I have become a much more boring person. No one laughs at my jokes anymore and I leave happy hour when the sun is still out. My professional peers are also less fun now, but I do not believe that they are actually uninteresting people; it appears that conformity simply increases as you go up the career ladder. This is understandable – managers are obligated to be inclusive common denominators and instructed to recite the company line. However, the degree to which it happens feels counterproductive to me.

I’ve seen the same situation happen over and over again. In the name of professionalism and office politics, a talented leader becomes so constrained and fearful of doing the wrong thing that he becomes incapable of thinking independently. Someone who once inspired creative ideas reduces his own role to shuttling information between his boss and his direct reports, rendering himself colorless.

But what if we had organizations that fostered and encouraged risk-taking? What if we capitalized on our people for their unique experiences and ways of thinking?

As a leader, the best thing I can do for my team is to jettison uniformity and trust each individual’s intelligence and judgment. We should lead by example and share our opinions that challenge the status quo. In an ideal world, we would embrace the crazy and celebrate the hot takes; on the other side of monotony lies fun and creativity.