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Article

Nancy J. Yanchus, Ryan Derickson, Scott C. Moore, Daniele Bologna and Katerine Osatuke

– The purpose of this paper is to explore employee perceptions of communication in psychologically safe and unsafe clinical care environments.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore employee perceptions of communication in psychologically safe and unsafe clinical care environments.

Design/methodology/approach

Clinical providers at the USA Veterans Health Administration were interviewed as part of planning organizational interventions. They discussed strengths, weaknesses, and desired changes in their workplaces. A subset of respondents also discussed workplace psychological safety (i.e. employee perceptions of being able to speak up or report errors without retaliation or ostracism – Edmondson, 1999). Two trained coders analysed the interview data using a grounded theory-based method. They excerpted passages that discussed job-related communication and summarized specific themes. Subsequent analyses compared frequencies of themes across workgroups defined as having psychologically safe vs unsafe climate based upon an independently administered employee survey.

Findings

Perceptions of work-related communication differed across clinical provider groups with high vs low psychological safety. The differences in frequencies of communication-related themes across the compared groups matched the expected pattern of problem-laden communication characterizing psychologically unsafe workplaces.

Originality/value

Previous research implied the existence of a connection between communication and psychological safety whereas this study offers substantive evidence of it. The paper summarized the differences in perceptions of communication in high vs low psychological safety environments drawing from qualitative data that reflected clinical providers’ direct experience on the job. The paper also illustrated the conclusions with multiple specific examples. The findings are informative to health care providers seeking to improve communication within care delivery teams.

Details

Journal of Health Organization and Management, vol. 28 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1477-7266

Keywords

Content available
Article

Gonzalo Lizarralde, Holmes Páez, Adriana Lopez, Oswaldo Lopez, Lisa Bornstein, Kevin Gould, Benjamin Herazo and Lissette Muñoz

Few people living in informal settlements in the Global South spontaneously claim that they are “resilient” or “adapting” to disaster risk or climate change. Surely, they…

Abstract

Purpose

Few people living in informal settlements in the Global South spontaneously claim that they are “resilient” or “adapting” to disaster risk or climate change. Surely, they often overcome multiple challenges, including natural hazards exacerbated by climate change. Yet their actions are increasingly examined through the framework of resilience, a notion developed in the North, and increasingly adopted in the South. To what extent eliminate’ do these initiatives correspond to the concepts that scholars and authorities place under the resilience framework?

Design/methodology/approach

Three longitudinal case studies in Yumbo, Salgar and San Andrés (Colombia) serve to investigate narratives of disaster risks and responses to them. Methods include narrative analysis from policy and project documents, presentations, five workshops, six focus groups and 24 interviews.

Findings

The discourse adopted by most international scholars and local authorities differs greatly from that used by citizens to explain risk and masks the politics involved in disaster reduction and the search for social justice. Besides, narratives of social change, aspirations and social status are increasingly masked in disaster risk explanations. Tensions are also concealed, including those regarding the winners and losers of interventions and the responsibilities for disaster risk reduction.

Originality/value

Our findings confirm previous results that have shown that the resilience framework contributes to “depoliticize” the analysis of risk and serves to mask and dilute the responsibility of political and economic elites in disaster risk creation. But they also show that resilience fails to explain the type of socioeconomic change that is required to reduce vulnerabilities in Latin America.

Details

Disaster Prevention and Management: An International Journal, vol. 29 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0965-3562

Keywords

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Article

Helena Lee

The purpose of the study is to investigate the psychological safety, organisation support and emotion in the workplace during the transition from office to home working…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of the study is to investigate the psychological safety, organisation support and emotion in the workplace during the transition from office to home working during the COVID-19 pandemic crisis. Past studies on emotion in the workplace mostly focus on types of discreet emotion, in relation to positive and negative emotions (e.g. Connelly and Torrence, 2018; Rubino et al., 2013). Other studies reported that emotions are derived from social comparison processes (Matta and Dyne, 2020). During a crisis, the emotional responses of the workers and organisational support to the different group of employees differ due to the social exchange relationship. Hence, this study contributes to the field of organisational support by examining the organisational support as the investment of both physical and psychological resources, and the emotional responses of employees to the COVID-19 pandemic crisis during transition from office to work-from-home setting. Through thick descriptions of the workers' emotion responses to this transition, the research examined how organisational support potentially impacts the worker's experience of psychological safety.

