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Psychological Safety - Deming to Edmondson

Psychological safety (PS) as a construct has been studied by academia, industry and the various media strata for suitability, weaknesses and implementability in the workplace predominantly. Depending on the definition of the psychological safety construct and whether it is applied to the team or the individual there is a great deal that its development can bring to an organisation.

What matters above all is that the teams at all levels see benefits in employing and supporting proactive personalities at all levels of the organisation as PS, drives innovation and progress. It does this in two ways, creating an environment where discussion is full and frank, but doesn't impact relationships. It exists within a duality of intent and performance improvement, where the team experiences improved peer-to-peer and supervisor-to-employee engagement. Decades of behavioural and organisational research indicates improved satisfaction and commitment in high psychological safety workplaces.

An IPSOS survey from the last decade across the world revealed that only 47% of employees agree that their workplace is psychologically safe, while 27% indicate that their workplace is psychologically unsafe. If leadership is going to pay attention to this issue and the costs associated with being part of the more than half of all companies, that are not perceived as safe, then they need to develop a better understanding of their culture and put serious efforts into their leader relationships and modelling.

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