Why Every CEO Should be Focused on Achieving More Transparency?
More transparency can help you hire and keep the most talented employees, reinforce your company culture and break down silos to increase innovation.
Businesses are reinventing themselves to deal with the dynamic challenges of the modern world. One of the main ways they are doing this is by becoming more social. They are encouraging collaboration, innovation, and a greater company community. Transparency is the underlying foundation for this change. Any business that seeks to address modern challenges in a social and more effective way must first create a transparent culture in the workplace.
Here are the 3 major benefits to a more transparent workplace:
1) Hire and Keep the Most Talented Workers
“People are the number one asset of any business, and without great people, companies are less equipped to do great things, ” says Teri Hockett, chief executive of What’s For Work?, a career site for women. There is no doubt that bright and talented workers are the driving force behind successful products and businesses. Companies are constantly seeking the most talented individuals to build teams that are superior to their competition. In today’s world, this means creating a business environment that is transparent.
What does a transparent business environment have to do with attracting top talent?
For starters, it attracts the young talent. The younger generations are being raised on social networks where users expressing themselves openly, share opinions, and engage in open debates and information exchanges with diverse groups of people located outside their immediate social circles. From Facebook to Twitter to Instagram, everything about the newer generations’ social tools involves sharing and openness.
In the workplace this translates into people networking with coworkers, sharing information and expertise across departments, and the ability to find the person with the correct skill set for the task at hand.
As the millennials start to enter the workforce, they will not be satisfied with rigid and secretive corporate structures. Young talent will demand a more open workspace.
In addition, a more transparent work place also creates a greater sense of belonging. When information is shared openly and when people feel free to express their opinions without fear of losing their jobs or upsetting their bosses, employees feel a much larger sense of being a part of something. Transparent businesses that respect their employees are much more likely not only to attract, but also to retain the best talent.
2) Reinforce Company Culture Through Improved Sense of Community
By creating a more transparent environment in the workplace, companies don’t just get a better understanding of who they are, but of who they want to become. Corporate culture does as much as anything to influence the current and future health and productivity of a business. This is why it is essential to promote a climate where employees feel engaged, not just with their work, but with their fellow coworkers.
Only in a transparent work environment can people truly feel that everyone is working towards a common goal and not simply looking out for their own best interest. An employee’s self interest then becomes inherently tied to the best interest of the company. People will understand their specific role within the greater group and see a clear path to how they can better themselves individually and their team as a whole. They will understand the reasons for certain decisions. And the work community will be all the stronger for it. Once the foundation for transparency has been set, the business culture will positively reinforce itself through its community of trustworthy and open employees.
3) More Innovation Through Collaboration
Transparent business communities break down unnecessary departmental divisions and encourage collaboration. A blog in the Harvard Business Review asked this question to different business executives: “what is the number 1 innovation killer at your company?” The answer: silos. Silos, or the silo mentality, as defined by Investopedia, is “an attitude found in some organizations that occurs when several departments or groups do not want to share information or knowledge with other individuals in the same company. A silo mentality reduces efficiency and can be a contributing factor to a failing corporate culture.”
Marc de Grandpre, senior vice president of marketing at KIND Healthy Snacks, elaborates further: “How can your company learn, grow and succeed if people are afraid to be themselves, voice their opinions and genuinely show that they care about the brand and team? Having the company become a sort of safe space allows for brilliant ideas to flow and for problems in your company to be flagged and addressed head-on.”
A lack of engagement due to the fear of expressing opinions or a feeling of being left out creates a silo mentality. This mentality inhibits collaboration by creating little or no communication across departments, which in turn kills innovation and overall company productivity.
The key to successful innovation is through transparency, sharing of knowledge across departments, and collaborating towards a common goal.
Only in a transparent work environment can the collective intelligence of a company be truly harnessed to innovate, collaborate, and produce the most effective results. Businesses that fail to emphasize this will fall behind their more open, innovative, and talented competitors.
Check out our other #transparency blog to learn how Enterprise Social Networks are the first step to improve transparency, collaboration, and innovation within your company.