Trust, phycological safety and collaboration


Leadership training #1

Your training exercise is: Having one or more conversations where you make trust and psychological safety explicit.


Research shows that reflecting on important personal needs serves as a buffer to stress. Having conversations about personal values and needs engages our brain in a positive and healthy way, giving us a broader context for our performance.

What the training is not:

Your task is not to establish a team with 100% psychological safety and trust. The training is about three things:

  1. starting one or more conversations that create awareness around trust and psychological safety.
  2. getting you acquainted with your own comfort zone and the leadership responsibility of supporting the subjective and human side of long term performance (not only in a yearly appraisal situation).
  3. experimenting with leadership tools such as curiosity, listening and asking questions rather than giving answers.

There is no ONE way to do this The challenge is to try; experiment; be courageous, curious and caring. One example: 

  1. Get in touch with your genuine curiosity, chose one or more people you want to support and learn more about. Set up a zoom call or a coffee-conversation.
  2. Be¬†transparent by introducing your training exercise or go right ahead and ask people¬†what is important to them when it comes to¬†experience trust and a safe environment. If choosing the latter approach some kind of preparation e-mail or “heads-up” would probably be helpful.

Tip: Allow your self to be inspired by them. Empower your colleague by expressing what inspires you about his or her honesty or reflection. Give authentic feedback by saying:

  • “What inspires me with what you are saying is….
  • ” What I like about what you are saying is”
  • What I think all of us could learn from you is…”
  • “Thanks for sharing!”

See them by asking clarifying questions like:

  • “Is what you’re saying that….” ¬† or ¬†¬†“Do I understand you correctly that what you need more of is…?
  • “How can I support you in this?”
  • “What is mine and what is your responsibility in creating this?¬†
  • “Say more”, “Please elaborate”, “Explain further”

Notice and journal: What do¬†you avoid? When do you procrastinate?¬†What was helpful? Where did you “succeed”? What are you learning about your self as a person and as a leader during this training period?