My Personal Discovery of an Emotional Safe Environment

Since long, I have wanted to explain the topic of emotionally safe environments from my own experience.

This type of workplace culture is often still seen as idealistic and "nice to have" or rather something that comes at the expense of customer service and could ultimately have a negative impact on the bottom line. I was grateful for the additional facts and figures on this topic after reading the book „The Fearless Organization - creating Psychological Safety in the Workplace" by Amy C. Edmondson.

Just as the way where we will be working has changed in recent years, the way how we will be working in the future will be changing as well. An emotionally secure workplace will therefore be seen even more in future as a prerequisite for a healthy company and the real long-term basis for improving performance.

About 15 years ago, after some experience in management training, I noticed some typical differences in the behaviour of participants from one seminar to the next. The level of engagement, openness and collaboration was amazing in one place, and somehow boring, closed and more individualistic in my other seminars.

At the beginning, I thought that I was the only one to be responsible for a certain degree of openness and cooperation within the group. However, experience has shown me, that a large part of this was also due to the group's willingness to work together and the complete absence of the need to manage any status.

What was the main reason why one group behaved so openly and freely - which gained in dynamics as the days went by - and the other group, who found it difficult to express anything personal at all?

A few years later, and after I had dived into some books on corporate culture, it dawned on me what the explanation for my different observations could be. The group with high levels of openness, commitment and participation FELT SAFE, like they were free from any fear. The other group was unconsciously worried about their personal status and how they would look like in the eyes of others.

I was grateful to learn about some additional facts and figures on this subject after reading Amy C. Edmonson's book "The Fearless Organization - creating Psychological Safety in the Workplace..".

Experiencing an atmosphere in which people become the true, authentic version of themselves is both fascinating and contagious. A typical sign of this behaviour is the delay in disbanding the group at the end of the seminar. Like they all wanted to say, we don't want this experience to end.

I believe we will soon be hearing and learning more about this issue and the need to build an emotionally safe culture. If we don't get involved now, the next generation of leaders and employees knocking on our door may be the ones to remind us :-).





Rob G. M. Bots
Senior Management Trainer and Coach

Contact Rob on your phone
  Open Rob in WhatsApp Business

Free video meeting with Rob

  Schedule 30-Min Call with Zoom 




We use cookies

We use cookies on our website. Some of them are essential for the operation of the site, while others help us to improve this site and the user experience (tracking cookies). You can decide for yourself whether you want to allow cookies or not. Please note that if you reject them, you may not be able to use all the functionalities of the site.