Candor is gaining acceptance as the preferred term for positively engaging in disagreement and freely sharing ideas and opinions. The Cambridge Dictionary describes it as “the quality of being honest and telling the truth, especially about a difficult or embarrassing subject”. Honesty and truthfulness are very similar terms but they come with much more moral baggage. Someone may agree that they lack candor in a certain situation, but they will likely object to being called dishonest or untruthful. Candor suggests frankness or forthrightness. A willingness to come forward and offer an opinion without being asked.
Although they don’t use the word candor, Amazon frames challenge and disagreement as an obligation of its leaders. The company has published this belief in its leadership principles:
Have Backbone; Disagree and Commit: Leaders are obligated to respectfully challenge decisions when they disagree, even when doing so is uncomfortable or exhausting. Leaders have conviction and are tenacious. They do not compromise for the sake of social cohesion. Once a decision is determined, they commit wholly.
— Amazon Leadership Principles