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Trusted Leader Blog

Access leadership and trust building communication tips to help you improve team productivity and safety.

Posts about psychological safety in teams:

Leadership Skill: Moving from Survival to Contribution

Leadership Skill: Moving from Survival to Contribution

As Abraham Maslow taught in his Hierarchy of Needs, we can’t concern ourselves with higher goals (self-mastery and purpose) until we have the necessities of life.  These being physiological (food and water), physical safety and social connection.

In the workplace, employees need confirmation that their fellow co-workers are looking out for them.  They need to feel connected and that colleagues really care about them.

At the same time, employees need to believe the work they do matters, that they’re making an impact and others appreciate their work.  And that they have a clear future within the organisation.

How Psychological Safety and Accountability are Inextricably Linked

Copyright Marie-Claire Ross Pty Ltd

In a highly popular Tedx video, Amy Edmondson, a Harvard Business professor, talks through her research on the impact of accountability and psychological safety in teams.  She discovered that when high levels of psychological safety and accountability collide it leads to high performance.

Her theory has been the genesis for these four zones of team performance based on work I have done with teams over the years.  These zones are unpacked in more detail in my book, TRUSTED TO THRIVE: How leaders create connected and accountable teams. Let me step you through the model above.  Essentially, both psychological safety and accountability are modelled and managed by the team leader. How a leader models and rewards behaviour creates the culture in which a team operates: