Elevate Fearless Leadership: The Way and How We Lead

Fearless leadership requires intentionality and awareness in understanding the dynamics influencing a workplace climate of psychological safety. In Amy Edmondson’s groundbreaking book, ‘The Fearless Organization,’ a powerful self-assessment tool emerges as a guiding compass. This tool empowers leaders with three fundamental principles of Fearless Leadership: empowering what and how we lead by fostering an environment of psychological safety. This blog will explore the insights related to Amy’s work: Setting the Stage, Inviting Participation, and Responding Effectively

This self-assessment tool is designed to help leaders evaluate their behaviors and actions related to psychological safety.

1. Setting the Stage

What do We do?

Laying the groundwork and creating the right environment

How do You Do It?

  • Having Humilitybeing open-minded, humble, and aware of your limitations in different situations. Assume you don’t know what others think and feel. Assume good intentions. 
  • Framing the Work: clearly understanding what needs to be done. Setting goals, establishing boundaries, and finding purpose and meaning. 
  • Emphasizing Purpose: highlighting the reason behind what we’re doing to show its value. We feel more motivated and engaged when we understand why our work matters and how it contributes to a bigger goal.

2. Inviting Participation

What do We do?

Inviting Participation: 

This includes and empowers everyone to be part of the conversation and decision-making process.

How do You Do It?

  • Being Curious: asking open-ended questions and seeking diverse perspectives. Wonder vs. assume. Listen to understand. 
  • Practicing Active Inquiry: taking the initiative to ask good questions and seek information. 
  • Broadening and Deepening
    • What do others think? What leads you to believe so?
    • What are we missing? What’s the concern you have about that?
    • What other options might we consider? Can you provide an example?
    • How would our competitors approach this? Can you elaborate?
    • Who has a dissenting perspective? What do you think if we did X?
  • Implementing Procedures: organizing rules and plans that make things run smoothly.

3. Responding Effectively

What do We do?

Responding Effectively: Listening, understanding, and choosing the right words or actions to handle things well.

How We Do It?

  • Being Empathicperspective-taking, putting yourself in other’s shoes. Appreciate vulnerability in others. 
  • Communicating Appreciation: saying thank you and showing that you value someone’s work/efforts. 
  • Embracing a Failure Mindset: changing how we think about and react to mistakes. Implement a blameless reporting system as this fosters open and honest reporting of incidents, emphasizing problem-solving and improvement over assigning blame, creating a safer, transparent, and more productive work environment where employees can report without fear of reprisal.
  • Enforcing Rules: taking action when someone breaks the rules. 

Unlock Fearless Leadership: Navigate workplace dynamics with Amy Edmondson’s tool. Explore Setting the Stage, Inviting Participation, and Responding Effectively. Ready to elevate your leadership? Discover the transformative power with Executive Coaching!

Recommended Reading

How to Create a Psychological Safe Workplace by Becca Carnahan


Adapted from Edmondson, Amy. The Fearless Organization. Wiley 2018.

Right Kind of Wrong: The Science of Failing Well” by Amy C. Edmondson.

Meet Jodie, your Culture & Transformation Captain. With over twenty years helping people change, facilitating team discussions, building cultures, designing, implementing and teaching classes, your organization is in good hands.