Psychological safety and why it matters.

Psychological safety and why it matters – Reset Your Org. Psychological safety is Google’s secret ingredient in their top performing teams. Not that teams can be cooked up like a gourmet dish.3 reasons why psychological safety matters more than ever

Psychological safety is a shared belief held by members of a team that the team is safe for interpersonal risk taking. Team members are safe to ask questions even if they seem like basic ones. All team members can safely speak up about their concerns and ideas.  It is the most important of Google’s 5 secret ingredients in their top performing teams – not that teams can be cooked up like a gourmet dish. We briefly explore three reasons why psychological safety matters more than ever.

Reason 1

Psychological safety is about mutual respect, transparency and the ability for all to speak up honestly within a team. The first reason why  Psychological safety is important is because as secret ingredients go, when removed from a gourmet dish it changes the flavour. In project-orientated, matrix managed companies, people come and go within teams. This is particularly true for temporary teams.

When people leave or even join, it changes the group dynamic. Are people the secret ingredients?  Yes and no.  The secret ingredient is the environment and the ways of working that if nurtured properly enables people to experience mutual respect, transparency and the ability to speak up honestly. Who nurtures the environment?  The people in it.  One cannot exist without the other.

You cannot depend on just one or two members in your team to speak up honestly. More than ever you need to know when there is a real issue with an idea or a decreasingly viable project itself. The environment and ways of working should encourage and enable all members of the team to speak up.

Reason 2

The second reason is that right now companies need to reinvent. They need their people to speak up. People need to feel safe in order to generate new ideas without fears of being ridiculed or look bad. When people stay silent, it is because the risk to self is too high.

Reason 3

The third reason is also critical. Research repeatedly shows that having psychological safety can save your company from self-destruction. Literally it averts your company from taking courses of action that result in the destruction of the whole company from top down.

We have a wealth of information and tips on increasing psychological safety for you. Go to our webinar, Psychological safety in Unsafe times.

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