Setting the Tone

Dec 11, 2023

During a recent coaching session, I witnessed a leader employ a crucial technique for creating a psychologically safe space: setting the tone. What struck me was the deliberate and effective manner in which she did this.

🕰 Before diving into the training, she took ample time (more than 10 minutes) to establish ground rules and lay out expectations for all participants. She did not rush through this phase but rather gave it the careful attention it deserved. It was a remarkable approach, and this was the first time I had witnessed it done so effectively.

There were several significant ground rules and takeaways but here are a few:

👉🏾 Collaboration for Inclusivity - She emphasized the need for all of us to collaborate in fostering an inclusive community. The responsibility does not rest on the shoulders of a few.

🌟Respect for Identities - We were reminded to respect each other's identities without making assumptions.

✋🏾Personal Responsibility - Participants were urged to take personal responsibility for their actions.

👉🏾Embracing Diversity - The value placed on equity, diversity, and inclusion was emphasized, along with an encouragement to embrace diverse perspectives.

⛔Zero Tolerance - The community unequivocally rejected racism and sexism.

👉🏾Addressing Unconscious Biases - It was made clear that addressing our unconscious biases is an individual responsibility, underlining that it is not someone else's job to educate us. Everyone was encouraged to do their own work first.

⭕ Learning from Each Other - We were reminded that we can learn valuable insights from one another.

💡 The leader elaborated on each of the ground rules and ensured that everyone understood the terminology specific to our community. This approach is truly brilliant in making each participant feel a genuine sense of belonging. When you are familiar with the rules and the language of a community, you are more likely to feel like an integral part of it and want to contribute.

💯 I want to be in and create environments where people genuinely feel a profound sense of belonging and safety.

✨ Exceptional leaders cultivate other exceptional leaders. Period.

Consider the tone you are setting and the type of leaders you are developing. It's in these DELIBERATE actions that we start creating spaces where everyone can thrive and contribute their best. I help my clients do this in my course, Purpose Driven Courses.

Speak truth to power, and as Iyanla Vanzant always says “call a thing a thing.”

Do you deliberately and consistently set the tone in the spaces you are in? What does this look like in your space?