safety has become an essential driver of employee engagement, effective
decision-making, strong team dynamics, and successful organizational
performance. It refers to the sense of comfort and trust that allows
individuals to share their thoughts, opinions, and ideas without fear of
negative consequences or shame.
Enhancing psychological safety during the
recruitment and selection process is crucial in fostering a positive and
productive work culture. When candidates feel secure in sharing their thoughts
and ideas without fear of judgment or backlash, they are more likely to engage
in honest and open communication, which can lead to better decision-making and
improved performance. As such, employers should also strive to be mindful of
any potential biases and work to ensure fairness and equity throughout the
So, what are the
cues that both employers and candidates should be aware of in order to ensure a
psychologically safe recruitment and selection process?
The first sign of a psychologically safe
workplace is the use of inclusive language in their job posting. The more
inclusive a job advertisement is, the more likely it will attract candidates
from diverse backgrounds. Some general rules for inclusive language include:
● Avoid language that mentions age such as
‘young’ or ‘energetic’.
● Avoid the use of specific pronouns, like
he/her. Try to say things like ‘The ideal candidate will…’ or ‘The applicant
● Include a note that mentions that you can
reasonably accommodate differently-abled people with any necessary support to
complete their tasks.
● Avoid any mention of race, ethnicity,
nationality, or other discriminatory terms.
2. Clarity versus
transparency creates lack of trust.
Candidates nowadays are looking for clear
answers to their inquiries in order to make an informed decision about whether
to join a certain company or not. When an employer is open and honest about the
company, its values, and the expectations for the role, it can help to build a
foundation of mutual respect and understanding.
3. Alignment of Needs
a great opportunity to put everything on the table and discuss what the
employee requires versus what the company is looking for.
For that reason,
some important topics to be clearly and openly discussed include:
● The level of
flexibility in the work schedule
● Whether work from home is applicable and
● The compensation and benefits package in
● Geographic location and percentage of
● Amount of teamwork versus solitary work
● Job duties and responsibilities and
These topics will
reveal how psychologically safe an organization is and how much they are
willing to meet employee preferences and requirements.
4. Talk abundantly
Some culture-related questions that can
be tackled during the interview include:
● How does the organization provide
positive support to make sure that employees have the time and space to fail
with perseverant attempts to reach success?
● Why do people stay
at this company?
● How does the company allow for moderate risk-taking?
● Are employees’
innovative and helpful ideas taken into consideration and implemented?
● How is feedback
shared and what type of development programs are available?
● What type of
management is prevalent? Who are the main decision makers?
5. Realistic job
previews are important because they provide candidates with an accurate and
nuanced understanding of what it is like to work at a company and in a
particular role. This can help to reduce misunderstandings and misalignment
between the expectations of the employer and the candidate.
previews can signify that during the interview, the employer:
● Provides a
comprehensive overview of the job duties
● Discusses the company’s strategy and the
role that the candidate will play in executing it
● Discusses the company’s culture and
values, including the importance of teamwork and collaboration
● Provides information about the team structure
and the candidate’s potential colleagues
● Mentions some of the challenges that the
candidate might face, such as tight deadlines and the need to be flexible in
response to changing business needs
safety is a crucial factor in the employee experience from recruitment until
the time of departure from a company. As such, companies should understand the
characteristics of psychological safety and integrate it into all its people’s
practices, beginning with attracting the right talents.