E.J. Burton



There should be nothing controversial about everyday kindness.  Civility, on the other hand, has a tough time getting its foot in the door.  Civility is about behavior, especially behavior that reflects respect for others - considered as an eagerness to show regard for others.  However, civility can be blamed for sanding down the edges of a conversation - when in fact, civility makes room for a more truthful, productive exchange.  Interestingly, the new talk of civility troubles those across the political spectrum. For those on the right, civility is political correctness by a different name, while those on the left tend to see it as a way of silencing dissent.  Civility is simply courtesy in behavior and speech.  

Moving from the breakroom to the boardroom, we have decades of research proving how civility and inclusion boosts financial performance, innovation, market share, team collaboration, and more. This information has played a critical role in advancing many employee initiatives and paved ways for future ones. Rather, for some companies and executives, even the most compelling data seems to require additional rounds of convincing.

Civility in the workplace is not a crisis prevention strategy.  To fuel long-term commitment, businesses must believe civility promotion is mission-critical and is the right thing to do.  Most creative, high impact ideas are rooted in personal experience. The intellectual capital of a civil workforce encourages authentic engagement with clients, consumers, vendors, partners, potential and current workforce.

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