Transparency is the latest in a line of business buzz words.
And there’s a reason why it sounds sexy – because the assumption is that it helps create another of the latest “it” words, trust. We’ve got nothing to hide. All our cards are on the table. What you see is what you get. No deception here.
And while transparency is great – companies being straight, clear and honest about what they’re up to and how they’re doing, there’s something missing.
You know the one way window/ one way mirror – as seen in the movies when FBI are interrogating potential criminals – in some ways with “transparency” we’ve just flipped the window/mirror. Instead of employers watching/micromanaging employees, in transparent companies, employees can watch their employers. Which while great, is still half of what needs to be accomplished.
The issue that remains – can employees be transparent with their employers? Can they feel safe saying what opportunities and challenges they really see? Can they be candid (and constructive) and not canned?
Now if you had two way transparency – a clear window that opens, then there really could be huge understanding, communication, innovation and forward motion.
How many leadership teams are still interrogatively watching their employees? How many leadership teams have done the “right thing” and are sharing the financials, sharing the information and yet wonder why looking at a mirror reflecting the same faces and ideas on a daily basis isn’t resulting in significant improvements?