Bad things happen when good people stay silent. And in some organizations, the pressure — implicit or explicit — to stay silent can be overwhelming. Sometimes an organization’s culture just doesn’t encourage people to raise difficult issues, either technical or ethical ones. >>>
Silence can damage future growth unless companies wrap their arms around this phenomenon and its root causes. Cultures of silence are commonly caused by three conditions:
- Leadership belief that they have the answers and their opinions matter most.
- Futility, which employees experience when they conclude their voice has no merit.
- Leadership behaviors perceived by employees as egregious or abusive, such as talking credit for one’s ideas or public ridicule.
(As one of the Editors wrote elsewhere: quite often knowing the right thing to do is easier than speaking up.)