- Accountability can enhance psychological safety:
- Psychological safety can enhance accountability:
- Leadership is key:
You may be pondering this very question as we speak. Should I stay, or should I go? As a leading Dublin recruitment agency, we know that one of the defining reasons working professionals are re-enter the job market is due to a base level need previously explained in Maslow’s hierarchy of needs pyramid: Psychological Safety.
Psychological safety is a fundamental need for human beings, and it plays a crucial role in our decision to stay or leave our current employer. According to Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, psychological safety is a key component of self-actualization, which is the highest level of need in the hierarchy.
What is Psychological Safety?
Psychological safety refers to the belief that you won’t be punished or humiliated for speaking up with ideas, questions, concerns or even making mistakes. It’s a feeling of being able to express yourself without fear of negative consequences. It’s important to note that psychological safety isn’t the same as comfort, or being free of criticism, but it’s the confidence that the team has the best interest of one another at heart.
Why is Psychological Safety important in the Workplace?
Psychological safety is a critical factor in creating a healthy workplace culture. When employees feel safe to express themselves, they are more likely to contribute their best work and take risks. Employees are willing to share new ideas, offer solutions to problems and can learn from their mistakes without feeling the need to hide or blame. It encourages collaboration and team members can feel safe to give constructive feedback and offer differing opinions. In essence, a psychologically safe workplace cultivates an environment where innovation and growth can thrive.
When it comes to staying or leaving a job, psychological safety is a significant factor in the decision-making process. Employees who feel psychologically safe are more likely to stay with their current employer, as they feel valued and that their contributions are making an impact. On the other hand, employees who feel unsafe in the workplace, whether due to a toxic work environment or fear of retaliation for speaking up, are more likely to leave.
Can Psychological Safety And Accountability Go Together?
Psychological safety and accountability are two critical components of a healthy workplace culture. However, it’s not always clear whether these two concepts can coexist in the same workplace. In this blog post, we will explore the relationship between psychological safety and accountability and whether they can go together.
What is Accountability?
Accountability refers to taking responsibility for one’s actions and decisions. It’s the acknowledgment that you are responsible for your work and the outcomes of your decisions. Accountability is essential for creating a productive and efficient workplace where employees take ownership of their work and strive to achieve their goals.
Can Psychological Safety and Accountability Coexist?
The short answer is yes, psychological safety and accountability can coexist in the same workplace. In fact, they are complementary concepts that can reinforce each other. Here’s how:
Accountability can enhance psychological safety:
When employees know that they are accountable for their actions and decisions, they are more likely to take their work seriously and strive for excellence. This can lead to increased trust among team members and a greater sense of psychological safety.
Psychological safety can enhance accountability:
When employees feel psychologically safe, they are more likely to take a chance and share their ideas without feelings of discouragement. This can lead to more innovative and effective solutions to problems. However, psychological safety can only thrive when there is a sense of accountability. Employees need to know that their contributions are valued, and that they will be held accountable for their work.
Leadership is key:
The relationship between psychological safety and accountability is heavily influenced by leadership. Leaders must create a culture that encourages both psychological safety and accountability. This includes setting clear expectations, providing feedback, and holding employees accountable for their actions while ensuring that everyone feels heard and valued.
How to Foster Both Psychological Safety and Accountability
Fostering a workplace culture that values both psychological safety and accountability requires deliberate efforts. Here are some strategies for achieving this:
1. Set clear expectations:
Leaders must set clear expectations for employees, including the goals and outcomes they are expected to achieve. Employees need to understand what is expected of them, and how they will be held accountable for their work.
2. Provide feedback:
Regular feedback is essential for promoting both psychological safety and accountability. Feedback should be constructive, specific, and timely, and should focus on both successes and areas for improvement.
3. Encourage open communication:
Encourage open communication, active listening, and the exchange of ideas. This creates an environment where employees feel heard and valued, and where they can share their thoughts and concerns without fear of negative consequences.
4. Lead by example:
Leaders must lead by example and model the behaviour they expect from their employees. This includes taking responsibility for their actions and decisions, admitting to mistakes, and showing vulnerability.
In conclusion, psychological safety and accountability can coexist in the same workplace. In fact, they are complementary concepts that can reinforce each other. Leaders must create a culture that values both psychological safety and accountability by setting clear expectations, providing feedback, encouraging open communication, and leading by example. By doing so, they can create a healthy workplace culture that fosters innovation, growth, and success.