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Give Your Managers Tools and Resources to Build a Psychologically Safe Workplace

Give Your Managers Tools and Resources to Build a Psychologically Safe Workplace

LinkedIn's recently released 2023 Workplace Learning Report, a compilation of data collected from surveys completed by learning and development (L&D) and HR leaders, learners, C-Suite executives and billions of data points created by more than 800 million LinkedIn members around the world, reveals that 83% of organizations want to create "people-centric cultures." 

The report breaks down the "fastest growing skills" based on year-over-year growth among L&D professionals. These skills are already important today and are among the top skills being developed and added to LinkedIn profiles. Not surprisingly, management tops the list.

Managers must balance the needs of their team and organizational expectations


Since the inception of the CEO Health + Safety Leadership Network in 2015, we have been talking about the critical role that managers play in organizational success and the challenges and pressures they face.

On top of leading their business unit, contributing to strategic decision-making and planning, and coaching teams to high performance, many managers must navigate the unknown waters of leading from afar in fully remote or hybrid workplaces. They are learning how to build deeper relationships with individual employees, engaging in critical conversations about DEI and mental health, and managing their own careers, well-being, and uncertainties. 

It's a heavy load for all leaders to bear, particularly managers, who must balance the needs of their teams with organizational goals and expectations. 

Managing mental well-being, managing stress, and preventing burnout

In August 2022, Benefits Canada reported that they surveyed 1100 leaders from 11 companies in global markets, including Canada, Europe, and the US, and 96% of respondents reported feeling exhausted and indicated their mental health had declined. The top stressors were the increase in work volume, the desire to provide adequate support for the well-being of employees, performance demands, and implementing restructurings, layoffs, and cost-cutting measures.

Mental health and stress have also appeared in the list of the top five priorities in WSPS’ annual Health and Safety Leadership Survey for the past four years. 

Managers don’t have to walk this road alone

This is why we created “Psychological Safety in Action: A Guidebook for Managers.” It is a compilation of Milena Braticevic’s Mental Resilience and Psychological Safety presentation to the CEO Health + Safety Leadership Network in 2022, expertise and insights shared by Dr. Bill Howatt on the Trusted Leader Blog, content from various Network whitepapers and numerous external sources.

The Guidebook will help managers on the journey toward becoming psychologically safe leaders. It includes expert insights and tips, exercises, real-life scenarios and links to numerous resources. It is organized into five sections:

  1. Embrace Psychological Safety – This section explores the importance of a psychologically safe culture and the manager's role in creating this environment. It includes a simple exercise managers can work through with their teams to assess the degree of psychological safety in their workplace.

  2. Become an Authentic and Inclusive Leader – Managers can connect with teams in a very real and authentic way. To do this, they must embrace the fact that they set the tone for the team and significantly influence employee experience. This section describes inclusive leadership, information about managing emotions, and tips for building healthy connections. A team exercise helps the manager and team members assess the employee experience. 

  3. Foster Resilience and Mental Well-being – Organizations and leaders realize that they must recognize and support the "whole" employee. Most people show up wanting to be productive and collaborative, but they can't leave the stresses and challenges they face outside of work at the door. This section explores stress, anxiety and depression, rest, rejuvenation, and burnout and provides tips and resources to help managers recognize and manage warning signs. 

  4. Nurture Learning and Growth – Challenging our natural tendency to view people and situations with a fixed mindset is critical to learning and growth. This section of the guide includes prompts managers can use to challenge their own fixed thoughts and tips for destigmatizing failure and promoting a growth mindset on the team.

  5. Learn from the Experts – The guide closes with advice from Dr. Bill Howat and Milena Braticevic, Ph.D. to address three real-life scenarios – a manager buffering their high-performing, cohesive team from the chaos of the organization, another manager who is figuring out how to support an under-performing employee who has been diagnosed with a mental illness, and finally, a manager who is close to burning out because they struggle with being a leader and fear that their team and others consider them to be weak.

Senior leadership commitment to creating a psychologically safe workplace will only go so far if managers aren't equipped to keep themselves and their team members mentally fit. “Psychological Safety in Practice” is a practical guide with insights, tools, and resources to help your managers get started.

Download your copy today.  

Get to know the author – Fresh Communications

 

 

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