What Is Psychological Safety in the workplace?

Welcome to YSM Solutions

(+44) 0141 354 1431
Go to content

What Is Psychological Safety in the workplace?

YSM Solutions latest
Published by Jessica in wellbeing, health, work, mental health · Wednesday 25 Aug 2021
Tags: psychologicalsafetymentalhealthwellbeingstress
It is a “a workplace that promotes workers’ psychological well-being and actively works to prevent harm to worker psychological health, including in negligent, reckless or intentional ways” from the Canadian CSA Standard Z1003-13 (R2018) "Psychological health and safety in the workplace - Prevention, promotion, and guidance to staged implementation"

Professor Amy Edmondson from Harvard University defines it as “Psychological safety is a belief that one will not be punished or humiliated for speaking up with ideas, questions, concerns or mistakes “

With ISO 45003 Occupational health and safety management — Psychological health and safety at work : managing psychosocial risks — Guidelines being launched in June 2021, there are organisations being more proactive in their approach in aiming to identify the root cause of psychosocial risks. The impact of not managing psychosocial risks for an organisation are increased costs due to high levels of absence and presenteeism, high turnover, workplace investigations, litigation which can have an impact on the reputation of an organisation.

An organisation is responsible for the occupational health and safety of all its employees and others who could be affected by its activities. It is essential for an organisation to eliminate hazards and minimise occupational health and safety risks by effective preventative and effective measures and this includes psychosocial risks.

Psychosocial hazards are about how work is organised, social factors at work and the work environment, equipment and hazardous tasks. Psychosocial hazards are in all organisations and sectors, and examples are some work tasks, equipment and employment arrangements. Social factors include interpersonal relationships, leadership and organisational/workgroup culture.
Psychosocial risks affect psychological health and safety. It also has an impact on health, safety, and well-being at work in a broad way. Psychosocial risks are associated with economic costs to organisations and to society, so it is therefore essential that it is managed effectively throughout the organisation from the top.
Effective management of psychosocial risk has benefits such as improved employee engagement, increase in productivity and innovation as well as organisational sustainability.

To take a proactive, preventative approach to psychosocial risks, our international approved training is available – IIRSM approved Stress Risk Assessment.

Back to content