we understand ourselves, each other better now -- oh, now I know why we fight. And so I think it's really just, strengths is really just a good way to understand how people are different, and how you can use what makes you different into something that makes you better. So that's, that's how I'd say the benefit of strengths is for me.

What Is Psychological Safety?

Jim Collison 5:51
Yeah, I love it. I love it. We're going to talk a little bit about psychological safety today. Why don't we -- and how strengths fits into that, and kind of into that. Let's talk about it from a definition. What does that mean? I've heard that term being thrown around a little bit over the last year or two. What does it mean, for folks who, who maybe not know what it is?

Leo Castillo 6:10
OK, so psychological safety became a big buzzword the last few years, and there are two voices that are very active right now. One is Amy Edmondson; the other is Timothy Clark. Amy Edmondson defines it as, you know, you are able to speak up without fear of being embarrassed. OK. Timothy Clark defines this as an environment of, of rewarded vulnerability. And I know when I say that, some people, Yeah, I get it. But when I run my sessions, I like to make it more down to earth. So this is how I describe it. The way I describe it is, and Jim, and maybe this has happened to you, you know, Has it ever happened that, you know, maybe you're in a group discussion, and they're gonna say, "Hey, we're gonna do this." And part of you says, "Shouldn't I say something?" And if, and I think we've all been there, I'm assuming that's happened to you before. If we feel that I shouldn't say something, then that means you do not feel safe. Because why? You feel that they may jump on you. They might say, you know, why did you say that? And they might question you.

Leo Castillo 7:25
When that happens, that's what I like to describe as we are, you are not safe; you do not feel safe in that team. And then there's the other way. If you're in a team, and then, you know, hey, you feel, I think, if I say something, it's OK. People will not jump on me. People will listen. They might not agree, but they will listen. And that's what I call "psychologically safe." And when I ask people to describe the feeling, they always say, the first one, it feels like you're controlled, you are blocked, you are afraid. But when you are psychologically safe, you feel you can be yourself. You can just say what you want to say. And because of that, because if you're coming from yourself, then that's when you can say what you really think. And that's when you feel you're really part of the team. So yeah, so if you ask me, psychologically, safety is when you feel that people are there for you. And they will not jump, jump at you.

Jim Collison 8:20
You, you asked me that question, you know: Have you ever felt that way? And, and lots of times, as we've been working through this, I, the answer's no. I always say what I want to say; I always -- well, but to be fair, I've been, I've been part of a privileged class that has been allowed -- like, think about it. I'm an American. I'm a male. I'm White. I'm 50. Like I've, I've lived in these areas where I haven't had to feel that way. And so I think, I think for me, that's come, been a huge understanding in the, over the last couple of years of that, to say, Well, of course, I feel that way. Because I haven't, I haven't been in those situations. But others definitely have. And so it's been, for me, it's been more of an understanding of that. It's hard to understand it when you haven't experienced it. That doesn't mean I can blow it off, right, I need to understand it as well.

Psychological Safety vs. Trust

Jim Collison 9:16
So it's been -- the last couple years and even the pandemic and all the things that have gone on here in the United States -- has been an eye-opening experience even for me, and realizing, well, yeah, it's, I may look at this and go, What are you guys talking about? But I also come from a point of privilege. So I have to be, I have to be, I have to be aware of that, to say, No, I don't know if I've had to be afraid to say things. Now I'm on a new team. And I've, you know, I was in a meeting yesterday; we had an all-day retreat with them, and I don't know them as well. And there were some moments you're kind of like -- can I, you know, can I say this? Should I say this? Right? But listen, that's minor compared to what, what some, what some others are feeling, right, in this area. What are some -- so let's just clear the air with that, because I think there may be some folks listening who are like, yeah, of course, Jim. I mean, look at this situation you're in, right. So let's clear the air -- while we're clearing the air, let's talk about some of the common myths behind this psychological -- what are some of the myths out there?

Leo Castillo 10:17
OK. So when I talk about psychological safety, people say, "Oh, it's trust," you know, and, you know, they've read Lencioni; they've looked at 5 Dysfunctions of a Team, and they say, "It's trust." And there is a big difference. And I actually like your example, because in your case, I have a feeling when we have the status, when we have the privilege, we feel comfortable, right? Or, and psychological safety is, it's actually a team construct. It's not a person. It's not a person; it's actually how is the team operating with each other? So OK, how, what is, what makes psychological safety different from trust? First, trust is one on one. It's a one on one. So, for example, I trust you maybe I trust Mika, maybe I trust Tia. And that talks about the one-on-one situation. But psychological safety talks about How do we interact with each other? And that's different. That's, that's a group construct, not a one-on-one construct.

Leo Castillo 11:15
Now, I remember, we've been, we've been trying to explain the difference between psychological safety and trust. And we do this in our workshops; we ask people to describe it. There was one answer there that I love. It actually came from a millennial. And this is what he said. We asked him to describe, What's the difference? He said, and I'm going to use it for you now. So normally, we ask, "Do you trust your mom?" Right? We asked some millennials, "Do you trust your mom?" And they will say, "Yes, I trust my mom." OK. "Do you tell your mom everything?" And there's a, "Oh, no!" And then I use a different example, you know, "Have you ever joined a party or a get-together where you feel you can say anything -- you, it feels safe, you know, when you say something?" They're gonna go, "Yeah." "Will you give them the keys to your house?" "No." All right. So what's the difference? Trust is deep. Trust is, is something that is created through many interactions. And I like, the way I like to describe trust is that you're giving the person a means to hurt you, and you know they will not use it. And so I think that's something that needs to happen over time. It doesn't happen overnight.

Leo Castillo 12:23
So when somebody says the first time they need to, "Don't you trust me?" "Yeah, no, because I just met you." You know, but psychological safety is different. Psychological safety is you're giving other people the benefit, that they're not going to say, that you're not going to jump on them, that they're not coming from something negative. So sometimes the word I use for psychological safety is "benefit of the doubt." And I think this has happened with us, Jim. Like, you know, you meet someone new, you can't say you really trust them, but you are giving them the benefit of the doubt. And that's what psychological safety is. Why is this important? Because trust takes time. Psychological safety you can practice immediately, even with people you don't know. In fact, there's even a belief, and I agree with, you can even have psychological safety with people that you don't like, you know, as long as you give them the benefit of the doubt. So that's, there's, that's a very big difference there.

