Adopting Organizational Transparency to Strengthen Company Culture

Tiffany Brown | May 17, 2020

Companies always want to come off as being open and honest with their employees, but the reality is that transparency in organizations varies dramatically. To build a culture of true transparency, this value must begin with leadership fostering open communication with employees, which in turn builds trust among your workforce. When looking to recruit and retain top talent, 87% of people want to work for a transparent organization, further demonstrating the need to adopt and strengthen organization openness. Once this value is instilled in your business, it takes consistent reinforcing to preserve that type of culture, even when it may be uncomfortable to do so. The more employees know and feel like they are kept in the loop, the more engaged and connected they feel with the organization

Follow these two steps to create a transparent organization. 

Demonstrate 

Communication is key to transparency and takes practice to get it right. Developing trust within your organization is directly related to communicating authentically, openly, regularly and honestly. When you demonstrate behaviors that align with those values, employee trust will grow in return. Coach managers how to become transparent with their employees, while reminding that topics such as performance reviews and personal matters should be kept private. Provide access to the right tools to facilitate communication, feedback and questions to foster a more transparent organization. 

Identify Answers to Relevant Questions
  • Do we have organizational alignment on our values that foster transparency?
  • Have we developed a coaching plan for our managers?
  • Do we have the resources and time allocated to coach our managers?
  • Do we have a dedicated space to communicate, give feedback and ask questions?
Select Appropriate Tools

Digital workspaces unlock many feedback channels that let you capture, listen and take action based on the suggestions of your employees.  Apps like 7Summits Ideas help you crowdsource, listen and respond to your people. Unleash your employees to influence the next evolution of your digital workplace, enabling their voices to be heard while enabling others to vote and interact with the submissions they like best.

Reinforce Behaviors

Making a concerted effort to adopt and strengthen transparency can be included in every decision. With repeated, intentional inclusion over time, these individual choices will gradually affect the entire culture of your organization. Reinforce transparency by encouraging leadership to praise managers and managers to praise employees when their behaviors reflect the transparency that aligns with your organization’s desired values. Provide avenues that allow employees to give honest feedback and ask tough questions. According to a study conducted by the University of Zurich, sometimes bad news is better than no news. Allowing information to be shared, even if it does not paint the prettiest picture, creates opportunities to solve problems more effectively from both an employee and leadership standpoint. By fostering transparency through authentic, open and honest communication, you’ll be better enabled to retain employees, create widespread organizational trust and instill feelings within the people in your company that each individual is an important part of your organization. 

Identify Answers to Relevant Questions
  • Do we have a framework and KPIs to measure our process and stay on track towards transparency?
  • Do we have a plan to recognize our managers and employees for transparent behaviors?
  • Do we have the resources and tools in place to capture and act on feedback and questions asked?
Select Appropriate Tools

Publishing landing pages in your digital workspace lets you build a repository where employees can leverage self-service to easily access the knowledge they need. You can also publicly respond to questions, letting users benefit from seeing your company’s official answer and preventing them from needing to ask the same question again. 

Your company can easily identify which areas of your business would most benefit from a one-stop location for questions and answers and configure your digital workspace to match those needs.

Employee Digital Workspace - Groups 

Developing an Organizational Digital Strategy 

At 7Summits, we’re experts at building digital workspaces on the Salesforce platform that strengthen workplace culture. Our experience in Change Management and Digital Strategy, combined with our pre-built Employee Digital Workspace community template helps us do that with more success and faster for our clients. Specifically designed to serve the needs of virtual workers, the components packaged in our digital workspace are fundamental to maintaining a collaborative and productive work environment, regardless of where colleagues are located.

While challenges may arise when trying to virtually enable communication, collaboration, and human connection within your workforce, leveraging a digital workspace will help to create a strong employee experience and drive business value.

Tiffany Brown is a Strategist at 7Summits leading digital transformation and user experience strategy through the application of design thinking and change management principles. She analyzes complex business problems, establishes innovative future-state visions, and builds actionable plans that ensure adoption and speed time-to-value.

Check Out the Rest of the 7 Cultural Shifts that Enable a Productive Remote Workforce

Read More!