As business owners, we all know the importance of boosting performance and increase the efficiency of our employees. We know that to do so, we need to bring out the best of each individuals as well as a team. However, employees won’t be able to give their best effort unless they feel safe in the workplace and hence the importance of creating a workplace environment that promotes psychological safety for all – where one can speak or act, be his or her-self without fearing of being judged, rejected or humiliated while sharing concerns and ideas. This creates both a positive environment as well as the positive state of mind, promoting and encouraging more creativity, which in turn makes working more productive and more efficient.
Here are 3 ways you can improve the psychological safety of your workplace:
Leading Empathetically. It is quite easily to fall into the blindspot’s trap of leading with ego as a leader. One of the most powerful way of building psychological safety in the workplace is to learn to lead empathetically. You will help to create trust within team when you demonstrate empathy instead of ego, when you assure them that you care about them, their feelings and needs and not just only results and performance. This kind of trust building is crucial for co-creating honest, vulnerable and empowering relationships between team and management. Thus be kind to your team and be attentive to their problems, concerns and ideas.
Encouraging Feedback & Inclusion. To create a positive workplace, starting from the business owner (being the leader) as role model to encourage open feedback. Getting feedback from your employees encourages them to voice their opinion and concerns, which improve employee satisfaction. This can also help you as a leader to know loopholes and gaps in the system, coming from the other perspectives. It is a true fact that not all employees are comfortable in giving feedback openly, hence it is really up to the leader to initiate and model it. By respecting the employees’ potential, unique needs and perspectives, we are encouraging the importance of inclusion, diversity and acceptance into the workplace environment. When a working environment is really working with employees of different backgrounds, skills, knowledge and experiences, that would means that there will be an increase in innovation and creativity. This benefits business in a long run in for business expansion.
Mistakes as Learning. You might hate to see mistakes being made in your workplace but one of the way to promote psychological safety in the workplace is to make room for mistakes. In fact, contrary to most auto-response of dreading mistakes being made, mistakes are actually important for the growth of the team. It’s a positive and powerful part of one’s learning process. As you lead the team, you need to let them know your stand – that it is okay to make mistakes as long as we are learning from them. There is no rebuking or belittling for their errors, instead let them take it as a learning lesson and that how this can help them to grow professionally!
As you have notice, promoting and building a psychologically safe atmosphere in workplace is important to boost employee morale and retain team members. Employees feel more productive and becoming more efficient when they feel safe at work. One of the way to kickstart this process is through Employee Assistance Program (EAP) which comes with psycho-educational training to empower leaders to be the role model and ambassador of psychological safety in the workplace.