Psych Safety is a new way of thinking about teams and setting them up for success. It’s something that can and should be practiced at project sites and in offices. Yet, don’t limit this strictly to work as it could have a huge impact on your home life as well. So what is it? Psych Safety is the “belief that one will not be punished or humiliated for speaking up with ideas, questions, concerns or mistakes.” Okay, so what’s the big deal?
When many of us started our careers, we were taught to keep our heads down and do the work. A common acronym was CLM. If you’ve never heard of this before, it means Career Limiting Move. In other words, people didn’t admit their mistakes because they didn’t want to look incompetent. We also didn’t challenge the status quo for fear that we would be viewed as negative. In this old way of thinking, people who did not take chances or share ideas were the people who got ahead. The mentality was to play it safe and win. Talk about not reaching your potential and basically putting on the brakes.
A New Way of Thinking
The new way of thinking is to provide psychological safety in the workplace. This allows people to do the things they are capable of (e.g. taking your foot OFF the brake). When employees feel safe, they’re more comfortable asking questions and sharing ideas. Ultimately, this allows them to stop focusing on not making mistakes or looking impressive. Additionally, it gives them the opportunity to focus on solving problems, accomplishing the mission, and serving clients.
During Construction Week, take a chance to make a difference on your own team. Whether you’re on a project site or in the office – encourage your employees to share ideas and questions. Then support them and thank them for their efforts. That is leading the Interstates Way.
Keep leading the Interstates way!
Scott Peterson, Interstates Chief Executive Officer