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ATD Mid NJ - From Fear to Freedom: The Role of Leadership in Fostering Trust, Collaboration, and Innovation

  • Wed, June 21, 2023
  • 6:00 PM - 7:00 PM
  • Zoom



Psychological safety is the perception that an individual has of being able to speak up and take risks without fear of negative consequences, such as ridicule or punishment. It is essential in the workplace because it fosters a culture of innovation, collaboration, and engagement. Leaders have a crucial role in creating a culture of psychological safety by modeling openness, actively listening to employees, and creating a safe environment for feedback and constructive criticism. Other strategies include setting clear expectations, providing autonomy, and promoting a growth mindset. 

Conversely, a lack of psychological safety can lead to a toxic work environment, low morale, and decreased productivity. Signs of a psychologically unsafe workplace include fear of speaking up, lack of trust, micromanagement, and avoidance of conflict. This can impact employee well-being and productivity, leading to higher levels of stress, burnout, and turnover.

To build psychological safety, it is important to encourage feedback and create safe spaces for dialogue, acknowledge and learn from mistakes, and foster a sense of trust and respect among team members. As a result, leaders promote a workplace where employees feel valued, respected, and empowered.

Learning Objectives: 

  • Define psychological safety and its importance in the workplace.
  • Discuss the role of leadership in creating a culture of psychological safety.
  • Recognize the signs of a psychologically unsafe workplace and its impact on employee well-being and productivity.
  • Discover strategies and best practices for promoting psychological safety, including open communication, active listening, and constructive feedback.


Samantha Stone Reshes is a learning and organizational development program director at the Center for Learning and Innovation at Northwell Health, New York State’s largest health care provider and private employer. In her current role, she works in collaboration with subject matter experts across her organization to develop and deliver ongoing education that address the various needs of emerging and in-role healthcare leaders throughout the leadership life cycle. She is also an active member of multiple committees and employee resource groups that promote wellness, diversity, inclusion and belonging, improving workplace culture, professional development, and community outreach. Prior to her role at Northwell Health, Samantha worked for a local City University of New York (CUNY) community college, developing curricula for and facilitating writing and test-preparatory workshops for students, including English language learners and students with disabilities. She earned a master’s degree in communications and is an APTD credential holder.

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