Psychological Safety In The Workplace and Expectations

Psychological Safety To Grow Your Business 

Have you ever heard of psychological safety? This is an important part of any workplace environment, especially when we are dealing with remote teams. It refers to a state where employees feel comfortable expressing themselves freely without fear of retribution or negative consequences. 

In this Bootstrappers podcast, Jeremy and Gwenn explore the benefits of psychological safety for your organization, like building creative and responsible teams that work on the business and not in the business.


What Is Psychological Safety?

Psychological safety It’s about creating an environment where ideas, questions, concerns, or mistakes can be openly discussed without any fear. It means employees feel comfortable and cared for. 

For remote teams, psychological safety is especially crucial. When team members are scattered across different locations, it’s easy for misunderstandings and communication gaps to arise. Psychological safety helps bridge these gaps by fostering an atmosphere of trust and open communication. 

Psychosocial safety in the workplace not only boosts team morale but also encourages innovative thinking and risk-taking, leading to improved problem-solving and productivity.

Listen to the full episode.

What Happens When Your Team Has No Psychological Security?

When psychological safety is absent in a team, the consequences can be noticeable in performance. Let’s take the infamous Wells Fargo case: In this instance, employees were pressured to meet unrealistic Key Performance Indicators (KPIs), which ultimately led to the creation of fake accounts and a massive public relations crisis.

Lack of psychological safety can lead to stress and anxiety among employees. According to research, a psychologically unsafe environment can result in decreased productivity, increased absenteeism, and higher turnover rates. 

Employees may feel abandoned, unsupported, and isolated, which can significantly lower morale and hinder their ability to perform. 

Moreover, creativity and innovation, which are vital for any organization’s growth and success, can also take a hit when employees are constantly living in fear of their managers or losing their jobs.  When employees are scared, they tend to avoid taking risks or sharing new ideas, stifling innovation and growth.


How To Maintain Psychological Safety

So, how do you build and maintain a safe space for your team and your overall organization? here are some of our key steps to foster a safe workplace: 

Follow Up with Your Employee; How Do They Feel?

Regular follow-ups with your employees are an essential part of maintaining psychological safety. It shows that you value their input and are committed to improving their performance. 

These follow-ups can also provide encouragement, reinforcement, and recognition, which can boost morale and productivity2.

Active Listening

Active listening involves showing genuine interest in what the other person is saying, asking insightful questions, and providing thoughtful responses. This communication style fosters trust and respect, making employees feel heard and valued.

Psychological Safety anequim

Trustworthy Environment

A trustworthy environment is one where employees feel comfortable coming to you with their work problems. Make sure to create a space where issues are addressed openly and everyone takes accountability, like a daily team meeting or regular one on ones.  This way, you will build a culture of trust.

This level of trust assures employees that their concerns will be addressed appropriately and without negative repercussions.

Positive Space

Maintaining a positive space is crucial for psychological safety. Negativity can breed fear and resentment, hindering collaboration and productivity. By promoting positivity, you cultivate an atmosphere where employees feel safe to express their ideas and opinions.

Open to Feedback

Lastly, Being open to feedback is a key component of psychological safety. When leaders show openness to receiving feedback, it encourages employees to voice their ideas and concerns. This not only promotes continuous improvement but also makes employees feel valued and safe.

By implementing these elements, you can foster an environment where trusts become the fule for employee productivity and satisfaction. 


Implementing Psychological Safety in a Digital Age

In addition to keeping up with tech trends like AI tools, it’s critical to pay attention to the emerging trends in workplace culture, particularly psychological safety. 

In the context of remote teams or teams that heavily rely on digital communication tools, psychological safety plays an even more significant role. It helps bridge communication gaps, encourages open dialogue, and fosters an atmosphere of trust.

Remember, a happier, safer team is often a more productive one. 

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