Jim Collison 13:18
Leo, how does this idea of retaliation fit into that model, then? I've also heard it said that the absence of the fear of retaliation -- in other words, I'm going to say something, and I'm, I'm, I'm, you're not going to retaliate against me because of it. Does that, how does that fit in? Is that part of this?

Leo Castillo 13:37
Definitely. If you're gonna give me a, the, what's the opposite of psychological safety? The opposite is fear. If you're living in fear, if you're in this team, you feel afraid, you feel that you can't speak up, then you're not psychologically safe. So, and so what's the opposite of that? And that's why psychological safety is we're operating without fear. And that's why fearless. That's the reason for that. And I think "fearless" is, normally people think of the word "fearless" I'm being courageous. "Fearless" just means, you know, hey, we can talk without fear. So if you are in a situation where you feel there's retaliation, then yeah, that's not psychologically safe.

Safety vs. Willingness to Take a Risk

Jim Collison 14:17
I, when I, when I started doing the webcasts, I kind of did them -- I'm not, I mean, I asked for permission and some of those other kinds of things, but it was a real risk. Because I was, I was, I was afraid from kind of my career. Like, I thought, this is one of those things that, if it doesn't go well, it could end my career. Is that the same? Like, taking a risk in the job -- is that the same thing? I mean, I wasn't afraid there were people going after me; I was just afraid of the consequences. Is that, is that also part of the same thing or different?

Leo Castillo 14:48
I would say OK, so. OK, let me talk about taking a risk. There are some people who are naturally courageous. OK. And the people who are naturally courageous, whatever the risk is, they will do it. They're gonna, you know, I mean, I feel I'm kind of part of that. You know, you're, you're gonna jump off a bridge, you're gonna, I don't know, jump off a plane, that takes courage, right? And you're doing it because you're coming from your wealth of courage. Psychological safety is different. Psychological safety is the environment, the environment where you remove the fear. So in your case, so I don't know what happened in your case. Maybe, maybe you felt that the, that it was OK to ask. It was OK to take a risk. The environment seemed like it was open to that, and because of that, you took the risk. So that's, that's what we mean.

Leo Castillo 15:44
I like to think about, because, OK, when, when I talk about psychological safety, they say, "Oh, so people should be courageous. We need to teach courage." But teaching courage is like telling the plant, "Hey, plant, you need to grow better. You need to, you know, you need to grow even if there's no sun." But psychological safety is making, no, you water the, you water the soil, you make sure you fertilize it, you create the environment. That's psychological safety, because -- and the thing is, leaders, we can't make people courageous, because, you know, people have different strengths, different talents. But you can control the environment. You can make the environment safe, so that people don't even need courage. And that's, that's a difference.

Jim Collison 16:25
Are there some folks who are better at risk-taking than others? Is that what you're saying?

Leo Castillo 16:30
Oh, definitely, definitely -- that I would agree. And I think that's the old way of how companies used to work, right? If you are courageous, if you take risk, if you show up, then we will reward you, right. And so what happens? So companies only hear from the loudest people or the -- but, you know, as we're learning now, it's no longer the loudest people who have the best ideas. You know, by creating psychological safety, you include the people who may not have the privilege, who may not have the, that loud voice, who may not, you know, so you're creating space so everyone can be part of it. And that's why teams are more effective: More people are involved, not just the courageous ones.

Jim Collison 17:16
Yeah, maybe a true, a true inclusion, as we, as we've gotten more familiar with that word over the last couple of years, Ken asks this question: Do you find that people who do not speak up will then act up? If we're in situations where they're not allowed to speak up, do they just act up instead?

Leo Castillo 17:33
OK, so this is what happens when there's no safety. Because psych safety, a lot of people think it's just something that makes you feel good. First is that one thing we've learned is that people leave, especially the talented ones, they're the first to leave. Because hey, you, you hired me, I'm a good person, but you don't really listen to me. You tell me what to do, then why am I here? They're gonna move, they're gonna go away. And that's a risk we have. So in the case, so leaving the, so when the terms of acting up, they might leave, or they might just, you know, get back at you at a different way. OK, you're not gonna listen to me, then I'm going to sabotage you. And that's where, that's where you don't have, that's, that's where you have the toxic environment. Every definition of a toxic environment I've ever seen describes an environment where there's no safety. So yeah, so if people don't speak up, I agree, they will act up, or they will leave.

Addressing a Lack of Psychological Safety

Jim Collison 18:32
If you're in that kind of situation, where it's toxic, and it's not -- how, what kind of questions can you ask? Or what kind of things can you do to start detecting for that? I mean, certainly you feel it that way. Right? You feel it, like the team's not working. Right? And it feels bad. But how can you start getting, because the safety, just realizing it is part of, is, is part of the solution, but the other part is getting to it. How can we start digging in a little bit on those teams to get to the real crux of the problem, do you think?

Leo Castillo 19:07
OK, so your question is When teams are toxic, how do we get out of that? Is that is that -- ?

Jim Collison 19:13
Now how do we, what kind of, how can we start thinking -- and maybe this is a little bit into kind of the material here as we're thinking about this, but how can we start? What can we start doing to start troubleshooting that? Like, what kind of mindset can I put myself in to start saying, OK, this team isn't working well. What are some questions I can ask or things I can do or things I could start thinking about that will help me start diagnosing this of why? Because just, just saying it's not safe. OK, well, we got a bad team. How do we get to the, how do we get to the kernel of the issue?

Leo Castillo 19:47
All right. So OK, so I'm gonna use Timothy Clark's work here. The first thing is that is everyone included? You know, I think that's something to check. You know, are there pockets of people who are just talking to each other? Are people, are people put an arm's length away -- only some people are listened to, and some aren't? And that's, that's a very good starting point. Is everyone included? Because psychological safety starts with inclusion. Are we allowing to, because there are many ways to exclude, and I know the traditional is it's because of maybe color or age or gender. But there are other ways we exclude. I mean, do we exclude, Hey, you're new. So what do you know? And that's another way to exclude. So check first: Is everyone included? Is everybody's voice valued? And that's the first, that's the first part.

