If you’ve ever been in a relationship where you didn’t feel safe, you know how important emotional Safety is. When we don’t feel safe, we’re constantly on edge and unable to relax and enjoy the relationship. We may start to dread being around our partners because we never know when they might lash out or say something hurtful.
Creating emotional safety in your relationship is essential if you want a happy and healthy partnership. It’s not always easy, but it’s worth it to put in the effort to build trust and mutual respect. Here are 5 ways you can create emotional Safety in your relationship:
Importance of Emotional Safety
Emotional Safety has been researched extensively.
A pioneer in the field of organizational behavior, Harvard Professor Dr. Amy Edmonson, has shown that organizations must understand the phenomenon of employees voicing their opinions and that of teams working together and learning from their experiences.
Employees who feel safe in their jobs aren’t afraid to speak up. They don’t feel they’ll be criticized or punished for expressing their views.
Emotional Safety is important for businesses because it allows employees to feel comfortable communicating openly. This is especially critical for businesses with safety-critical operations, like healthcare, where the consequences of not speaking up could be disastrous.
A 2006 study by Collins & Smith and a 2009 study from Harvard found that feeling emotionally safe at work helps people share knowledge and information.
Psychological Safety is especially important if your employees lack confidence in themselves.
Organizations need innovation, but it hinders progress when people can’t share ideas.
Emotional Safety is important because it allows employees to feel comfortable around their leaders and speak up with organizational improvement suggestions; research from the Academy of Management Journal explains why this is the case.
They feel comfortable brainstorming ideas, and even if they fail, they will still learn from the experience.
These employees are also more likely to perform at their absolute best for their employer.
Emotional Safety is important because it allows employees to feel supported and cared about. With a growth mindset, cohesiveness and collaboration are valued, so there’s no sense of point-scoring. This creates an environment where everyone can feel safe to do their best work.
Emotional Safety is how employees feel they can take risks without negative repercussions.
How to Create Emotional Safety in Your Workplace
Emotional Safety should be part of your company’s culture and should be practiced every day.
Here are steps your company can take to improve the workplace’s emotional Safety.
1. When you make a mistake, own up to it
What would happen in your organization right now if someone made a mistake? It’s okay to make mistakes. We all do it! What’s important is that you own up to it and learn from it. You’ll show your strength of character, and people will respect you.
If a team is operating poorly and psychological Safety is lacking, small errors are more likely to be dismissed or kept hidden. This can lead to bigger problems down the line, as people are afraid to speak up or challenge the status quo.
2. Let employees know their contribution matters
Feeling safe at work comes from knowing your contributions are valued. Knowing that you make a difference gives your employees the confidence they need.
Many employers cannot guarantee the future, but reassuring employees that they are valued provides a stronger sense of security in their role. This lets them know that their contributions matter and are an important part of the company.
3. Allow employees to have their voice within the organization
Employees need to feel that their voices are heard within the company and that their thoughts and views are valued. It’s important for employees to feel comfortable speaking up and to know that their input is appreciated. Listening to employees is key to maintaining a positive work environment where everyone feels part of the team.
Consider whether you have any opportunities to enable your employees to voice their opinions more.
3. Celebrate Individualism
Everyone’s personality is different, and that is something that should be respected and celebrated.
At our company, we celebrate not only results but also Individualism. We believe that the different perspectives of our employees are what make us great. That’s why we encourage opportunities for all voices to be heard.
No matter how you look at it, having a broad perspective is always valuable.
4. Focus on building trust
The development of trust between individuals is essential to forming supportive and authentic relationships. To build trust, it is important that people feel comfortable being themselves around one another and do not fear vulnerability. This applies to leadership as well.
When we take the time to get to know one another and express appreciation and support, we build trust.
5. Recognize people’s efforts
No news is not good news when recognizing people’s efforts.
If you’re not hearing anything from your manager, it could be a good thing or a bad thing. In the past, it was generally accepted that you were doing a good job if you weren’t getting scolded. However, that wasn’t always accurate and definitely wouldn’t suffice now. Young employees, in particular, need more than silence to feel appreciated.
For too many young workers, being left in silence can be unnerving.
It’s important to let people know when they’re doing a good job! Employees need to hear that their efforts are appreciated on an ongoing basis.
6. Promote Diversity and Inclusion
Employees who feel excluded are less likely to feel emotionally safe. You can promote greater diversity and inclusivity by taking some simple steps.
One way to promote diversity and inclusion in the workplace is to set up networks or employee resource groups. These can help employees feel like they have a community within the company and give them a forum to share their experiences and perspectives. Additionally, flexible working practices can make it easier for employees with different needs to meet their obligations both inside and outside of work.
7. Create a space to encourage positive customer feedback
Praise and positive reinforcement are powerful ways for organizations to create an emotionally safe space.
Learn more about high-trust cultures.
A high trust culture can improve employee engagement, motivation, and connection. It’s important to give feedback as it is to receive it. Make sure all feedback requests are responded to promptly.
Emotional Safety is essential in any relationship to create a happy and healthy partnership. It can be difficult to achieve, but it’s worth putting in the effort to build trust and mutual respect. By following the tips above, you can start creating a more emotionally safe environment in your relationship today.
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