Google published a list of the five traits that its most successful teams share. First among them was "psychological safety."
The term was coined by Harvard Business School professor Amy Edmondson.
Better performing teams seemed to be making more errors than worse performing ones.
It wasn’t that the best teams were making the most errors, but that the best teams were admitting to errors and discussing them more often than other groups did. In other words, what distinguished the best performing teams was psychological safety, which facilitated a "climate of openness."
So how can leaders create psychological safety in their organizations? Edmondson outlines three paths:
1. Frame work as learning problems, as opposed to execution problems.
2. Acknowledge your own fallibility.
3. Model curiosity by asking a lot of questions.