• Iwona Wilson

Safety for Truth Speaking

Updated: Aug 18, 2021

Safety for truth speaking


"Create a psychologically safe environment for people to speak their truth and design processes where that truth speaking actually influences decisions. This is how I would describe my role as a facilitator, said Nick Preston, "Ordinary Meetings Don't Interest Me"


Why truth speaking is so important?

The number one human desire is to be taken seriously. When you dismiss, belittle, talk over, talk down, ignore or debate a person’s point of view without exhausting the desire to see and to understand, it is impossible to expect good results.

Everyone, especially people working in a group environment want to feel heard. When people experience being genuinely heard half of the conflict dies away, because the first desire is to be taken seriously.

As a facilitator, your role is to create an environment where every idea and every viewpoint is taken seriously, and everyone is feeling heard and seen.

Honesty and truth speaking start with the facilitator. The facilitator needs to demonstrate a certain kind of behaviors worth imitating by the group and this will transfer down to the sponsor and the people in the room and then wider community.


Is truth speaking able to reduce risk?


Yes provided there is an environment, culture and genuine interest that people can solve their own problems. If there is a culture where decisions are made before a facilitative process occurs, then often the organization makes incredible naïve assumptions, both about the nature of the problem and the solution, which can increase the risk profile of the organization.


Facilitation should not be used as a feel-good exercise.


Source: Ordinary Meetings Don't Interest Me. Creative Group Leadership, Book 1. What is Facilitation?


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