Design/methodology/approach

The study was conducted in the Singapore context. In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Singapore Government imposed regulatory restrictions, the “Circuit Breaker” from April 7 2020 to curb the spread of the virus infections. Most workplaces from the public service agencies to the private enterprises implemented work from home arrangements for most of the employees. The data were generated from an online survey that included self-reported text-based narratives in response to open-ended questions. Open-ended questions effectively allowed respondents to define the real-world situation in their perspectives. Salaried workers from both the public and private organisations were invited to take part in this research. Respondents comprise full-time, part-time and contracted employees from the diverse sectors. The final sample size of 131 respondents was used. A qualitative data analysis was employed to gain deeper insight into the workers' emotional reactions, including their personal experiences of organisational support and psychological safety, during the transition from office to work from home setting.

Findings

The qualitative examination, through thematic coding, reveals the phenomenon of emotion triggered by social comparison emotion and critical socio-emotional resources (i.e. task, flexibility, communication, health and safety and social support) during a health crisis. Specifically, the employees' emotional reactions were elicited from the perceived organisational support, in how organisation cares for their well-being and work contributions and, in turn, influence the psychological safety. For example, the approach of the online communication (as a form of organisation support) practised by the managers has implications on the different levels of psychological safety experienced by the employee. In addition, emotional resources can be interpreted as organisation support. The findings revealed that emotions such as anxiety, stress, unfairness, inferiority and vulnerability are triggered by perceived inequity and comparison with the decisions or resources of the referent others of higher level such as the management (upward social comparison emotion). On the other hand, the emotions of pride, empathy, shared goals and support are generated by the care, collective interest and comparison of the referent others of lower level such as the subordinate (downward social comparison emotion). This study adds theoretical depth to the phenomenon of socio-emotional resources and the implications of psychological safety and organisational support of different work groups in the organisation.

Practical implications

The practical implications contribute to human resource management practices to understanding the socio-emotional resources of the core and periphery groups. It is imperative for organisation to exercise equity in the allocation of resources and treatment between different groups (core and periphery). The implications of this study show the phenomenon of emotional responses arise from comparison within groups linking with perceived fairness. The managerial decisions and supervisor management style are key factors in promoting healthy emotion and psychological safety. Management style such as micromanagement and control were not favourable among employees, and autonomy, trust and empathy resonate with employees. During a crisis and major workplace changes, demonstrating employee care through feedback, timely and specific information sharing and participatory form of communication contribute to the positive perception of procedural and interactional fairness. In the initial phase of workplace change amid crisis, some element of control is inevitable. Supervisor support may come in the form of open communication in conveying the rationale for the need to exercise control in one process and flexibility may be accorded in another task. The empowerment of workplace decisions, open communication in shared goals and assurance and trust are critical in enhancing a high psychological safety.

Originality/value

This study examines the roles of emotion, psychological safety and organisational support among different groups of workers (full-time, part-time and contracted employees) in the context of COVID-19 pandemic. There has been scant study in examining the core and periphery groups relating to these research topics. The findings in this study reveal the phenomenon of emotions triggered by social comparison during the workplace changes and the display of different socio-emotional resources within groups. This qualitative research supported the past studies that autonomy in decision-making, supervisor support, employee care and trust affect psychological safety.

Details

Journal of Organizational Effectiveness: People and Performance, vol. 8 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2051-6614

Keywords

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