Leo Castillo 20:41
After that, the second is, When, when mistakes happen, how do people respond? Are people said, Hey, you know, if you try something, do they punish you? Or do they use it as an opportunity to see what we can do better? So that's the second question: How are people treated when things go wrong? OK. And then the third thing would be, you know, How are people, how are people showing up? How are people, how are people contributing? Is everybody contributing, or again, it's just the same people? And finally, how do people challenge? Do you see people challenging? When people challenge, is it listened to or is it attacked? So, so you want to check if there's, if people are included; you want to check if people are, are allowed to learn when there's problems; you want to check how people are contributing. And finally, you want to see how people are challenging. And that way you can see if the team is safe or not. That's actually the 4 stages of psych safety that Timothy Clark uses. So does that answer your question?

Jim Collison 21:50
Yeah, no, I, well, I'm, I'm in discovery mode. So like everybody else listening, I'm just in discovery mode. The, Lisa asks an interesting question as, as we, for the individual. She says, Sometimes impostor syndrome, right, the fear of being revealed as a fraud, even when you're not, can interfere with psychological safety. Have you seen that? How have you handled that when you have an individual who's struggling with that? Yeah. Talk a little bit about that. What, how do you, how do you think about that?

Leo Castillo 22:19
OK, so this is where I think strengths comes in, yeah? And because, you know, OK, first, I believe psychological safety, the leader has a big role, but it's not set to the leader. So in that case, I might use my Command. You know, I'll make sure, Hey, are people being listened to? Are, is there somebody here who wants to say something, and it's not being noticed? And maybe I'll highlight that. And so part of that, to Lisa's question is that, if you see that happening, if you see a teammate, that's happening to your teammate, then what can you do to give space for that person to show up? So in other words, that's so rather than telling the person to be courageous, you, you open the doors for them. You, you, and that's why it's the environment. You find a way so that they will feel safe to speak up. So that's my answer to that.

Clichés That Hinder Safety

Jim Collison 23:11
Yeah. Well, you know, you've said this a couple times: telling people to be courageous. Right. Or -- are there other equivalents to that statement, to that sentence? Like, you know, it's a cliché, right? Are there other clichés in the workplace that we find, we find ourselves repeating or saying, you know, it's time to, as an example, "It's time to put on the big boy pants"?

Leo Castillo 23:37
Yes. Yeah, that's, that's --

Jim Collison 23:39
Right. Things like that. Are there others out there? Are there common ones in the work that you're doing that you hear that, because, listen, some of us say those things. And I think it might be a good idea to just think through a little bit, like, are we doing this unintentionally sometimes?

Leo Castillo 23:55
OK, one thing I always tell leaders, if you want to create psych safety, you should stop saying this line -- what is this? "Don't give me problems. Give me solutions." Right? Because when that happens, then what happens? So they, what if they don't have a solution? What if they don't have the, so what happens, the problem keeps, you know, it keeps growing. So that's something we need to let go. We want to hear people's problems. Because that way we can help the person, we can work as a team for that problem. And so that's, that's a cliché: "Don't give me problems. Give me solutions."

Leo Castillo 24:30
The other is, another would be, "If you want to, if you want to show up, you gotta, you gotta, you gotta fight for it." And why is that? You know, I mean, know, as a team leader, you need to create the space for that, you know, you need to, you need to pause. You want people to oppose you, you know, you give them options. So, so that's, that's actually part of the best practices for psych safety: Give people time to challenge you; give people time to oppose you. Another cliché would be, "Hey, be a team player." You know, let's, you know, it's, no, you actually want to encourage people: Yeah, OK, so give me an opposing view. If you have a different idea, tell me. And in fact, let's take this time to oppose the idea so that we really see where we are. Because if you feel being a team player, you should agree then yeah, then basically you're saying, Yeah, stop talking. And that's, that's not how teams work now.

Jim Collison 25:36
Leo, we've, I was reading this HBR article about this. And they talked a little bit about some evolutionary pressures that we have, because, as humans, we, we learned to fight to be successful, right. And now we're in work situations, and we're oftentimes we're taking team situations, and they get very combative, because that's how -- you just reminded me of it, you know, it's like, hey, the, you know, the one who puts in the most hours or the one who's killing it, you know, we, we, at Gallup, we have a term, you know, you're a rock star. And there's nothing wrong with that, by the way, but then, sometimes that puts an inordinate amount of, you know, amount of pressure on someone. They had a successful moment.

Fostering Safety on Teams

Jim Collison 26:23
Now the bar is -- there's maybe another cliché -- now the bar is raised, right. And you're, and the pressure is, oh, now I need to stay in this mode. And I can't, I can't ever pull back. I had this successful moment. And I was punished with more work. Right, and not, right, you know, from that standpoint. So do you find, when we think of the combative nature of, of humans, we're fighting against ourselves, our own nature at times. How can we, how can we, how can we overcome that, when it's such an unnatural tendency to fight and flight? That's just, that's just natural. What are some, what are some strategies we can do, either individually or on teams, mostly probably on teams, to help? Cause it's gonna happen. So how do we, how do we get through some of that?

Leo Castillo 27:14
OK, so, first thing, I'm glad you brought this up, because there's another myth, that psychological safety means our team agrees all the time. And that's not true. What I found, found is that the more psychologically safe teams, they actually have more conflict. They have more conflict. They challenge each other more. They speak up more. I guess the difference is that in this kind of team, what happens is that the conflict is productive. There's a term for this, that there's intellectual friction, but there's no personal friction. And I think that's where the inclusion is important. That's where understanding this person is not coming from a bad space is important. And when he challenges me, it doesn't mean he's against me. And that's part of, that's an important, very important part of psychological safety. But that will not happen if the person does not feel included or is not recognized for being different.

Leo Castillo 28:12
And that's where, again, the strengths comes in. You know, this person may not, you know, this person is not a, maybe it's not combative, maybe it just has strong Belief. Maybe this person is not quiet, they just have high Intellection. You know, and understanding that the person is different and acknowledging that, then we can have more intellectual conflict rather than personal conflict.

