What is Caring Candor?


Caring Candor is being kind & authentic.

This framework is inspired by the Interpersonal Dynamics course at Stanford Graduate School of Business (aka ‘Touchy Feely’) which is voted the most popular elective during the MBA for a few decades- and is designed to help forge strong relationships with others which is crucial to becoming a more effective person (at work as a manager, coworker, and in our personal lives)..!

How does it work?

A simple framework: When you did x, I felt y

Here the idea is your ground your conversations in fact (i.e., observed behavior) (not stories):

x is what actually happened, not what you think the other person’s intention or point of view is (because you do not know that)

Stay on your side of the net (meaning only facts you know)

E.g.. -

You disrespected me / You were disrespectful in that meeting (these likely to trigger defensiveness in the other person)


When you said I did not send the report, I felt ineffective. (more factual and you stay on your side of the net)

Sharing your feelings:

Helps you connect on a human level with others. Emotions are magnets for people

How you listen to/receive a Caring Candor:

Hear what is being said as a contribution to you. Even if the person is incorrect in what they are saying, that is their reality. Now you know what their reality is and you can take ownership of that.

One effective way to listen to Caring Candor is:

Be grateful for the contribution - someone telling you what they think/what their reality is.

Say thank you authentically for the contribution.