Business transparency is a key factor in developing a more engaged employee workforce. Transparency leads your employees to trust upper management – this sort of trust is only achievable by openly sharing information throughout the organization. Fostering a successful transparent environment keeps employees engaged, focused, and motivated.
Transparency has become a very sought-after core value among today’s enterprise. As consumers, we have become conditioned to having access to real-time information in all aspects of our lives. As a result of having instantaneous access to almost any information at any time, employees expect this sort of transparency from their employers as well. Essentially, employees are the first line of consumers for a company and they expect the same courtesy and attention that you’d give external consumers.
Transparency Within Leadership
Oftentimes, it becomes routine for business leaders to keep only the people at the very top privy to important information, however, there are many advantages to sharing on a larger scale. When employees have insight into the company’s current standing and forecast goals, it creates a broader sense of ownership across the organization. What was once the revenue target only known among the leadership team, now becomes a common goal shared by all employees, creating a greater sense of community engagement and push toward executing these goals.
At Maven Wave, financial results and projections, new business highlights, and pipeline information are shared with employees at our quarterly All-Hands meetings. Maven Wave’s leadership team provides detailed insights on quarterly growth, revenue, EBITDA, as well as gross and weighted sales pipeline. It’s exciting for our employees to hear the company has hit target goals for the quarter and we celebrate our achievements as a team.
On the other hand, if revenue goals are missed or quarter end marks don’t hit as high as projected, sharing this information can work as a rallying call for employees to band together to meet future goals – rather than a cause for concern. Furthermore, transparency with financials and other company information (whether good or bad) creates an implicit bond of trust between the employee and employer. The openness of leadership disclosing this information allows employees to work towards identifying a solution together.
Building Trust With Employees
Trust in upper management has been highlighted as a key to fostering engagement. Trust is gained by being approachable, direct, and most of all, by being human.
“When followers trust a leader, they are willing to be vulnerable to the leader’s action, confident that their rights and interests will not be abused. Furthermore, organizations that experience greater trust in leadership and compete more effectively in economic markets and maintain organizational viability” (World Academy of Science, Engineering and Technology).
Part of our process in creating an open and honest communication stream at Maven Wave is through our performance management process, FUEL. Employees meet with a career coach (generally their direct line manager) and a career counselor (someone a bit more senior) quarterly throughout the year to discuss accomplishments and goals – both personal and those tied to the company “gameplan.” During these conversations, employees discuss areas for development, as well as receive feedback on their performance. These meetings are treated as an open forum for discussion and an opportunity for career mentorship.
Companies will struggle when there is a lack of trust across their organization. Employees who do not trust their managers will decrease in productivity and perform at a lower level. Communicating honestly and openly makes employees feel more confident in their projects, ultimately leading to higher levels of performance.
Encouraging Transparency Company-Wide
However, transparency should not only be exercised by upper management, but employees across the whole organization. Encouraging each employees to be open is a key factor in achieving a fully transparent culture – all employees should be sharing feedback, successes and company issues with each other; this is what will build a completely transparent organization.
A leadership team that is authentic in thought and action, and embraces an open door environment where all aspects of the business are laid out on the table is one that is certain to thrive. Employees want something tangible – to hear firsthand from authentic leaders about where you are headed as a company – to motivate and engage them to come along with you for the ride.
At Maven Wave, we strive to maintain a culture of trust and transparency for all employees. Interested in working with us? Check out our recent “Life as a Maven” video or see current job openings here.