Jim Collison 28:35
I found, when I first started working in Gallup, one of the things, because we talk about strengths all the time, we probably talk about it more than anybody else does, right? And, and individuals would, in, in a, in a tense moment would say, "I've just got to say, this is, this is running up against my Belief," or "This is running up against my Activator," or whatever. And it, it allowed for a conversation and then that did not make this personal. And one, the person owned it, right. They're like, "Hey, look, this is my, this, this situation, this is running up against my fill-in-the-blank, the theme, right, in owning those pieces.

Jim Collison 29:14
And then, and I think this is what I hear you saying is it's not making it personal. Right? It's, it's making it -- I don't know what the other term to use, though, that's not personal, but it allows for the safe space to be able to have this conversation, then for the other to say, "Oh, OK. I get it's your" -- this is actually a problem I have with my significant other sometimes -- my, my Adaptability. You know, she's high Discipline and Belief, and my Adaptability, and we just clash, right, in that. And sometimes we just gotta call it out for what it is, right, and then, and then be able to move forward. I don't know. Do you want to add anything?

Leo Castillo 29:50
No, no. We were just talking about -- that's perfect. You know, if, I don't know, my wife, I don't know if she's listening.

Jim Collison 29:58
Mine is for sure -- let's just be really clear about that. It's easy here in the United States. So she's in the other room listening for sure.

Leo Castillo 30:06
So I remember when we used to argue, I hated it. And she said, No, no, I need time for myself. I need a break. Like, no, we need to fight about it. We need to deal with it now. And then I realize it's her, she has high Intellection. And I real -- Oh, OK, all right. That's, that's why I gets so -- and I didn't realize, I wasn't respecting that. For me, I was interpreting it as she didn't want to engage. And that's a very bad perspective of how you see your relationship. And I think that's a good example. The strengths allows us to change how we see, how we work with each other. So we realize it's not an attack against us; it is just how they're coming across. And in a psychologically safe environment, that's so crucial to understand the person is not against you; they're just sharing their perspective. And, and yeah, so I'll go back to that. So a psychologically safe environment actually has high conflict. The difference is the conflict is productive.

Jim Collison 31:03
And it can be high conflict; it doesn't have to be high conflict.

Leo Castillo 31:06
It doesn't have to be, yes.

Courage vs. Safety

Jim Collison 31:07
To be, to be successful. I don't want managers out there doing this stuff on purpose. But, but, and if it's diverse -- from a strengths perspective, if it's diverse, and even from a, even from a cultural perspective, if it's diverse, you're gonna expect some conflict to be part of it. I, you know, I have this saying, "Where two or more are gathered, there is conflict." So, you know, you just, it's gonna happen in that setting. Ken has this comment. He said, By claiming a "safe space" when someone feels unsafe, wouldn't it be better to say you're building a "brave" space? Any thoughts on, on that?

Leo Castillo 31:45
OK, so I want to unpack this. So if you are trying to be brave in an unsafe space, then that's not psychologically safe. Then what you're doing is you're practicing courage. And that's a different construct. That's not, because psychological safety is the environment; it's not the person. So in that case, yes, you're trying to be brave, because there's no safety, because there is fear. When the environment has fear, then that's not safe. When there is no fear, then that's when it's a safe space.

Safety and Diverse Teams: Recipe for Success

Leo Castillo 32:18
And by the way, if you don't mind, Jim, I'll jump off to something you said earlier about diversity. Amy Edmondson in last month's WBECS, she actually talked about, she actually showed some data. She showed that the data of diversity and performance, and you know what it showed? It showed a downward line: The more diverse the theme, the lower their performance is. So she showed the trend line. But then, OK, but let's show a scatter. So she showed the scatter of the trend line. And they studied what makes it common for diverse teams, what makes, so there's a, so this is a trend line. So there are some that are going down, some are going up. The ones that are going up, the ones that are successful diversity is because they have psychological safety. And that's something that we found it's, there are many studies around it -- you can only make diverse teams work when there is safety. When there's no safety, well, at least, according to our data, that's when diverse teams fail.

Jim Collison 33:17
Lisa asks a good question, I think, around this. She says, Can -- hold on, I mean, I'm covering your face. There we go. She says, Can psychological safety ever really be achieved? I mean, really? Or are we just being idealistic on this?

Leo Castillo 33:32
OK. And my answer is yes. And why do I say that? You've been in a team where it's been safe. I think everyone if, I, earlier I talked about, we've probably been in a team where it's been unsafe, where we can't speak up. I think all of us have experienced that. But at some point in your life, you've experienced being part of a team that is safe. And if you remember, that was the team where you could be yourself, you can be vocal, you can challenge, and you don't think people will jump at you. I'll even bet, that's probably your most favorite theme of all time, when you've ever had a safe team.

Leo Castillo 34:06
Now, what I think Lisa's question is coming from, however, Can organizations be psychologically safe? All right. Because here's another thing: Psychological safety is a team construct; it is not a company construct. And that's actually another myth. Another myth is that, Hey, we want to do psychological safety for our organization. Let's do a campaign on psych safety. It doesn't work that way. The, it's a team construct; the intervention needs to be in a per-team level. So it's not, so why? You can be in the same company, you belong to different teams, you will experience safety differently. So like, maybe you're head of marketing. You know, with the executive team, you have a different level of safety. With the team that's reporting to you, it's a different level of safety. You belong to an ad hoc team, it's a different level of safety. It's a team construct. It's not an org construct. It's not a person construct. It's a team construct. So can it be at achieved in a team? Yes, because we've all been lucky, I'd like to think, all of us have been lucky to be part of a team that's safe. To have an organization that's completely safe, that's a nice aspiration, I would agree.

The Roles of Managers and Teams in a Changing Workplace

Jim Collison 35:12
Maybe a little bit of work associated with that. You had, you had put, in the Eventbrite invite, you had put this, this kind of question: Why do organizations, why are we shifting away or why are we shifting from high-performing leaders to high-performing teams? I think you kind of alluded to that right there. But can you talk a little bit more about that? You know, we, not, not to deemphasize the important role that the manager has, because it's very important. But what does that mean to you?

