Courage in the workplace occurs when an individual consciously decides to do (or not do) something, despite them perceiving personal risks (such as losing their job or being excluded or rejected from the work group), because they believe it is the ‘right’ thing to do.
Courageous actions can lead to positive and negative consequences for the organization (and often both). For instance, whistle blowers are often seen in a negative way yet transformational leaders can bring about ongoing survival – although both individuals are courageous.
Courage is the application of ideas which are based on a set of over-riding values (we cannot have courageous thoughts!). It is more often observed in others than in ourselves (those who we think of as ‘courageous’ often believe they are simply ‘doing the right thing’).
Although research on workplace courage is very rare, the words and actions expressed are often found in studies on transformational leadership, change management, ethics and values, innovation, CSR and employee engagement (to name a few!).
I am undertaking research to better understand how and why employees act courageously and how organisations can positively harness such behaviour.
I am planning to write a practical book on the subject and are looking for real life examples of ‘workplace courage in action’.
This survey asks for examples of courageous behaviour that you have seen in others but, if on reflection you believe you have also been courageous, you are welcome to give your personal examples! Remember, such behaviour often results in both positive and negative consequences for both the individual and the organization and part of this research is to try to understand how organizations can positively harness these actions.
All material will remain anonymous (unless you want to provide me with a detailed case study) but the more background you can give the more relevant I can make it for my readers.
Having said that, if you do leave me with your contact details then I will send you a free whitepaper on courageous leadership.
If you want to contact me about this survey, your responses or any aspect of courageous leadership, my details are;
+44 (0) 7799 862 693