Beyond A Culture of Respect Is A Culture of Honour

A dictionary will tell you that honour is ultimately a level of respect; respecting standards, respecting people, respecting achievements.

But the dictionary falls short. And when we stop at respect, so can we. Because "respect" isn't enough.

Respect can be limited. I might respect Person B’s right to do "X" or think "Y". But in respecting Person B, it doesn’t follow that I should spend time with Person B; grow to understand Person B; help Person B; emotionally invest in Person B. Honouring Person B goes further than respecting them.

Respect is also one way. Honour is two way; it opens ourselves up in return. It allows Person B in to our world; it risks that Person B may affect our personal space; influence our worldview; or challenge our assumptions, assumptions that may have been long held and responsible for a host of our life decisions. A mutual exchange of honour gives Person B the permission to speak in to our situation.

To have a thriving culture, respect isn't enough. To have a thriving culture, you need a culture of honour. It will promote the humanity, identity and personality of each individual whilst nurturing the whole organisation. It will build people up and encourage them; deepen employee relationships; the sense of ownership and the openness to diversity, all of which will improve your teams' creativity and decision making. It will reap awards right across your systems.

Respect is a point of reference. Honour is a stage of relationship. And relationships, not references, are what you need for a thriving culture.