Psychological safety and high-performing teams: Webinar recording and recap.

Author Hayden Gordine
March 17, 2023

We are delighted to share with you our “Psychological safety and high-performing teams” webinar recording and insights.

On Tuesday 14 March 2023, Angela Franks, Partner and Head of Frazer Jones Australia, facilitated our webinar titled: Psychological safety and high-performing teams.

With so much talk in the public domain on hybrid working 2.0, and the apparent conflict and mismanagement due to focus on the needs of teams in the workplace, we thought it was important to explore what a performing team looks like – how do they act, interact and what is that magic formula? And, with the new legislation in Australia on psychological safety, we wanted to explore the relationship between the two.

Additional insights

How do you know you’re in a high-performing team?

1. Individually everyone is in high performance, positively stretched and challenged, learning new skills (and open to learning), feel valued and are engaged in what they do.

2. The team genuinely care about each other – checking in with each other (not just leader to team but peer to peer, team to leader etc, which makes it a team culture and won’t ever be confused with checking up on).

3. Individually we have specific skills and collectively the right mix of skills – we know how to leverage the strengths of each person and proactively do this.

What behaviours do we need from leaders to embrace ‘real’ psychological safety?

1. Encourage everyone to participate in team meetings: everyone has team members who prefer to ‘talk to think’ and everyone has team members who ‘think to talk’.  Find a safe balance for everyone.  Perhaps rotating ‘chairperson’ roles, ‘minute-taking’ roles and ‘agenda setting’ roles could be one way of doing this.  Gently encouraging those who talk more to allow space for those who talk less.  Everyone has a perspective, even the shyest member of a team.  They will just need the right environment to let that be voiced.

2. When you’re in meetings, consider how much you – as leader – talk vs listen.  You have 2 ears and one mouth, try to use them in that proportion.  The more you listen, the more others have space to talk.

3. Respond to mistakes in a way which avoids ‘finger pointing’ and ‘blame game’ tactics. If you hear yourself saying the words ‘who did/said that?’ or ‘who did this?’ consider the impact and purpose of this.  Find ways of encouraging people to respond to their mistakes, own them and move on.  There is of course a difference between a genuine mistake and an ongoing performance issue – and the two things need to be handled differently.

The accountability and success checklist, TASC (Brene Browne “Dare to Lead”)

T — Who owns the task?
A — Do they have the authority to be held accountable?
S — Do we agree that they are set up for success (time, resources, clarity)?
C — Do we have a checklist of what needs to happen to accomplish the task? 

Google Research re:Work “What makes a team effective at Google?”

Code-named Project Aristotle – a tribute to Aristotle’s quote, “the whole is greater than the sum of its parts” (as the Google researchers believed employees can do more working together than alone) – the goal was to answer the question: “What makes a team effective at Google?”

To read more on the Google research and findings click here.


Bernadette Thomas

CEO and founder of Rosby Consulting and The Wellbeing Games

Patrick Bruneau

Head of People and Culture at Diageo, and registered Psychologist

Skye Mackie

Head of HR – Transformation and Projects at Equifax

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