“Awkward conversations are as comfy as wearing socks with sandals”

The Power of a Collaborative Workplace: Why Everyone's Voice Matters

A few years back, I used to work in an office where I always dreaded meetings with our department lead. They had a way of overpowering every conversation, never letting anyone else get a word in edgewise. It felt like they believed their voice was the only one worth hearing. Whenever I tried to contribute, the department would cut me off mid-sentence, interrupting me before I could even finish a thought. I felt undervalued and disrespected, and it was clear that this behavior was stifling creativity and innovation within the team. Despite several attempts to address the issue, the department lead continued to dominate each meeting, making it difficult for us to achieve our goals and causing frustration among the team.

This continued until one day, the executive director said, “What do you suggest? ” I was shocked and honestly afraid to answer but something clicked and I knew this was my moment. As I spoke, the department lead tried to interrupt but the executive director stopped them before they could finish. “Let’s hear what she has to say.”

I will never forget the feeling of empowerment and confidence in that moment.

In the workplace, it is often the case that those who are the most vocal and assertive are perceived as being the most competent and effective leaders. However, this is not always the case. 

It’s important to recognize that individuals who shout or overpower a meeting are often overcompensating for their own insecurities. For example, they may feel that they need to be the center of attention in order to be valued or validated, or they may be uncomfortable with silence or introspection. However, this behavior can be counterproductive in the workplace and lead to missed opportunities and suboptimal outcomes.

On the other hand, quieter and more reserved employees may feel overlooked or undervalued in these situations. Therefore, it is important for managers and colleagues to recognize and value the contributions of these individuals and create a culture where everyone feels empowered to contribute their unique skills and perspectives.

The most influential leaders in the workplace are those who lead by example and focus on achieving results rather than drawing attention to themselves. These leaders are often quieter and more introspective, preferring to listen and observe before making decisions or taking action. They are strategic thinkers who focus on the big picture and inspire others to do the same.

In summary, The loudest in the room isn’t always the one who shines the brightest. Authentic leadership is not about being the most visible or vocal person in the room but rather about achieving results and inspiring others to do the same. By recognizing and valuing the contributions of introverted employees and fostering an inclusive and supportive work environment, organizations can harness the talents of all employees and achieve their full potential.

How much time do you dedicate towards a
continuous collaborative workplace? Let's chat!