Leo Castillo 35:42
OK, well, OK, I actually run a lot of leadership sessions, where I combine psych safety with what I've learned from It's the Manager, right. OK, this is the old way of doing things. And I actually shared the historical model of this. The old way of doing things was that the leader was the boss, right? We just follow the boss. The boss is the smart guy, he's the -- that's why back then, we had the white-collar worker and blue-collar worker, not that long ago. And all we have to do is follow the boss, because the boss is a smart guy; he's the one who studied, he has a degree. We just follow him. And many companies have been successful using that model. That's called the command-and-control model. And the command-and-control model makes sense when the world is very predictable and things are going about, you know, if things are very routine.

Leo Castillo 36:28
Now we're living in a world of change, of, you know, things are changing very quickly. Some words people have used are VUCA, which is, you know, and that newer word some people are using are, is BANI. I don't know if you've heard of that. So we have, OK, Barney is, so from VUCA, BANI, the world is now Brittle, Brittle; it's now Anxious; it's now Nonlinear. And trying to remember the "I." OK, it's, OK. But the idea is that the world is changing very quickly. And the idea, the idea is that now what used to be routine before, it doesn't work anymore today. Back then, only the leader was the smartest guy; now we have smart guys everywhere. Education and knowledge and information is not just available to a select few, not like before; it's now available to everyone.

Leo Castillo 37:15
And second, we're now moving towards a more customer-centric business model. The people in the field probably understand the customer more than the boss does. Right? And so what does the leader need to do? He needs to let go that I'm the wisest person; I know everything; I need to involve the team. And that's why the boss needs to move into a coach. And I think this is all the principle behind the It's the Manager. So as, as the leader, don't be the person who says, "Hey, here's what we're going to do. Follow me." The role of the manager now, "OK, team, what do you think we should do?" And that's the change that's happening now.

Jim Collison 37:52
When you have managers or leaders who are being, so we talk about this, this new -- let me, hold on, let me switch this. We talk about this kind of new style of leading where everybody's making, everybody's helping make the decisions. But the managers are not being managed that way. How do we, how do we, they're still being held accountable to a command-and-control model. And they may be trying, right, to give their teams some autonomy. And they may be, but they themselves, How do we help executives? Because they're the managers of managers. How do we help executives see this? Right? Because I think this is where it needs to change, just to be transparent. Yeah.

Leo Castillo 38:36
OK. I'll answer that two ways. OK. So first, that's why, when we do a culture change program, where we want to, to have this idea where we want to create this inclusion, there's safety, we always start as much as possible with the executives. They need to see the value first. All right. There's a few we just launched a few weeks ago, and it's really about how, as executives, how can we enable people to do this? Because if it doesn't happen, the managers will find it harder. Right. OK. Now, having said that -- OK, so that's why I start with executives when you can -- having said that, I've run some sessions on psych safety. I work with the managers and not the executives. All the time, they tell me, "Leo, have our leaders taken this session? Do they understand what psych safety is?" Always, always.

Leo Castillo 39:23
So for some, I say, "Yes, you're lucky; we did it with your executives," and some, "No." OK. So what do you do? What if you believe in psych safety, but you don't think your executives are doing it? OK. The way I've always described it is that, you know how we are as parents? We can't change our parents, but we can change how we parent. So what I said is, if you can't, if you're not getting it from your leader, then do it for your team. Because guess what, you're looking up. The people under you are looking up at you. So because psych safety is a team construct, do it with your team, even if you're not getting it from above. It can be done. And the future of the organization is probably you; when you get up there, then make it part of the whole organization. So --

Jim Collison 40:07
Is, would that be the same advice for, for big teams where there, there may be subgroups where it's working and other groups where it's not? Lisa and I are kind of having this conversation in the chat room right now, you know, thinking about, you're never gonna get an entire organization. I mean, I think the goal is to get there. If you, if you take your eye off that goal, and you start, Well, it's OK. I mean, we can't get there, so a few teams -- at least I know, that's not what you mean. I know that's not what you mean. I do like the aspiration of getting there, though. But same, same advice for teams? You know, say I have a large team of 40, but they're, they're matrixed, because a lot of teams are now. So they're all matrixed with each other. And some things are working, and some aren't. What's the advice at the team level, then? It's, it's easy to give that advice to a manager, but how can you help teams through that when they may have a healthy dotted-line relationship to Team A, and a very unhealthy dotted-line relationship to Team B?

Leo Castillo 41:07
OK, so thank you. OK. And I'm glad we're talking about this as well. Because when I talked about team, psychological safety is a team construct, it doesn't mean division. It doesn't mean function. It means the actual team. And so that includes cross-functional teams. So what we've done is that we've actually encouraged teams to really have a conversation on psych safety, not just based on your reporting lines. Really, so if you're a cross-functional team, talk about, so how do we practice safety? Do we make sure everyone's included? Do we make sure, you know, when mistakes happen, we don't punish them? Do we ensure everyone's contributing? So do the intervention with your team. And again, when I say "team," I'm not talking function or department; have that intervention within your team. Now, if the manager is well-versed in it, he has the biggest impact. But here's the funny thing about psych -- you don't have to be the leader or the manager to influence it. You can be a member and can influence psych safety.

Jim Collison 42:01
Yeah, when we released the Manager Report, we had a lot of people saying, "Well, I'm not a manager." And I said, "You probably manage something." Like, right? Even in an org, and, you know, we would come up with like volunteer organizations, or you think, you know, of things you might do with your, your, with your kids, or, but seriously, if, if you're in a modern organization today that's matrixed, you're probably on a team, and you're the leader. No one said that. Like, no one gave you that role. But you're probably the leader in it and have that ability to influence those on the team -- if I understand what you're saying -- have that responsibility for the team to provide that psychological safety, to be aware of it and say, OK, hey, do people feel safe on this team? Even in a matrixed mode, I think that responsibility is still there, right? And maybe, can this be a team understanding as well? Can it be a team construct and that the team itself is watching for psychological safety and calling it out when it's not there? Is that possible?

