Public Interest

How can an organisation offer psychological safety at the workplace?

Psychological safety and security is essential for a healthy and productive workplace. When employees feel psychologically secure, they are more likely to share their ideas, take risks, and work collaboratively with their colleagues. 

Here are some ways that organizations can offer psychological safety at the workplace:

  • Encourage open communication: Organizations can promote psychological safety by fostering an atmosphere that encourages open communication. Employees should feel safe expressing their ideas and opinions without fear of reprisal or derision. Encouragement of open communication can also aid in fostering employee trust and collaboration.
  • Listen actively: Active listening is essential to establishing a psychologically secure workplace. Managers and team leaders should listen without interrupting or dismissing their employees' concerns, ideas, and feedback. Active listening can assist employees in feeling heard and valued, thereby enhancing their psychological safety.
  • Embrace failure: Organizations that view failure as a learning opportunity can establish a psychologically secure work environment. Employees are more likely to take risks and attempt new things if they believe they will not be punished for making mistakes. This can promote employee innovation and creativity, as well as a sense of psychological protection.
  • Create a culture of respect: It is the responsibility of organizations to work towards cultivating a culture of respect in which all employees are treated with respect and kindness at all times. This can be accomplished through encouraging constructive relationships and acting respectfully towards one another. Workers are more likely to sense psychological safety on the job when they feel appreciated by both their coworkers and their superiors.
  • Provide training and support: Through training and support, organizations can provide psychological stability for their employees. This can include communication skills, conflict resolution, and emotional intelligence training. Additionally, organizations can provide support and resources for mental health to help employees cope with stress, anxiety, and other difficulties.
  • Encourage feedback: One further method for producing a psychologically secure working environment is to actively encourage input from workers. This can be accomplished by the administration of consistent polls, participation in town hall meetings, and use of many other feedback tools. When employees are aware that their comments will be taken into consideration and that their perspectives are valued, they are more likely to feel psychologically comfortable in their workplace.
  • Address harassment and discrimination: Organizations must have zero tolerance for discrimination and harassment in the workplace. This can be achieved by establishing and enforcing clear policies on harassment and discrimination and by providing training on how to recognise and report such conduct. When employees know that their workplace is free of discrimination and harassment, they are more likely to feel psychologically secure.

In the workplace, organizations need to implement a policy of zero tolerance for any form of harassment or discrimination. This can be accomplished by establishing and strictly enforcing clear policies on harassment and discrimination, as well as by giving training on how to recognise and report inappropriate behavior in the workplace. When workers are aware that their place of employment does not tolerate harassment or discrimination, they are more likely to have a sense of psychological safety.