People, Purpose, Passion
Leadership for Psychological Health, Joy and Safety in the Workplace
As leaders, helping people to find their passion and helping them have significance at work are becoming bigger parts of our job. Passion is what shapes our purpose in life and in business. When an idea starts taking shape, purpose is what helps define it.
Leadership has an immediate impact on workplace climate, health and well-being. Research shows a direct link between effective leadership and psychologically healthy workplaces. Today, leaders are responsible for creating a welcoming and safe workplace that will empower and enable employees to do their best.
Mental health is an important element of employee well-being and effectiveness. Healthcare professionals are experiencing burnout at higher rates and staff turnover is on the rise. The effects can be significant when employees feel that their voices are no longer heard, that their skills are not valued and that leadership does not align with their personal values.
Joy in work is a step toward creating safe, humane places for people to find meaning and purpose in their work. It entails leaders creating space to listen, understand and involve colleagues in providing input into decisions as an essential step in co-creation and participative management. Perhaps the best case for improving joy is that it incorporates the most essential aspects of positive daily work as stated in the Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI) – Framework for Improving Joy in Work.
Indicated in The National Standard of Canada for Psychological Health and Safety in the Workplace, a psychologically safe workplace promotes a positive culture and can prevent stigma and discrimination.
- Be accessible and approachable;
- Invite participation;
- View failures as learning opportunities;
- Use direct, clear language;
- Set boundaries about what is acceptable behaviour and hold others accountable for boundary violation; and
- Develop and sustain a just culture.
Just as we “dared to make a difference” through courageous leadership in 2018 – those same courageous leadership traits of being humble, self-aware of our own values, strength and limitations will serve us well as we work towards creating a sense of community and belonging at work. Leadership is a lifelong journey and the ability to “Lead Self” is ground zero and from there the sky is the limit in being able to engage others, collaborate, achieve results and transform systems (LEADS).
Thriving at work and in life doesn’t happen by accident and skilled leaders can and will have a tremendously positive impact. Take your next leadership step to creating a psychologically safe workplace at the 2019 BC Health Leaders Conference.