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Psychological Safety at Work
January 14, 2022
You can never learn less; you can only learn more. The reason I know so much is because I have made so many mistakes.
-Buckminster Fuller
In an interview with Harvard Business School Professor Amy Edmonson, Morra Aarons-Mele of the Harvard Business Review, notes, “Psychological safety, it’s not about being nice. It’s the idea that you aren’t going to be embarrassed, shamed or even punished for speaking up with your questions, concerns or mistakes on the job. It’s really important in today’s workforce says Amy Edmondson, and psychologically safe teams get things done and move big ideas forward.”

Psychologically unsafe environments foster worry, whereas in psychologically safe environments, Edmonson says, “You can speak up, ask for help, disagree with an idea, admit a mistake and you won’t be rejected or punished in some way …It’s an environment where your focus is on the task or on other people. Not on yourself.” Psychological safety frees us to take risks, address challenges productively, make improvements and get things done.

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