A Safety Checklist

Leo Castillo 43:12
Yeah. So as part of the interventions we've had is we actually recommend, after a meeting, you talk about it. So did everyone feel included? You know, were there instances where someone was punished when you said something wrong or something different? Did everyone have an equal time to share or equal time to speak? And so that can be done. It's, it's something that the team can check all the time. You know, after every meeting, was everyone safe? And with -- in, you know, yeah.

Jim Collison 43:39
Leo, that, that's actually a checklist -- I don't know if I've ever seen that. And I'm sure it exists. But that'd be a great checklist. We have all kinds of checklists on how to run these kinds of meetings and what to do. We even had some strengths-based exercises that you could do to start a meeting, like OK, spend the first 5 minutes, do these kinds of things. A Focus on You is one of those things that we do at the beginning of meetings. But I've never thought about, like, Hey, how do we wrap up meetings? And how do we ask those psychological safe questions, safety questions like, "Hey, did everyone feel included?" Now, when, do you find, in your experience, if we asked, "Hey, does everyone feel included?" If they're not feeling safe, do you think they'll answer that question honestly?

Leo Castillo 44:25
So that's your indicator, right? That's, that's how you'll know that there is something that needs to be done there. So when people are hesitant, and they're not speaking up when you ask that question, then I think their reaction will speak more than whatever they're gonna say.

Jim Collison 44:39
Yeah. Lisa, Lisa says that checklist -- Tim, Tim Clark has that, has that list, so we can, we can pull that from him. I just was kind of thinking through, and I don't run very many meetings anymore that way, but what a great way to -- now we're super social at Gallup, so we end up having, you know, 10 minutes of meeting and then 25 minutes of getting to know each other. But, but, boy, that's kind of a, for me, that's a new thought of, like, Hey, let's check back around some quick questions, maybe two or three quick questions. Did everybody feel like they got to be heard in this? What are the other ones? So I, Was I heard? What else would I -- ?

Leo Castillo 45:19
OK. When, when someone makes a mistake, how did we handle it? Did we have equal time? Did everybody speak up around, you know, there is, yeah.

Jim Collison 45:28
I actually wrote those down. Now, OK, it's all, see, it's all coming together. I wrote those down, right. Everyone included? How are mistakes handled? People -- how are people showing up? And --

Leo Castillo 45:40
And if there's a fourth question --

Jim Collison 45:42
Did people challenge?

Leo Castillo 45:42
Did people challenge enough? Yeah. Did people challenge enough?

Understanding BANI and VUCA

Jim Collison 45:45
Yeah. Right on. See, look at this! See, I'm a learner in the midst of this, this conversation. No, it's super great. People always, you know, when, when they, when I talk about interviewing -- and I love to interview people -- they say, "How do you do that?" And I say, "I'm just curious." Like, I like, I want to learn things through this. And so it, that helps me in my, in my own interview skills. Lisa was helping us out a little bit. She had put --

Leo Castillo 46:10
Oh there, BANI, thank you!

Jim Collison 46:11
Yeah, yeah, Brittle, Anxious, Nonlinear, Incomprehensible. And then VUCA? Is that how -- VUCA? Volatile, Uncertain, Complex and Ambiguous. How do you use those two? Let's talk a little bit about what, what do these two, what do these two mean or how do they fit?

Leo Castillo 46:29
Sure. Before, we used to use VUCA, all the time, a way to describe the world: Volatile -- things are changing; Uncertain -- we don't know if what the future will hold; Complex -- there's many layers; Ambiguous -- we're not clear with cause and effect. And the old way of doing the command-and-control perspective, "Let's follow the boss" works. Because back then, the world was more predictable. When they do it in session, she'll remember, you know, our work ends at 5. When you're home, that's, that's it, you know. But now, things are happening too fast.

Jim Collison 47:05
By the way, we're saying that again, though. We're saying that again. Like people are like, I gotta get better wellbeing and a better work-life balance. And so it's, it's, we're in this, we are in this really weird transitional spot. Sorry to interrupt. Keep going.

Leo Castillo 47:19
No, no, yeah. And that's the reason why. And I think when, when leaders see that, they realize, yes, the old way doesn't work anymore, because things aren't predictable. And that's why you need teams. For BANI, BANI is kind of new; it came out this year. Well, actually, I think, last year, but a lot of people are talking about it. Brittle: Things get broken easily now. You know. There's a lot of failure points, right? Anxious: Well, people, you know, that's, I don't have to go on that side. Nonlinear: Cause and effects are not clear. Incomprehensible: Things just, you know, crazy things happen. And if I had to list all the crazy things that happened in the last year, I'm sure it will fill up our list.

Leo Castillo 48:01
So what's the idea? How do you deal with that? So because things are Brittle, you need to always have a plan B; there should always be a plan B. So you need to be ready, to be resilient, to have a plan B. Because people are Anxious, we need to create more awareness. And I think that's one of the benefits of the pandemic, that people are now seeing mental health and emotional health is important. Things are Nonlinear they are, I'm trying to learn. So it's, there's, there's Plan B, there's awareness. For N, trying to remember. For, when things are nonlinear, what you need to do, there's, because we have a B, A, N, I as well. So Plan B, awareness. The I is for the member's intuition. You know, we need to learn to use intelligence, intuition, use data and intuition at the same time. The N I'm trying to remember. But the idea here is that you can only do this if you get more people involved; it can't just be set on one person. And so the model of just the boss deciding everything doesn't work anymore. You want to get as many voices as you can into the conversation.

Jim Collison 49:02
We're a very, we're also building very entrepreneurial cultures inside organizations. I mean, I think Gallup's a good example of that, where everybody's their own, kind of their own boss. So when you think about going, from going to Boss to Coach, there's a lot of, there's a lot of self-coaching that kind of goes into that, that, and I think, you know, as, as I worked with Maika through Theme Thursday, I began to see, when I added, when I added my own strengths in, I began to see some trigger moments -- some moments, some things I would do when I was triggered for anxiety or when I was triggered because I was worrying about things. I wonder if I need to think through -- and I want your opinion on this -- I wonder if I need to start thinking through that, that "fight and flight," because oftentimes, I get a lot of that during the day.

