Psychological Safety in the workplace

Psychological safety in the workplace

Support psychological safety at work and discover the benefits it can bring for your business.

Throughout history, there has been an emphasis on removing physical dangers from business premises. But psychological safety in the workplace is just as critical.

Psychological safety is a shared belief within a team that its members will reward vulnerability. This movement is centered around creating an environment where employees feel comfortable asking questions, presenting ideas and challenging custom without fear of ridicule or reprimand. In return, organisations gain greater innovation and performance.

As a business leader, you can strengthen psychological safety by creating the right culture within your workplace. Not sure where to start? Book an obligation-free consultation with The Mental Health Coach to chat through your options, including tailored reports, seminars and counselling.

Group Discussion Workplace Mental Health Training

Book a complimentary consultation with The Mental Health Coach

Workplace Mental Health Training Boardroom

The four stages of psychological safety

1. Inclusion safety

Inclusion safety fulfills the fundamental human need to belong. At this stage, an employee feels accepted by their team and safe to be themselves, which in turn nurtures self-confidence and a sense of community.

2. Learner safety

Learner safety fulfills the human need to acquire knowledge and develop abilities. An employee feels safe to learn by asking questions, experimenting (sometimes unsuccessfully) and exchanging feedback. As a result, they become more comfortable taking risks and build resilience in the process.

3. Contributor safety

Contributor safety fulfills the human need to make meaningful contributions. With encouragement and guidance, an employee feels safe to apply their skills as the business requires. This increased effort and enthusiasm can translate into significant gains for your organisation.

4. Challenger safety

Challenger safety fulfills the human need for improvement, bolstering innovation and optimal performance. Welcome to challenge the status quo without risking reputational damage or retribution, an employee trusts that they can voice their opinion when they identify an opportunity for positive change.

Group Training Workplace Mental Health Training

Why is psychological safety important in an organisation?

Talent

In today’s competitive climate, the most skilled employees won’t settle for unsafe work environments. They know what kind of culture is required to promote their professional development and will appreciate the employer who provides it.

If you foster psychological safety in the workplace, your business can attract and retain top performers with a variety of backgrounds, skills and knowledge to maximise performance.

Innovation

Innovation is driven by brainstorms and risk-taking, which themselves are fueled by rewarded vulnerability. According to the Diversity Council Australia’s Inclusion at Work Index: Mapping the State of Inclusion in the Australian Workforce (2019), employees in psychologically safe environments are five times more likely to overcome problems with innovative solutions.

Ready to break ground and keep up with ever-evolving competitors? Create an inclusive environment that builds trust and values team members who think outside of the box.

Workplace culture

Our behaviour is determined by the reactions it has elicited in the past. If vulnerability is met with punishment now, an employee is much less likely to feel confident sharing new ideas and making valuable contributions in the future.

On the other hand, employees who are rewarded for their vulnerability will trust their team to respect their input next time. This openness helps businesses to better understand their workforce’s needs and make informed decisions to optimise operations.

Customer experience

Businesses that play a proactive role in promoting psychological safety are better equipped to provide exceptional customer experiences for the communities they support.

With a diverse workforce who aren’t afraid to push boundaries, your business will be able to deliver creative and mindful solutions that uphold brand values while ticking all the boxes for your target audience.

Professionals working in an open plan office

Psychological safety in the workplace – coaching & counselling

Want professional support and guidance with psychological safety in your workplace? Our diverse team has the expertise to create a custom solution for your employees’ unique needs. Experienced leaders, coaches and counselors with an in-depth understanding of HR and Organisational Development activities, we bring our multidisciplinary backgrounds to every engagement.

Let’s start with a complimentary conversation about your goals and how our broad experience base can best help you to achieve them.

Psychological safety reports

If you’d like to measure psychological safety in the workplace, it’s best to trade subjective guessing for accurate reports. With our gold-standard and cost-effective solution, you can get the facts for less than you may think.

