As a leader in your workplace it is important for the well-being and growth of your organization to create a psychologically safe space.
This psychologically safe workplace is the foundation of creating a learning culture where everyone grows and has the opportunity to increase on the job skills, interpersonal skills, and skills to enhance well-being. You must start with a foundation of a psychologically safe space in order to create well-being.
There are eight factors in creating a psychologically safe workplace:
1. Trust- To build the trust of others you must be a person who does what you say you’re going to do. Mean what you say and say what you mean. For this, you need a level of awareness of self in which you take full responsibility for your actions and words. No blame, no explanation, no excuse, and admit then apologize when you have made a mistake.
2. Compassion- Have and demonstrate compassion and a level of understanding for your fellow humans. If you don't know what's needed ask, if you don't understand, learn. Compassion starts with having acceptance and compassion for yourself.
3. Understanding- Seek to understand the deeper meaning, problem, or personality of another. Understand that that we are all human with different perceptions.
4. Deal with conflicts immediately- Address problems and conflicts before they have a chance to simmer bubble and boil. Learn if the conflict is interpersonal or systemic. If it’s systemic then address it as such. Do this in a respectful, healing way.
5. Be open for feedback- Becoming fully aware of oneself and your blocks and barriers to listening effectively is key for this. If you find yourself getting defensive notice this be aware of this and deal with this so that you can be open. Be willing and open to look at and address any shortcomings. Welcome the growth this provides. Recognize the courage it takes someone to speak up. Be grateful that they have taken the risk to share with you.
6. Implementation- If you say you’re going to fix a situation, do that. If you’re getting feedback on a situation and people are giving their time and energy to giving feedback, act on that feedback. First report back your findings and let people know your plan. What you will be addressing and when and then follow through.
7. Create a learning culture- Encourage and offer workshops, webinars and retreats. Foster open mindedness. Inclusivity, diversity and equity must be taught, healed and exemplified. This is most essential to creating a psychologically safe environment. You must lead the way in learning. Attend, be involved and share.
8. Support- Make sure your employees feel supported in all areas of their life, especially their workplace well-being.
If you want to create a workplace of well-being to start you in creating a psychologically safe workplace, download the workplace well-being creation kit found here.