The notion that a team or organisation should have “a shared belief that the team is safe for interpersonal risk taking” (Edmondson,1999) appears quite simple, but why is it so important, and how do we practically build and maintain it?
Being able to, respectfully and safely, share ideas, speak up, challenge issues, and show vulnerability is a critical part of a high performing workplace culture. It underpins creativity, innovation, safety and workplace mental health. In fact, in a 2015 study, Google found that psychological safety is the most important attribute of a successful team.
Working within a psychologically safe workplace means that employees feel they are "able to show and employ their self without fear of negative consequences of self-image, status or career" (Kahn 1990). In these contexts, people can take interpersonal and professional risks, be authentic, and build trusting and robust interpersonal relationships.
A focus on building psychologically safe workplaces signifies a critical shift in thought leadership on the causes of poor performance, interpersonal discord and workplace stress.
Building psychological safety goes beyond just targeting individual resilience factors or mental health awareness; it addresses organizational culture, team climate, supportive leadership, and interpersonal behaviour to enable people to flourish.
While the value of psychological safety is clear, there is currently a gap in knowledge of how to build it within organizations and teams. To fill this gap, we draw on the field of behavioural ethics.
Incorporating insights from behavioural psychology, neuroscience, and evolutionary biology, behavioural ethics reveals the various blindspots and biases that we all suffer from, and therefore provides a critical tool for understanding one’s own and others behaviour, reducing judgement, and enhancing effective communication.
This means that people are equipped to respond to interpersonal, cultural, and leadership issues before they get out of hand and lead to job stress.
The core aim is to build flourishing interpersonal and team environments. Our programs draw on the latest behavioural science insights and are delivered by highly qualified and experienced practitioners.Our Services