Jim Collison 49:48
I get all kinds of incoming emails from the community, and people calling me, and they're angry for whatever reason, right? It's my job to help people get through problems, right. And sometimes I have a, I have a "fight" response right away. And I'm not to that point where I still catch myself before I, before I "flight" or before I send that email that I probably shouldn't have sent. I'm getting better. How can we, either individually or from a team perspective, how can we catch ourselves on this? And how can we make maybe strengths a part of that equation?

Leo Castillo 50:25
Well, first thing, when you were saying that, the first thought that comes to mind is that's why everybody needs a coach. You know, we all --

Jim Collison 50:33
I'm the one who's supposed to be saying those. You're not supposed to just be repeating all of the good stuff. No, good, you're good, you're good, Leo.

Leo Castillo 50:40
Well, we're all different. We all deal with it differently. And so sometimes we need the help of others to help us, you know, figure out how we can deal with others. I mean, I, for me, you know, because I was ask, I was asking myself the same question, How do I deal with that? And that's why I have a coach; I work with my coach to help me deal with that. And I think we find ways that work for me. I'm not sure it works for everybody. So yeah, that's one. So it's good if your manager is your coach; that makes your life a little easier. For the team, similarly, is allowing people to have coaching conversations, you know, and I guess this is where the Check-Ins are important. The Check-Ins shouldn't just be about work; it should really be, "So how are you really feeling today? What's going on for you?" And so that's how we can do as a team. And when I say coaching there, again, you don't need to be the manager; we can check, check in with each other. Yeah, make that part of your system, make it part of your conversation. And that's, again, going back to psych safety, that's how you make it safe. You allow people to share whatever they're feeling, and you want to honor whatever your feelings, OK. It's part of inclusion.

Jim Collison 51:46
So I might be the luckiest guy in the world cause I, you know, I have 12,000 coaches that want to give me advice. Actually, not such a bad, that's not so bad. Because I've, I've actually really grown -- in this role that I'm in, I've really grown as a human, having access to, in, in both working and friend relationships, with some really bright, helpful, caring people like you, who, who I can have these conversations with and feel safe, you know, in them. These relationships or these, these conversations we had always feel safe.

A Safety Success Story

Jim Collison 52:27
So again, I probably come in a role where I come from a point of privilege, and I've got 12,000 really great team members that I work with. I recognize, not everybody has that same, has that same relationship. And I joke, and I jest, but I've still got some work to do, kind of in that area. Can you talk, we've got, Leo, we've got a few minutes left. And I'd love to, as you think about maybe one of your best success stories in this, and then I want to ask you a little advice on the way out -- what kind of advice would you give to coaches? But a little success story and then some advice.

Leo Castillo 53:04
OK, so one of the companies we work with, and I think it's OK I can say the name, because we won an award for this, is for Sun Life. Sun Life is a financial company. They're based in Canada. And Sun Life Philippines, we've been working with them for many years. And they said, they, you know, and we always help them in their 5-year plan, what's the culture that's necessary for that? And then when they're looking for the next 5 years, they said, Hey, you know, we became No. 1 at Sun Life because we had people who are good in following, good in Executing. They realized, we're not going to be successful in that the next few years. So we need people who are willing to challenge, people to question. And they asked, OK, so what culture do we need to do for that?

Leo Castillo 53:50
So we didn't sell psych safety; we are selling, you know, we're, we're helping them with their problem of innovation and culture. And we said, OK, maybe for that, you need to create this culture -- culture where people are free to speak up and free to challenge. And that was our entry point to psych safety. We did it with the leaders first. OK. And when we did it with the leaders, we made sure we measured it. So that, you know, because you can measure psych safety; you can measure psych safety. The leaders liked it so much, we brought it down to the other leaders. And then they liked it so much, let's bring it to the rest of the organization. So our last 3 years has really been working with, working with people from all over the country to discuss and talk about psych safety.

Leo Castillo 54:35
One thing we did well was, and we measured, we measured all the major teams to do that. And so we saw how psych safety changed; a year later, the metrics went up. The CEO now keeps talking about it now: Psychological safety is something we believe in. We've seen it with the people, when we talk to them, that they really see it's being practiced. Now one thing we did do, however, is because, because the workforce are mostly people who know how to follow, we kind of need to educate them on how to assert themselves. So we had a matching program, it's called "The Power of Voice." So you have psych safety being created by the leaders, and we had The Power of Voice to help people to feel comfortable to speak up. You know, because maybe when they were hiring, they weren't hiring people who were good at speaking up, so they need to learn the skills to do that.

Leo Castillo 55:20
And that's one that won us an award. This was with the company ... management strategies. The award was won because it really created a difference for the organization. So that's one. I have, you know, and what I've found is I don't normally sell psych safety when I talk to clients; I really check what kind of culture they need, and it just so happens, psychological safety is a good construct for that. And whenever I can, I put in strengths, because strengths helps us understand why we're different. And so it's a good combination -- both strengths and psych safety.

Jim Collison 55:53
Ken asks the question, kind of related to that. He says, When, when, when there are equity, diversity, inclusion issues in the workplace, how and when do you introduce CliftonStrengths? So thinking, if you're working with an organization, and they got some of the other things they need to work on, how would you, or what are your thoughts around that?

Leo Castillo 56:13
OK, so in terms of diversity, and OK, there's one thing I think the Philippines has an advantage of: We're very, we're very good with diversity. I think we have probably one of the highest percentages of women CEOs in the world. We've had a few women presidents. So because of that, it's, and I think Filipinos are known for being good working with different nationalities; I think that works out. So it's not as much a problem here. Now, having said that, I've done a lot of work with ASEAN. OK. And ASEAN, they really see it. Because I think there's a more mix of cultures. OK, I find that strengths is great for, for inclusion; I find it's great for inclusion. Because at the end of the day, it really talks about why are people excluded? And people are excluded because they're different, for whatever reason. And CliftonStrengths gives us a framework that being different is a good thing. Being different is something special. And that's why normally, when I want to do work with diversity and inclusion, I always try to include strengths as a very early intervention, OK, for that. So yeah.

