Berkeley Lab’s IDEA strategy aims to unlock potential and innovation, and create a culture of welcoming and belonging within our teams. Part of this strategy is to understand the research on team psychological safety, and how the findings can benefit the Lab as “the home of Team Science.” Psychological safety is the shared belief that the team is safe for interpersonal risk-taking. This type of safety affects our ability to fully contribute as a valued team member, and impacts engagement, retention, and morale. Furthermore, the ways in which implicit biases and microaggressions show up in the workplace can also affect the team's level of psychological safety and trust.
In promoting the "A" in IDEA for accountability, we are encouraging Berkeley Lab colleagues to learn more about becoming an "Upstander." An Upstander is someone with integrity and courage who: 1) recognizes when something is wrong; 2) respectfully intervenes to educate and promote civil and professional conduct; 3) and raises awareness about the behaviors to (hopefully) prevent the situation from happening again. It is important to note that the intent is to educate, knowing that Lab colleagues are at different points in their learning journey as well as to extend grace to each other as we learn.
Review the resources below to learn how to help build an Upstander culture, and develop the skills needed to speak up (including instances when fellow employees need an ally). Situations requiring an Upstander can range within a spectrum, e.g., from one-off comments reflecting an unconscious bias, to deliberate or indeliberate microaggressions, or egregious or severe behaviors such as bullying, harassment, discrimination, or retaliation.
Through active listening and promoting appropriate conduct, colleagues can learn the skills to help create a happier, healthier laboratory. Acts of respectful intervention, civility, and setting a professional example with our own behaviors can begin to move the needle on creating a positive workplace culture.
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Our learning journey as Upstanders: “Extending Grace as we Learn” (Berkeley Lab) (1 min)
5 Tips for Safely Reopening Your Office - Harvard Business Review
Workplace Bullying: How IBM Stops Employees from Crossing the Line (case study) - IBM
Upstanding Allies in Diversity (case study) - Law Business Media
Harvard Law Dean Tells U-M Crowd the World Needs ‘Upstanders’ - University of Michigan
Micro-affirmations - Micro-inequities - Journal of the International Ombudsman Association