The Psychological Safety health check is an insightful tool that helps you see how comfortable people feel within their work team by getting feedback on dimensions that are used to measure levels of safety. The more they agree with a statement, the more safe they feel.
Professor Amy C Edmondson of Harvard University coined the term psychological safety as a way to describe a workplace environment free from interpersonal fear. A psychologically safe space is one in which the members of a group share the unspoken belief that theirs is a safe space in which they can take interpersonal risks.
Those interpersonal risks may mean –
- conflict is observed. This is because safe spaces can allow for quite direct, and very candid conversations to take place.
- ideas are rigorously explored and assessed.
- errors are made and failure is experienced as people feel safe to take risks and experiment with different solutions.
The benefit of psychologically safe workspaces is that they remain productive and professional with members being thoughtful and considerate. This health check surfaces the degree to which each team member feels safe. A team leader can then see how safe the group feels and talk through what that means for the team.