Teams perform better when people are sensitive to each other. It might sound sentimental, but it is now backed up by data. (Hurray! We love when caring is backed by research!)
Google poured three years of research into discovering what makes high-performing teams work. After sifting through variables like background and group structure, it came down to feeling psychologically safe with co-workers. This means you feel like you can be real without having the group embarrass, reject or punish you.
They found two significant ways safety is built. One is that everyone in the group has a voice: literally, each person has roughly the same amount of talking time each day. Two, people on the team are more emotionally sensitive to each other. They can tell how each other is feeling by non-verbal cues such as tone of voice and facial expression.