Psychological Safety – where to start?

Do you remember some people from your past years in your career who made you feel good and safe? Are there some people from your previous jobs or projects whom you think of and get this internal feeling of “blah not working with him/her ever again”? If there are some names coming to your mind straight away to answer both questions it means you have already experienced psychological safety at workplace or its lack.

Psychological Safety is a popular topic these days and can be answered by the following questions:

Can we take risks on this team without feeling insecure or embarassed?

Timothy R Clarke in his book “The Four Stages Of Psychological Safety” describes a model of four “stages” of psychological safety that teams can move through.

According to him, team members need to feel first:

  • Inclusion Safety
  • Learner Safety
  • Contrubutor Safety
  • Challenger Safety

To foster psychological safety on your team it is important to understand your team’s background, cultural DNA, and also their values. It’s proven that diverse teams with high psychological safety excel in innovation and agile environment. Would you like that for yourself and your team? Does your business need it?

If you think your team could benefit from , take in consideration following activities:

  • Simply discussing with your team the concept and what they need to feel safe at work and using the findings to improve the cohesion between the team members,
  • Team building event that includes all, think about those not drinking and also those with small kids (take in consideration timing and type of activity to accommodate the team to maximum and simply ask what would be convenient),
  • Investing in the DISC color method assessment for your team to understand your employees’ type of personalities, strengths and motivations.

Also I would love to hear what is your take on psychological safety. What did you experience yourself and how important is it for you? Let me know in comments.

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