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PROULX: 'Radical Candour' can tackle harassment

Kim Scott believes in Radical Candour and that sometimes you need to bring humanity to the table, not professionalism. RADICAL CANDOUR

Kim Scott believes in Radical Candour and that sometimes you need to bring humanity to the table, not professionalism. RADICAL CANDOUR


"This is not unique to Hollywood ... In offices and businesses all over the world; in bars and restaurants and stores, people need to be seen as whole human beings." - Jane Fonda to CNN's Christiane Armanpour in an interview mid-October.

'Radical Candour' inspires less toxic workplaces

The reveal of former showbiz overlord Harvey Weinstein as monster boss has not only caused acute awareness of some working conditions in Hollywood but around the world. Life in all workplaces is now under the microscope.

It's time to create working environments in which people not only feel safe but thrive and do their best work, so that out from under the Weinstein rubble only good grows.

Eliminating the kinds of environments that allow behaviours like Weinstein's to fester and thrive is one immediate fix that is of primary concern to business leaders and some have turned to an illuminating movement called Radical Candour to help make positive change.

Radical Candour: Saying what you think at work while giving a damn about the person you are saying it to - asks everyone at work (buyin from all is a must) to stop being "professional" and, instead, bring their humanity to the office.

Imagine abandoning the universal edict most of us are taught at childhood: "If you haven't got anything nice to say, don't say anything."

The result? An office place that becomes a bullsh*t-free zone, where what thrives, according to co-founder Kim Scott, is everyone involved, each doing the greatest work they've ever done in their lives and forming the best relationships thus far in their careers.

Such is the power of well-intended honesty. There's definitely something to be said for Scott's movement: It's gained so much momentum it now includes a New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestselling book, podcast, app and advice column ( Scott, a former Apple and Google exec, studied work environments where she found the joy people took in their jobs to be almost tangible, and discovered they were always working in "I-give-a-damn" zones, where everyone always spoke their minds, as long as they "challenged directly" and "cared personally," the two "rules" of Radical Candour.

Use your power for good, not bitchy, in other words.

Radical Candour means laying off the typical passive aggressiveness, fake empathy, spared feelings, manipulative insincerity, and shuttle diplomacy dominant in today's workplace (the very ingredients that form an ideal breeding ground for continued toxic behaviours, including those Weinstein exerted for years.)

And the result when caring honesty is employed by all, for forty-plus hours a week? Whole human beings being whole human beings with one another - the kind that, as Jane Fonda rightly implored, we all need to be seen as, so to then begin to eliminate the abuse entitlement too many people have towards those working under them.

Of course, there's no single solution to a problem as complex as what the Weinstein saga is showing has been alive and well for so long. But cleansing the toxic environments in which it has been allowed to thrive by making them brutally frank places to work in, is an excellent first step; and, in today's fake-ass, plastic-facade world, more straight up honesty from all of us towards one another - because we care, not just to be mean - is an idea that's awfully hard to find fault with, regardless of the disgusting grotesquerie that inspired it into being.

The Shaun Proulx Show airs on SiriusXM Canada Talks channel 167. and