Vulnerability in the workplace requires attention, authenticity, humility—in short, it’s hard. But by working to build a culture of vulnerability, your team will collaborate more easily. They’ll get better at giving and receiving feedback, and, ultimately, they’ll be more effective.
How can you create space for vulnerability at your company?
The process starts with giving your team permission to make mistakes. As a leader, that means setting an example and giving yourself permission to do the same. You must let go of ego and drop the fear of failure. It’s easy to get caught up in this idea that you have to be invincible and that you must never fail.
Here’s the truth: Your job isn’t to be perfect all the time. Your job is to bring your ideas to the table and to create a successful organization. And a successful company is nothing if not a series of mistakes that turned into opportunities. Give yourself and others permission to make mistakes, and then don’t be mean.
Vulnerability is not an excuse to express yourself in a way that hurts others. It’s about being your best self—which shouldn’t require being needlessly rude or destructive. Handle mistakes with support, not harsh judgment, and a space for vulnerability will grow.