Compiling results from an anonymous team questionnaire, our report equips your business with a state-of-play snapshot and action plan for boosting psychological safety. As well as determining which stage your team is currently at, it offers a range of suggestions on measures we can implement together to build trust in your team. Of course, your consultant will be with you to provide support and advice every step of the way.

Why choose The Mental Health Coach?

Flexible delivery

Our team can design and implement custom solutions for businesses across the globe. Choose from an in-person, virtual or hybrid program to suit your structure and schedule.

First-hand experience

Having worked in leadership for private, community and not-for-profit organisations of all sizes, we’ll leverage a wide breadth of on-ground experience to help you achieve your goals.

Reliable credentials

The Mental Health Coach holds an International Coaching Federation ACC Credential, Diploma of Counselling, Cert IV in Mental Health, and Principal Master Instructor qualification with Mental Health Australia.

Some of the clients we work with

Frequently asked questions

Psychological safety in the workplace has various definitions, depending on who you ask. For instance, Harvard Business School professor, Dr. Amy Edmondson, describes it as, “a belief that one will not be punished or humiliated for speaking up with ideas, questions, concerns or mistakes.” At The Mental Health Coach, we view psychological safety in the workplace as a corporate environment in which vulnerability is rewarded.

Importantly, this doesn’t mean that every action must be met with smiles and consensus. Rather, it’s about embracing constructive discussion, respecting our shared humanity, and then collaborating towards meaningful contribution. The result? Increased engagement, innovation and performance.

The Harvard Business Review has reported several research findings that highlight psychological safety as a key trait in high-performing teams. And in the workplace, its benefits are two-fold.

For a team member, psychological safety brings less stress, plus greater confidence, engagement and satisfaction. When employees believe that their insights are being valued, they not only feel accepted and respected by their team but also see the worth of their contributions.

This trust empowers employees to share their opinions and ideas – a development that can bring considerable benefits for your business. By fully leveraging the expertise of each member, teams are better equipped to consider every angle, adopt innovative approaches and solve problems effectively.

Yes, the Mental Health Coach offers consultancy, webinars and reports to businesses across Australia and overseas. Wherever your workplace is based, we can deliver a customised solution to boost psychological safety amongst team members.

To learn more, please call us anytime on 1300 302 462 or book a complimentary online consultation.

Yes they can. At The Mental Health Coach, we understand that each business – and every person within it – is unique. That’s why we tailor our services for the team and operations at hand. Whether you want to deliver a single webinar to the whole company or implement an in-person program for a specific department, our experts can make it happen.

Book a complimentary consultation today to find out how The Mental Health Coach can help to support psychological safety in your workplace.

No. With The Mental Health Coach, you can enjoy the flexibility of organising psychological safety services for just one team, a select few or everyone – it’s up to you. We can also assess psychological safety levels across your business, supporting particular teams based on our findings.

The two most common barriers to participation in workplace programs are a team member feeling:

  • Disengaged; and
  • Wary of being judged or measured.

At The Mental Health Coach, we’ve developed a considered approach to overcome these obstacles and support a successful outcome. Firstly, our programs are designed with participant engagement in mind, featuring personalised materials and experiences to hold interest and boost morale.

What’s more, all of our findings are reported at the team level. As we aggregate results from anonymous and depersonalised data, employees can rest assured that no one will be peeking at their personal attitudes or performance levels.

Psychological safety in the workplace is usually measured through affordable reports that aim to identify perceptions at the team level. Utilising industry-leading psychometric tools from Leader Factor, we’ll present employees with a questionnaire that provides a baseline for psychological safety levels. After program delivery, we will then assess progress with a second questionnaire.

We are also able to measure psychological safety in the workplace through other methods, such as identifying problem areas and then reviewing whether these issues are still present.

To chat through your options further, please book a complimentary consultation with the Mental Health Coach today.

Yes. With first-hand experience in the management of sensitive information across various industries, we understand the critical importance of keeping findings confidential.

All of our reports detail aggregated results from anonymous and depersonalised data, ensuring peace of mind that your business and employees’ privacy is protected.