A second principle I have found to be important as an academic leader is establishing a culture of safety. Early in my career, during a faculty discussion of why a resident was struggling to learn, one of my earliest mentors, Walter Ricci, commented that one of the biggest obstacles to learning is the fear of humiliation (Ricci W: personal communication). His words stopped me in my tracks. If he was correct, then centuries of hallowed medical teaching tradition would be called into question. Not long after this moment of truth, another mentor, Jerry Kay, published an article in JAMA describing medicine's time-honored—and misguided—use of humiliation as a teaching tool (3). He confirmed Dr. Ricci's assertion that good teachers beget good students by creating a learning environment where it is safe to ask a question that might expose the student's ignorance. Even a subtle, if unintended, gesture of invalidation in response to a trainee's work could provoke sufficient shame to cause the trainee to hesitate to explore again. Although Dr. Ricci's career began two decades before mine, he was espousing an additional concept that is even now somewhat on the cutting edge. It is the notion that a student's failure to learn may have something to do with the teacher and the learning environment. It is not the student so much in need of transformation as the teacher and the classroom. Given these two concepts, it is incumbent on the academic leader to ensure that learning environments are safe places and, of course, to lead by example in this regard.