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Psychological Safety at Workplace

Once upon a time, there were two leading organizations, Safe City and Insecure Hub.

Employees of Safe City felt at ease while working in the organization. The organization encouraged all of its employees to freely voice their opinions, embraced diverse ideas, and valued every input.

Employees were able to openly brainstorm ideas without the fear of their ideas being shot down, embarrassed, or humiliated. They felt safe expressing their concerns and taking responsibility for their actions even when things did not go as planned.

The nurturing and safe working environment created a sense of belongingness and trust among team members and led to high morale, low turnover, and increased productivity.

On the other hand, there was a stark contrast to how Insecure Hub functioned. Employees there constantly felt on edge and feared thinking out loud due to criticism. This led to decreased productivity and employee engagement, increased absenteeism and turnover. It also had a negative impact on employee well-being including stress and burnout.

Now, let us take a moment, step back, and ponder - which organization would you want to work in?

Safe City, right?

When you compare these two organizations you observe that Safe City embraces a culture of psychological safety, based on mutual trust, respect, and open communication, leading to employee satisfaction, a boost in creativity, and long-term organizational success.

How about we zoom in a little and try to understand what Safe City did differently that created a psychologically safe workplace?

  • Open Communication: They encouraged open and honest communication at all levels of the organization. Regular meetings, evaluations, and one-on-one check-ins with everyone facilitated communication.

  • Embracing Diverse Perspectives: They embraced diverse opinions and regularly sought inputs and feedback from employees. Teams were encouraged to bring unique perspectives to the table.

  • Empowerment & Autonomy: Employees were trusted to make decisions within their roles, which empowered them and increased their sense of responsibility.

  • Supportive Environment: Besides encouraging employees to make their own decisions, they were assured that the team had their back when something went wrong. Challenging situations were treated as opportunities to learn rather than blaming the employees.

  • Recognition & Appreciation: They regularly recognized and appreciated their employees' efforts and achievements. Acknowledging their efforts and good work boosted their morale.

This story serves as a reminder that organizations that prioritize psychological safety create a nurturing and empowering environment, where individuals can thrive. Psychological safety leads to a culture of trust, collaboration, and innovation, ultimately contributing to the company's success. Engage with your employees to understand their needs and what will bring in a sense of safety for them and take a step forward towards making your workplace a psychologically safe workplace!

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