Jim Collison 57:31
Lisa asks this question. I'm not sure I completely understand, but I'm gonna throw that up. She says, This is great. A sales question: You're working on a 5-year plan, and what culture do you want to support it?

Leo Castillo 57:43
Yeah, I think she was reacting to when I was talking about the company we're working with. Yeah. For me, and that's, that's where I kind of like going, my current company is called "Fearless." We, I, before, because I think I've been working in culture for many years, we're working on strategy as well. And I think that's where it merges. Now, I think the link between strategy and culture is much, much more stronger now. You know, and when I ask people, when, when a company asks me, "Leo, we want to do culture change," I first ask, "OK, what is your strategy?" Because I don't want to just do culture for culture's sake; there needs to be a reason for it that, needs to be a link there; if not, it's not gonna work. So yeah, I agree with you, Lisa. That's a great question to ask: What's your plan for the next 5 years? And what culture do you need to support it?

Jim Collison 58:25
Leo, you think, in the years you've been working with CliftonStrengths, and you've got the ear of, you know, a couple thousand coaches that listen to Called to Coach. In the last minute or two that we have, any advice you'd give them? You, maybe even little beyond what we talked about with psychological safety, but any thoughts to them? How would you encourage them? Maybe that's a good way to say it. How would you encourage those coaches?

Leo Castillo 58:46
OK, maybe I'll answer it the way I was able to introduce strengths, at least here with the companies I work with. If you're in the corporate space, if you're in the corporate space, because I know this is going to be different if you're in the personal space. If you're in the corporate space, I always start with, What is the business case for strengths? I linked it to engagement, I linked it to managers, I linked it to impact, I linked it to numbers. When I do that, for me, to be honest, it's an easy sell when I work with leaders.

Leo Castillo 59:20
And I think a common mistake by some is that when you're working with corporate, you talk about strengths from a personal level. Not that it's a bad thing, but that's not what they're there for, you know, they're, they're there, I want to make my business better. I want to make my company better. So in that case, it helps that we talk their language. And I find when we do that, it's an easy sell. And then suddenly, they get their buy-in, and we're doing it for the rest of the org. So that's one. Understand if you're working with business, speaking the language of business. That's, that's one. Now if you're working in the personal space, I guess, you know, just like any marketing or salesperson will tell you, you know, understand what they need, and then, you know, see how strengths can help them for their need. So maybe that's, that's a big-picture perspective.

Jim Collison 1:00:09
I love it. I love it. Some good advice. I took, I took some of your advice; asked the chat room, want to make sure everybody was heard, and everybody was included, chat room, in the conversation. I hope that you felt like, you know, it is one of those, it is a small exercise in inclusion, as we've got all these comments coming in. I don't always pick them all. But, you know, it's like, sometimes I have to be efficient and whatever, but it's, it is, Leo, it's such a good reminder.

Jim Collison 1:00:28
I'm going to take those four, I'm going to write them down, and I'm going to stick them somewhere, put them on my notebook, whatever. And I think what I'm going to start doing is think through them. Before I reply to an email, this is probably the easiest way for me to implement this idea of providing psychological safety for those in the coaching community that I'm working with. I find that's my responsibility now; you've given it to me as my responsibility to think through in my response, Am I, Did I listen? How am I showing up in this? Right? How did they show up, you know, in that?

Jim Collison 1:01:21
Am I, cause sometimes, you know, we can do this in support; we can be condemning. Like, Hey, it went to your spam box; you should have been smart enough, right, could you turn it on and turn it off? Move, you know. And so I think there's some opportunities, even in those little interactions, to provide these, these, you know, these ideas to help create even these microrelationships that, between each other, because a team is two, right? So can I provide psychological safety to those I'm working with, even if it's a short-term relationship, helping them get logged into Gallup Access or helping them find resources or helping them on Facebook?

Jim Collison 1:02:13
So if you're listening, you guys can hold me all accountable to this. I'm going to begin to think through this. And Leo, thanks for spending some time with us. We're getting, and, and Lisa, Did people challenge enough? So the, appreciate you. And I appreciate you doing this on a Saturday morning. I, for the folks who are listening to the podcast, it's Friday night in the U.S.; it's Saturday morning where you are. Where are you? Where are you calling in from?

Leo Castillo 1:02:42
In Manila. I'm calling in from Manila, Philippines, yeah.

Jim Collison 1:02:43
You're in Manila. So, so 13 hours, I think, is what we figured out. And so thanks for doing that at this, at this time. It's been kind of fun. Big thanks to the chat room as well, for coming out on a Friday night. Met a lot of folks from the West Coast and folks from all over, and lots of great, lots of great conversations out there, and lots of thanks as well. And so we thank you for doing that. Leo, hang on tight for me one second. Let me, let me wrap this up, and then we'll close it. I want to remind everyone to take full advantage of all the resources we have available now in Gallup Access. Head out to Log in, hit the Resources menu upper left, drop that down, hit the Resources tab and then search for anything. A lot of stuff is there. Google, let Google be your friend too. There's, we have a lot of resources just available at If you want coaching or master coaching or you want, you want to become a Gallup-Certified Strengths Coach just like Leo is, you can send us an email: We'll send you some info. Don't forget to sign up on Eventbrite: Follow us there, and you get a notification whenever we do episodes like this. We'll be a little light going into the fall, but I got some more stuff coming up this winter that you'll want to be a part -- well, winter for us anyways, in the Northern Hemisphere. You know how inclusive or we're not inclusive in the Northern Hemisphere? We're always saying "summer" and "winter" and "spring" and "fall." None of those -- down south, it's the exact opposite. It's, it's winter in Brazil. It's winter in Australia.

Leo Castillo 1:04:10
And we don't have winter here.

Jim Collison 1:04:12
No, and you don't have, you don't ever have winter. So those are not inclusive. By the way, the seasons are not inclusive. I'm just gonna call it for that. You can find us on Facebook: And we want to thank you for joining us today. Thanks for coming out, especially for the live audience. Appreciate it. We'll be back next time. With that, we'll say, Goodbye, everybody.

Leo Castillo's Top 5 CliftonStrengths are Achiever, Learner, Command, Self-Assurance and Ideation.

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