Dare To Be Brave

Michelle Payne Dared to be Brave !  You Can too !

I was all set to write my blog on how the principles of “DARE” can revitalise our lives. And then the 2015 Melbourne Cup gave us the fearless Michelle Payne.   Michelle - the amazing jockey who did far more than win the race of the nation and be the 1st woman to do so, rewriting history.   She is also a champion because she was brave enough to call out the misogyny that underpins racing and sport for what it is. Her victory speech was enunciated with extraordinary DARE!

DARE is being - “ Direct, Authentic, Real & Engaging”


Michelle  had the courage to say that “doubters can get stuffed” and articulated that there is not enough equality apportioned to talented women in the racing industry. And further, the inference that potential female talent is rarely even able to get a fair go as a result of the intrinsic chauvinism in the sport.

I’m tipping (excuse the pun ) that there are a lot of men in the racing industry who silently have agreed with Michelles’ comments all along but didn’t have the bravery to speak up in the past or present to affect change.    Fear of industry and social retribution would have no doubt polarised them to remain inaudible.    

“Oppression and unfairness persists when good people  do and say nothing”

Having the courage to communicate under a DARE context will lay the foundations to enrich and positively influence all aspects of our professional and private lives.   Physical and psychological health will improve significantly which ultimately will have  positive flow-on economic and societal impact.  This  in addition will work to reduce the levels of stress, injuries, accidents, substance abuse, violence, workplace bullying, absenteeism, depression etc – the list is unending.

Taking the DARE approach in the workplace, home, sporting field, boardroom etc is not an easy road to take. The issues that play out daily in our Parliament firmly attest to that. Trepidation due to the threat of being exiled and reviled deviates people to remain compliant.  As humans we are drawn to “the pack” – we want to “fit in” and ultimately “be loved and accepted”.

Our culture encourages us to acquiesce to the norm”, “not to be  unique”, “extol  clichés”, “inane corporate speak”, “impersonal & dehumanising processes”, “not rocking the boat”, “silence on truths and beliefs”, “banal conversations” “subservience” and a pervasive reluctance to ask and answer the hard and important questions.

The adage  “for every 1 person who complains or offers a different viewpoint, another 20 or so feel and think the same but fear prevents them from putting their hand up”  resonates strongly.  I would be a millionaire if I collected $100 for every time I have heard “I’ve never had that feedback, no one has said that before”.

So how can DARE impact on the hiring and recruitment world ? And how can hiring managers and candidates learn and be encouraged to communicate with the fullness of being Direct, Authentic, Real & Engaging ?

In the workplace when HR actually gets around to conducting a proper Exit Interview, 9 times out of 10 the exiting staff member will NOT share their departure reasons with DARE.  Most  will just comment glibly “it was time to move on” or some other glaring untruth. Why ? Because they don’t want to rock the boat or leave under bad terms etc. But the staff member will feel this gnawing ache in their stomach as they know they haven’t been authentic and any problematic issues never properly addressed by HR and the company.

When jobseekers send their CV’s they too feel dis-empowered to represent themselves with DARE. Their CV’s are often jam-packed with cliches and banal content and they are so frightened to be authentic.  They want to follow “others” in how they write their CV’s and LinkedIn media and indeed really don’t know how to present as being unique and real.

Likewise, most Position Descriptions & Job advertisements are banal and lack any form of true insights into the role, company, culture etc. More-so (and I have seen 1000’s) they just do not accurately share what the role truly is nor the “mosaic of authenticity” (MOA).  The MOA is the reality of the role, not sugar coated and elevated to what it isn’t .

Also Key Selection Criteria’s also do not embrace DARE. Unrealistic expectations of what the ideal candidate should bring is so mis-aligned and not allotted a fair re-think. Laziness and following the “past”, the “norm” etc is the antithesis of reviewing candidates with DARE.

And worst of all are the candidates, recruiters, HR  and hiring companies who are deceptive to the “realities” of what they bring, the characters, the culture, the role etc. It ends up in a disastrous melting pot of frustration and disappointment.

So we have candidates sending CV’s without DARE to Job advertisements without DARE, HR and Key Selection criteria’s written without DARE, Recruiters who don’t have the courage to approach their clients with DARE, Candidates who don’t have the courage to call Recruiters, HR managers & Hiring Managers on their poor treatment and lack of respect etc.  And Hiring Managers who are disengaged with candidates and misaligned without DARE.

The overall hiring and recruiting process far too often ends poorly and/or disingenuously. All parties are imprisioned in this inauthentic and fear-based system, without real DARE communication. The negative aftermath is multi-layered financially, psychologically and physically.

So lets start TODAY and make some positive changes with DARE :

  • DARE to ask yourself – Who am I.
  • DARE to show Who you truly are.
  • DARE to ask the hard questions, then listen.
  • DARE to stand up with integrity when you see injustice
  • DARE to challenge the “status quo” for a better way
  • DARE to be truly engaging and caring
  • DARE to say NO when a job/company “doesn’t feel right”
  • DARE to have a “non clichéd” Unique Human Voiced CV
  • DARE to take a real look at a candidate which is a “little      different”
  • DARE to have a different and real conversation
  • DARE to write a PD which is “non clichéd”, but engaging and real
  • DARE to write a Job advert which isn’t hyperbole but is realistic
  • DARE to say YES to different opportunities and people
  • DARE to share your views with respect (knowing they may differ from      others)
  • DARE to say NO to companies, recruiters & HR who show      disrespect
  • DARE to say NO to a hiring processes which are unrealistic
  • DARE to make the “hard phone calls” (ie giving bad news)
  • DARE to be kind to a stranger – now that is real empowerment (how      often are you in a waiting line and thinking something nice about the      person in front of you – ie their shoes, dress – TELL them they are great–      be brave !)

     DARE to BE YOU !!!

Image courtesy of "Stuart Miles” at FreeDigitalPhotos.net