Psychological Safety Newsletter #19: Inclusive Meeting Practice

Training, Workshops, Exercises and Tools

Psychological Safety Newsletter #19: Inclusive Meeting Practice

Thanks for subscribing to the psychological safety newsletter! This week we have “Kintsugi”, inclusive meetings, story telling and Dissent Cards.

Also, a very warm welcome to all our new subscribers in healthcare! Thanks so much toHelen Bevan for tweeting about psychological safety and this newsletter; as a result our psychological safety movement is gaining even more momentum!

In the Workplace:

This is a fantastic guide to inclusive virtual meeting practices (including lectures and seminars) by the team at The University of Nottingham. It was produced in consultation with neurodivergent staff and students as part of a STEMM-CHANGE grant awarded to Lauren Marsh and Danielle Ropar. This really is an excellent resource, and even includes this great proforma to include in agendas, which allows everyone to understand expectations for a meeting.

 This week’s episode of YNG BLK HR podcast takes a look at what psychological safety is, how it manifests at work and how to build resiliency when psychological safety is threatened.
 I love this piece by Nora Jones about the power of story telling in incident reviews – why it’s so critical to consider people and their stories fundamental to this practice. Don’t just look for the technical “root cause” (there isn’t one), but celebrate the insight generation, dissemination and training by people in our organisation.
Autistic Masking is a psychological safety mechanism made up of complex layers of physical, emotional and social actions which an Autistic person is driven to use to self-protect and project an acceptable version of who they are. This is a great piece that helped me understand how Autistic Masking needs to be reframed as a response to trauma.  

Here’s an excellent video by Evan Smith of Solvemate called “Kind Engineering: How to Engineer Kindness” – a talk at this year’s LISA21 Conference. It covers practical tips for becoming a kinder engineer through the following topics: code reviews, psychological safety, giving/receiving feedback and honesty in the workplace.

Theory, Research and Opinion:

Kintsugi is such an amazing metaphor for learning from failure and being safe to fail. This is a super piece by Jen Stine of Mint Chip Studios about Kintsugi, the Japanese art of putting broken pottery pieces back together with gold — built on the idea that in embracing flaws and imperfections, you can create an even stronger, more beautiful piece of art – and how that reflects psychological safety and learning from “failures”.

This is short, and so deeply true that it hurts. Mr Rogers would have been an amazing manager, and is truly the king of psychological safety.

Check out this really fascinating piece about healthcare teams in training simulations. In situ simulation has highlighted an issue – what level of psychological safety do real world healthcare teams (including facilitators) bring into their simulation-based learning?  They can’t suddenly ‘create’ psychological safety in education if healthcare teams have dysfunctional hierarchies and poor relationships in their real clinical work. Aim for ‘safe, not soft’ in design, delivery and debriefing of simulation.

Things to do and try:

This is a great practice written up by my friend Chris Baynham-Hughes, inspired by David Marquet in his book “Leadership is Language“. Dissent cards can be a really effective way to encourage constructive discussionssteer away from consensus bias and build psychological safety.
The NHS Horizons team really are amazingThis is a superb collection of great sketchnotes, from “10 things fab leaders do” to “Conferences vs Unconferences”. Every single one is downloadable to use in presentations or posters, and there’s a readable text version of each one. 

This week’s poem:

Drink Your Tea 
by Thich Naht Hanh

Drink your tea slowly and reverently,
as if it is the axis
on which the world earth revolves
– slowly, evenly, without
rushing toward the future;
Live the actual moment.
Only this moment is life.


We’re working on a psychological safety meetup. Roughly once every month, we’ll have a speaker on a certain topic, and an opportunity for us all to collaborate, workshop ideas and practices, and maintain a safe space for psychological safety! More details to come, but if you would like to be involved, head over to the community: and sign up here:

As always, check out, for more resources and articles. 
Read previous newsletters here, and get in touch if you’d like to share something in this newsletter.

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