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Safe Space, Brave Space

Last week I was mentioning the concept of psychological safety and I wanted to share another concept that’s closely related.


It’s the notion of brave space, which is a step further along than safe space. Assuming you do feel psychologically safe, assured that you won’t be embarrassed, rejected, or punished for speaking up, how do you leverage that into great teaming and collaboration.

You create a brave space, which is characterized by the following:

  • Controversy with civility – it’s okay to disagree but we must hold the other person’s self-esteem intact.

  • Owning intents and impacts – we take responsibility for what we intend and how it lands on the other person.

  • Challenge by choice – we allow others to engage to the level that is most comfortable for them.

  • Respect – we recognize the other person’s inherent rights as equal to our own.

Ultimately, the responsibility for brave space rests on everyone in the space. And it requires two things:

  1. That we work to make the space that allows others to be brave.

  2. That we are willing to step into that brave space ourselves.

If we can commit to doing both these two things, the power to create something beautiful together magnifies.


Try this ONE thing


Ask yourself what you are doing to create a brave space for others. And then ask yourself when you last stepped into that brave space.


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