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Transparency matters

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« When are you "ready"?The importance of understanding the business »

Transparency matters

08/27/09

Permalink 11:46:39 am, Categories: IT Leadership, Business Leadership

What would you do if your manager came up to you one day and said "This great idea that the organization has been talking about for six months has finally been approved and we're ready for you to move ahead!" You'd probably say "Fantastic," unless you had no idea what he/she was talking about!

Often, businesses feel a need to keep things compartmentalized or "secret". This secrecy is often motivated by fear, greed, or a belief that nothing should be released until it is completely ready. The problem with this mentality is that the people who most need to be involved, those who know the most, are often left out of the discussion until the very end. Talk about starting a project off on the wrong foot!

As leaders, we have all been in the position of not being able to share full details of discussions for various reasons. But it is important for leaders to share as much as possible with those who are going to be impacted by a decision. Study after study shows that employees prefer to know the ongoing status of things (even if the status isn't good news) than to know nothing and then have news sprung on them all at once.

Keep your employees informed and involve them early in the game--be transparent. Secrecy rarely works and often generates more negative feelings and ideas than the actual topic being discussed. Not only will you be viewed as a more enlightened leader, your team will likely provide valuable insight and support when you need it most.


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Don shares his experience and ideas about how to get the most value from your IT function. Note: The views and opinions expressed here are those of Don and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of his clients or employers.

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