Keyword Analysis & Research: psychological safety meaning

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What is psychological safety in the workplace?

Psychological safety is a shared belief that the team is safe for interpersonal risk taking. It can be defined as "being able to show and employ one's self without fear of negative consequences of self-image, status or career" (Kahn 1990, p. 708). In psychologically safe teams, team members feel accepted and respected.

Why is psychological safety important?

Studies on psychological safety point to wide-ranging benefits, including increased confidence, creativity, trust and productivity. A 2017 Gallup report found that if organizations increase psychological safety, it makes employees more engaged in their work and can lead to a 12% increase in productivity.

How to improve psychological safety?

One of the best ways to increase psychological safety is to be transparent. Whether it's performance feedback, organizational politics, budgets, promotions or layoffs, people like to feel heard and listened to. Transparency gives members of an organization answers to vague questions that are important and cause anxiety.


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