Sometimes people use to the expression “team health.” One of the things a team must have if it is to be healthy is psychological safety, and it is the leader’s responsibility to provide it. A safe environment is one in which employees feel secure. “Se comes from the Latin, meaning without, cure means fear or care” (Deming, 1986, p.59). The leader who wants to provide security, rather than simply feel it personally, will put into practice activities that result in workplace safety.
Seven actions that leaders can take to instill security were identified by Dahlgaard and Kristensen (1994), and at least in some ways can help a leader “show up” rather than be passive:
- Employees should be given responsibility to know their area of the company
- They should have a good feeling about management’s competence
- They should be treated as individuals, not robots
- Their work should involve good cooperation from others
- They need to be given regular feedback, so they can know they are doing a good job
- They need to know how the company is doing
- They should have a sense of belonging in their position (p. 77).
These seven areas would help with both personal and organizational anxiety disorders. There are other things required for team health which shall be covered in other posts, but without psychological security all efforts to produce team health will be in vain.
Dahlgaard, J. J., & Kristensen, K. (1994). The quality journey. Total Quality Management, 5(1/2), 1–154. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=bth&AN=9411295590&authtype=sso&custid=s8876267&site=ehost-live
Deming, W. (1986). Out of the crisis. Cambridge, MA: Massachusetts Institute of Technology.