Psychological Safety: What’s in it for Employees?
Once you are confident that you have established relationships, even with the people to whom you may not warm personally, next, you can use the psychologically safe spaces to do and to be a number of things:
- A challenging safe space where those difficult conversations that have to be held, (whether with individuals or teams) can be held properly, openly, and fruitfully. Maybe you initiate them, maybe someone else does. But the important thing is that they happen
- An inclusive safe space where the diversity that exists within the team or the differences that exist between individuals can be explored and transformed into inclusion. A space where conflict can be encouraged and addressed
- A collaborative safe space where pairs or groups can come together to share ideas, brainstorm, innovate, in a creative, supportive, uncritical way
- A learning safe space where people can develop new skills, new understanding. Perhaps the first learning experience can be around psychological safety
In conclusion, working within a psychological safe space enhances individual and team performance. Individuals are not afraid to make mistakes and thus are more likely to take risks and express their new ideas to their managers. Individuals feel safer within their teams and thus constructive criticism, collaborative work, and improved dialogue allows teams to reach improved results. Therefore, companies should encourage and enable managers to build psychologically safe work environments.
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