LEADER’S FIELD GUIDE
Transparency is tricky in the work place, right? What is appropriate to share and what isn’t? Does your title dictate how much you share? How do you foster credibility if you are completely transparent? How do you foster trust when you aren’t being completely transparent?
The more you know, the more your risk.
There are many places we share information about our work and about ourselves: private meetings, corporate functions, and LinkedIn. Each venue allows for various degrees of disclosure. As leaders, if we reveal too much, team members can lose confidence in our ability to lead (like when the VP of Security jokes about keeping his or her passwords on sticky notes) or maintain confidentiality (like when salary is mentioned during the introduction of a new colleague). Yet, if we don’t share enough, we are seen as manipulative and unapproachable.
So, how do we determine the correct level of transparency?
- Start slowly and take cues from other respected leaders.
- Be aware of what is considered basic professionalism and culturally acceptable.
- Withhold sensitive personnel information and keep trade secrets, secret.
- Reveal what you envision and what you value, frequently and consistently.
- Disclose lessons learned often and make necessary repairs quickly.
- Share with an intention of kindness, encouragement, and development.
- Share stories that only increase the likability of all characters involved.
- Use self-deprecation sparingly, but be ready to laugh at yourself.
Transparency is essential to leadership! Being transparent earns trust and builds rapport, unless we share too much (exposing ourselves and businesses to unnecessary risk). Respected leaders avoid both ‘oversharing’ and ‘being too guarded’. They are trusted to lead well and maintain confidentiality. They are also seen as straightforward and approachable.
— Join a Synergy Group where we will discuss what the
Bible says about Transparency. —
|ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Michelle Sugerman, an Executive Business Consultant with Leading Synergies, helps high-performing executives refine strategy, inspire teams, and delight clients (specializing in information technology, project management, consulting, and franchise management). She also leads Synergy Groups, weekly 55-minute virtual business mastermind calls for REALLY BUSY Christians in leadership. Michelle lives in Colorado where she hikes fourteeners and enjoys gourmet meals with her loving husband of 21 years.|
SYNERGY GROUP MEETING
Welcome (~5 Minutes)
At the beginning of each meeting:
- Open in prayer to get focused.
- Welcome new guest(s) to the Synergy Group.
- Provide short introductions (end with guests).
- Share a brief summary of high-points from the Leader’s Field Guide (above).
Leadership (~15 Minutes | 00:05)
Be prepared to share from professional experience and ask follow-up questions.
- How do you determine the correct level of transparency in your work?
- What would you add to or remove from the list in the article?
- Give an example of transparency going badly…
Spiritual Growth (~15 Minutes | 00:20)
Apply Biblically-based and Christ-centered principles to your work and responsibilities.
- Read Ephesians 4:25: “Therefore each of you must put off falsehood and speak truthfully to your neighbor, for we are all members of one body.” (NIV)
- How do Christians answer a question with truth, when the truth might hurt?
- Discuss the reputation Christians have in our society as it relates to Christians being transparent with their beliefs.
Praise, Prayer, & Goal (~15 Minutes | 00:35)
Discuss recent successes and current business needs. Share what you are grateful for and request insight, collaboration, or help with accountability. Include a goal for next week based on your discoveries today! Prayer is an important part of seeking him first (Matthew 6:33). Some groups share a list after each meeting; then update one another throughout the week! Pray together now and for each other during the week.
Networking (~5 Minutes | 00:50)
Share announcements and make professional connections. You are invited to connect via LinkedIn and offline, too!
Challenge (At Home)
This upcoming week, strengthen your relationship by reading about, praying with, and listening to God.
- Read Matthew 10:18-20: “18 On my account you will be brought before governors and kings as witnesses to them and to the Gentiles. 19 But when they arrest you, do not worry about what to say or how to say it. At that time you will be given what to say, 20 for it will not be you speaking, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you.” (NIV)
- Journal about a time you have been ridiculed for your belief in Christ?
- Write about a time when you were prompted by the Holy Spirit (or heard someone else was)?
Leading Solutions for Leading Business • www.LeadingSynergies.com
Please share the Synergy Group Agenda with Guests and Members.