As we all sit in our cube farms and work vigorously, making the machine that is corporate life slowly chug on down the road, we sit and wonder what is it that we are not seeing? Hearing? The things that continually go on at the executive level that we don’t know about, or even at the regional level that we don’t hear about. Why is it that we don’t have open communication? Why is it that we have to have an “inside man” or a “leak” in the system to get information about what we are doing as a company. This week I’m focusing on transparency, or a lack thereof in corporate companies, let’s talk.
There a few big takeaways from being transparent to your employees. The first reason for transparency is trust. If a husband is out doing something and he doesn’t tell his wife, she will begin questioning what he has been doing in his spare time. When the husband is honest and candid in relaying the information, she becomes relieved. When she senses that he is lying it begins to damage the trust that was once between them. The same happens in a business environment. When a company is open and candid with their communication their employees will not be able to foster a trusting and open relationship with upper management. The same happens with customers, which brings up reason two, loyalty.
Loyalty between a customer and a business is built over time. It is not something that manifests overnight, but through repeated successes and wins with a customer and company. What companies are you loyal to? Why? Customer service? Products? Think about what keeps you coming back and think about how you can replicate that in your respective jobs.
The third takeaway we have with transparency is cooperation. When people know what is going on, they are more likely to work together. This is out of trust for one another, respect, and in general being on the same page as all other groups in your organization. Being transparent in your actions not only increases cooperation, but it improves culture and environment. People are more willing to help each other and grow the group as an organization rather than as an individual. As I have spoken on in the past we must rely on each other if we want to survive as a species. We are better together (Simon Sineks new book).
The problem with transparency is it’s not easy. Upper management is who controls where “important” information goes or does not. They control the flood gates. Through transparency we can see that we function better as a group. We can focus more on helping each other rather than helping ourselves. Upper management is also the one who set the vision of where the company is headed. So ask yourself, in a company lacking transparency, do you want to continue walking blindfolded?