Yesterday, I met a friend of mine for lunch who I haven't seen in quite some time. She started with a new company and has been adjusting to the new job and the new culture of the company. It's an unique culture -- some of it very good and not seen in many companies today. They hold people accountable and believe in letting their employees question decisions other employees make no matter their title.
Personally, I find that attitude somewhat refreshing. Yes, it may put some people on the defensive mode when answering a question, but it's good when people can articulate why they have done something as it opens a discussion to teach others or have others offer advice which may change the way you do things.
Over the years, I've worked for both start-ups and large corporations. The 'team' mentality has been shoved down my throat so far, I remember telling the CEO of a start-up I had screwed up and he corrected me and said "we screwed up, there is no 'I' in team". I politely corrected him and said "I'm sorry, I disagree. I believe in bettering the team, but in order to have our team be successful, I need to accept the accountability of the problem I created so we can solve the situation."
As the years went on, I witnessed companies where employees bought their clothes at the teflon store. Nothing ever stuck to them. No one ever created a problem, said the wrong thing, they just finger pointed. It's frustrating.
Maybe I also enjoy the philosophy of my friend's company because often people are given titles/positions they are not ready for. Don't get me wrong, I do believe every job has a learning curve. I believe in promoting within, but also believe people should be promoted because they are capable of handling the position and bring something to it. I guess I believe in people paying their dues.
A company where co-workers question your choices would easily weed out the employees who aren't qualified for the position. I recently asked someone a straight forward question about their position and what they were doing to improve a situation. I was looking for their solution to the problem and was told "we want to work smarter not harder".
Any seasoned professional would understand this is a given when creating a solution, and know this is not an answer and to NEVER include this phrasing when answering a direct question (although, I'm guessing you might include this phrasing if you're in politics).
I wonder how quickly this person would crumble at my friend's company? They'd probably be eaten alive.