I’ve been working since I was 15. For more than half my life I’ve had the privilege of working for others in a variety of organizations. Each job has taught me different life skills as well as those which have contributed to my overall skill set as a marketer and strategist. While each manager, director and team leader for whom I worked displayed different leadership qualities, both good and bad, I’ve been most baffled by those who sought to conceal some aspect of their work. Sharing is never easy, but it’s even harder to explain why you hid the truth.
Here are few of the situations I’ve encountered:
- The Program Director who repeatedly promised to promote me and others in our department, despite not having the authority to do so.
- The Small Business Owner who boasted that she paid her web developer less than she had to because he lived in an area where the cost of living was lower.
- The Project Team Leader who hires subcontractors to do the work but doesn’t tell the client.
Transparency isn’t just a buzzword. It’s about achieving clarity so that everyone, employees, clients and everyone in between knows what’s going on. Of course, most people either don’t want others to know what’s going on or fear letting others in. If you’re not honest with others, especially when they have put trust in you to lead them, you’re complicating things, not making them easier. Ultimately, the times that others have intentionally with held information, it didn’t make things easier, only harder to explain.
Now that I am working for myself, I am reminded to be transparent in how I operate and communicate. Being deliberate in how I approach clients helps me worry less. The more I share the easier it is to feel more in control. If I am up front and honest with everyone, I don’t need to hide anything from anyone.