Services for organisations

Psychologically Safe
& Healthy Workplaces

Psychological safety is a shared belief held by members of a team that the team is safe for interpersonal risk taking; it is the perception that the team environment is a respectful, trusting and safe place to take risks (Edmondson, 1999, p. 350; Porath, 2017). People who lack a sense of psychological safety tend to shut down, often without realising it. They are less likely to seek or accept feedback and less likely to experiment, discuss errors, and speak up about potential or actual problems.

Paying attention to team’s level of psychological safety is worth the effort as it leads to better employee performance, improved safety and health, and greater employee satisfaction and commitment. Research shows that employees thrive in psychologically safe workplaces. Thriving employees are not only satisfied and productive, but are also actively engaged in shaping their own and the organisation’s future (Porath, 2016; 2017).

Aleksandra offers a range of consultative services and professional development packages for organisations focused on creating psychologically safe workplaces. She helps organisations to develop a documented and systematic approach to sustain a psychologically healthy and safe work environment by identifying and eliminating hazards that are risks to the workers’ psychological health, assessing and controlling risks that can’t be eliminated, implementing initiatives that promote psychological health and safety, and fostering a culture that promotes psychological health, safety and wellbeing.

Civility & Collegiality

Incivility (rudeness) can fracture a team, destroy collaboration, splinter members’ sense of psychological safety, and erode team effectiveness and productivity. Even relatively minor incidents of incivility or ruddiness leave an imprint, deflate employees’ confidence, destroy trust, and decrease helpfulness – even for those who aren’t the target of these behaviours (Porath, 2017). Research has demonstrated that as a result of being exposed to incivility working memory tends to operate slower, performance decreases by 25 percent, creativity decreases by 30 percent, and the ability to pay attention to critical information decreases by 27 percent (Porath, 2016; Rafaeli et al., 2012).

Civility is a potent behaviour many leaders want to master to enhance their influence, effectiveness but also to enhance their teams’ performance, collaboration, reduce turnover, and achieve greater customer experience. Civility is unique in the sense that it fosters psychological safety, a key predictor of performance. It lays a strong foundation for employees to feel comfortable to speak up, share ideas and innovate. A little civility goes a long way, enhancing a team’s performance and creativity by increasing the amount of psychological safety that people feel in the workplace (Porath, 2016, 2017).

Aleksandra helps leaders to make civility the norm in their teams. She offers explicit civility training what covers core civility skills, explores new ways of interacting, discusses potential situations in which workgroup members are likely act uncivilly, and helps participants to problem-solve practical solutions on how to maintain composure and behave civilly in emotionally charged situations. Aleksandra’s training programmes focus on helping leaders and employees to learn how to listen fully, give and receive feedback, work across differences, and deal with challenging personalities. She also supports teams with negotiation, stress management, crucial conversations, and mindfulness.


Employee engagement is a fundamental part of any organisational intervention. It refers to the positive behaviours as well as attitudes leading to enhanced organisational outcomes. Aleksandra’s goal is to improve individuals’ engagement and relationship with work. She helps organisations to define its unique organisational culture and focus on the core strengths and competencies to reinforce organisational systems and create a more effective way of working and achieving business outcomes. This is done through conducting systematic data collection and analysis, facilitation of new understandings that lead to better solutions, sharing relevant psychological research and theory, and designing and delivering targeted, workable, and effective solutions to address organisational challenges. Aleksandra’s approach encourages open communication, trust, flexibility, understanding, and responsiveness from both parties: individuals and organisations. It helps to make a difference in employees’ engagement, collegiality, wellbeing and performance.

Research / Scholarly / Creative Works

Gosteva, A., & Zhuravsky, L. (2020). Building psychologically healthy workplaces: Practical strategies for promoting civility and fostering employee wellbeing. [Workshop for the New Zealand Psychological Society Conference]. New Zealand.

Gosteva, A., & Zhuravsky, L. (2019, August, 28). Motivational interviewing in health care: Strategies for evoking and strengthening employee’s motivation toward change. [Conference workshop for the New Zealand Psychological Society]. Rotorua, New Zealand.

Gosteva, A., & Zhuravsky, L. (2019, November, 29). Leading through complexity: Motivational interviewing for evoking and strengthening employee’s motivation toward change in healthcare organisations. [Conference workshop for the New Zealand Psychological Society]. Auckland, New Zealand.

Sutton, G., & Gosteva, A. (2019, September, 19). Narcissism in the workplace. [Presentation for the New Zealand Institute of Organisational Psychology]. Christchurch, New Zealand.