Transparency is the Key to a Hyper-Engaged Workforce

Transparency isn’t a new phenomena in any sense: it’s the extent to which knowledge and information are shared between an organization and its employees. When employees are informed, they feel more engaged, but four out of five employees worldwide are still not engaged in the workplace. This tends to be because C-level executives are lacking transparency in sharing company details down the corporate ladder.

Transparency Built From Top Down
A transparent culture is built from the top down, meaning it’s your time to shine. Adopting a transparent leadership style can bring bountiful benefits to your organization including company culture, employee engagement, and overall productivity. A transparency-first mentality builds strong connections between employees at all levels. These relationships are the foundation of collaboration, empowerment, and trust within your organization. Read on to find out exactly why transparency is the key to employing a hyper-engaged workforce.

Transparency = Collaboration
A lack of transparency prohibits employees from effectively collaborating within the workplace. By being open and honest, you will show employees that a safe, approachable environment has been fostered. Having a collaborative working environment requires a shared purpose among everyone involved. This means that as an executive, is it essential for you to share details with each team lead and their team members.

All departments should be aware of what others are doing when it comes to the contribution towards overarching company goals and objectives. For employees, it also allows them the opportunity to be involved in brainstorming and planning initiatives. Ensure that employees voices are being heard and the organization values their feedback.

Another way to increase collaboration is to embrace both the good and the bad. Don’t be afraid to voice your shortcomings, share not only your personal mistakes but also the organization’s challenges and problems. Celebrate the accomplishments and successes that you have achieved collectively. This allows your company to grow as a team rather than individually. This sense of community will improve collaboration.

You could also start using employee communication platforms and project management tools. This allows for ease of knowledge sharing and communication. TechRadar released the best software for 2018. Many of these platforms allow for public boards and chats. This not only provides collaboration possibilities, but it also holds individuals accountable for task completion.

Transparency = Empowerment
When delegating, provide employees with details such as ‘why’ and ‘how’ the task needs to be completed and ‘the outcome of their actions.’ However, true transparent leaders don’t tell employees what to do anymore, rather they act as a collaborator, using their influence and relationships to ensure consistent behaviour by all.

If you communicate to employees why a task is assigned to them and how it contributes to the organization’s goals, they will feel involved, rather than confused, anxious, and/or unmotivated. Employees will appreciate the details and honesty, and this understanding will lead to an improvement in both the quality of work and productivity.

Employees who feel empowered, invest themselves in an organization. If you make employees aware of how their actions contribute to organizational growth, they are more likely to buy-in to the company as they feel a sense of purpose and belonging. This increases job satisfaction and reduces employee turnover. This sense of empowerment is developed by employees when you place a high level of trust in them by sharing with them these details.

Transparency = Trust
Believe it or not, 45 per cent of employees don’t trust their employer when it comes to them being honest with the details that are shared. The lack of trust is likely due to the lack of transparency. Trust increases both commitment and respect. You want to hire and retain employees who are invested in the organization both mentally and emotionally. This is important as it creates a motivator for employees other than their paycheques. One way to improve an employee’s level of trust is to follow through and prove yourself. If you say you’re going to do something, do it. If you are not able to do so, be transparent and explain why.

Employee engagement without transparency is like a beach without sand. Without being transparent, your employees are missing a key driver for engagement levels. This will hurt both your company growth and productivity. Employee engagement requires a working environment that is feedback-orientated and cooperative. Having the right tools and processes in place will be extremely beneficial during this strategy. 70 per cent of employees do feel engaged when C-level executives are transparent and continually share company details with them. This transparency not only increases engagement, but in return, builds collaboration, empowerment, and trust (which are culture qualities of high performing organizations). You cannot create a culture of transparency if it is not practiced. Practice what you preach and get out there and start implementing yours now!

What do you think? What are some results you’ve experienced from being a transparent leader? Share in the comments section below.

Marlina Kinnersley is CEO and founder of Fortay.ai, a culture-first platform that helps companies hire and retain diverse top talent based on their unique culture. Talent is matched based on values fit against a company’s cultural fingerprint for true culture addition. For more information about Fortay, visit Fortay.co, Twitter, and Facebook, @FortayApp, or linkedin.com/company/fortay.co.

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