Me (Wendy): “Bob, you’re so correct about the fear cultures that some management think it’s necessary to propel people to work hard, but in effect, it stifles innovation, creativity, and collaboration. According to Dr. Amy Edmondson (professor of Leadership and Management at Harvard Business School who came up with the term psychological safety), in order to nurture innovation, creativity, and collaboration, we need to have the 4 components of psychological safety: 1) Inclusion & Diversity, 2) Attitude to Risk & Failure, 3) Willingness to Help, and 4) Open Conversation.”
Bob: “Hmm… do you mind expanding a little on those 4 components?”
Me: “Sure. Dr. Amy Edmondson says team members who feel included are more inclined to speak up, contribute and add to the group. Teams that hold mistakes against each other risk a lack of control and forward momentum. And when people are not able to help each other or feel appreciated by team members, teams become unsafe. Also, a team that has open and candid conversations is able to tackle hard problems better. According to Dr. Amy Edmondson, psychological safety is about cultivating a work environment that propels high performance for all employees. It is NOT about just making sure team members ‘feel good’.”
Bob: “In other words, a safe and trusting environment at work actually is better for a company, because the company ends up performing better.”
Me: “You got it.”
Bob: “Does diversity mean what I think it means – having a diverse representation?”
Me: “Well, if you mean diversity as in gender, age, religion, race, sexual orientation – it’s more than that.”
Bob: “Can you expand on that?”
Me: “Diversity is more than the usual ones HR thinks about. It’s really rather simple. Diversity is just anything that is different from you. So, for here, it means people have different ways of thinking (or neurodiversity), different ways of expressing things – remember VARK which we added to our training?”
Bob: “Yes! VARK is a form of diversity.”
Me: “Right on! But don’t forget, having diversity is not good enough. We need to have inclusion. I really like how Verna Myers put it: Diversity is being invited to the party; inclusion is being asked to dance.”
Bob: “Wow! I like that!”
Come back next time and see what Wendy and Bob have to say about psychological safety in meetings. In the meantime, you can see all the articles I’ve written on the subject on meetings.
Read the rest of Wendy’s story here:
- Part 1: Do we have to do video calls? Aren’t there better ways to do things?
- Part 2: What meetings can we get rid of? Aren’t there better ways to do things?
- Part 3: What other meetings can we remove? What else can we cut from our calendars?
- Part 4: Replacing meetings to gain more time on your calendar to be productive
- Part 5: How to recognize different meeting types to increase your productivity?
- Part 6: Evolve your meetings beyond agendas and action items to achieve better outcomes
- Part 7: Facilitate Your Remote Control to Improve Your Meetings and Collaborations
- Part 8: Saying No to FOMO – How to treat meetings with intentionality
- Part 9: Why meeting agenda is passé, and what you can do to improve them
- Part 10: Invest in the art of meeting invitations to have better meetings
- Part 11: Remote Facilitation Magic: Things to do before a meeting to have better meetings
- Part 12: How to easily set the stage for more successful meetings
- Part 13: Want to be a meeting host? Up-level your facilitation skills
- Part 14: Do you want to liberate your meetings from staid agendas?
- Part 15: Want to know how to stand out from the typical meetings? Change the way you end!
- Part 16: Successful meeting cultures: why you don’t want to break the psychological safety barrier
- Part 17: How to recognize the signs of lack of psychological safety in your teams
- Part 19: How to CLEARly have psychological safety at meetings