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Relational Transparency: Importance in Leadership

Trust and relationship transparency between leaders and employees plays a huge part in employee wellbeing, satisfaction, and engagement.

An APA study recently showed that employees who felt valued by their employers were more satisfied with their job (92% of employees). The problem, however, is apparent when we look at the percentage of employees, 33%, who don’t feel their employer is truthful or honest with them. 

Without trust from leaders and management, it’s difficult to develop a healthy workplace culture. Lack of trust and transparency can make employees feel more on edge, uncertain about how they’re being assessed and what their relationship is with their team leaders, who ultimately have a lot of power over their careers and identity in the company.

Below we’ll look at why trust and relational transparency are so important in the workplace. 

What is Transparency in the workplace?

Transparency is about authenticity and honesty in the workplace. It’s about having a genuine relationship with employees where team leaders are open and honest, whether it’s good news or bad news. 

Beating around the bush, abrupt surprise meetings, and uncertainty in your employee-managerial relationships are all recipes for a fraught, anxious workplace. 

When you lead honestly, you’re establishing the core tenets of relational transparency, which are essential to any healthy relationship. 

Relationship transparency can be defined as “valuing and achieving openness and truthfulness in one’s relationships.” In the business world, this means being clear, consistent, and reliable about your policies and the way you go about upholding your policies, and it’s about being genuine with employees.

When employees feel like you will be open and honest about your concerns or employee-related issues, they won’t be worrying about their performance or roles in the workplace while they’re busy completing tasks. This allows them to breathe easy and focus on the work that matters to them. 

What outcomes can be expected from relational transparency

In what ways can you and your employees expect to benefit from relational transparency in the workplace? Here are some of the most significant ways you can see improvements in the workplace from being more transparent. 

  • Employee Advocacy
    • A big part of receiving trust and transparency from people is giving trust and transparency. When team leaders are open and honest with their employees, they can expect to receive that honesty and openness back to them. They can also expect to be well-liked, appreciated, and valued, which can lead to increase in employee satisfaction, loyalty, and brand recognition. 
  • Managed Expectations
    • Communication and trust will allow your team leaders to more readily manage expectations from both ends of the employee-team leader relationship. If you’re transparent with your employees, you will be more clear about your expectations on the various tasks that need to get done. And when employees feel like they can be honest with you, they will reach out if they need more time or assistance on a project, which allows you to reassess expectations and make appropriate adjustments. 
  • Employee engagement/performance increase
    • When employees feel valued and respected in the workplace, they will be more satisfied in their work. They’ll build closer ties to their team leaders and their co-workers. With more relational transparency from team leaders, you can expect to see more productive, engaged, and active employees in the workplace. 

Transparent leadership

So what are some clear and concrete ways that you can be a more transparent team leader in the workplace? Below we’ll look at some actionable steps that can enable you to be more honest, genuine, and respected in the workplace. 

  • Be clear and consistent about your policies. Policy making is an effective to streamline and standardize company expectations
  • Hold regular meetings, both as a department and a company, to keep employees in the loop on any important information or concerns that team leaders might be maintaining
  • Keep the feedback loop open by constantly communicating with employees. When you approach employees and provide feedback, good or bad, at a consistent rate, they’ll be more open to give that kind of communication in return
  • It is so important for managers and the HR team to have an open door policy with employees. You want employees to feel like they can bring up any concerns at any point in time, and underscoring the availability of your team leaders will provide them with that space to be open and honest
  • You should hold regular one-on-one meetings with employees. Whether this is monthly, bi-monthyl, or quarterly is up to you and your needs, but staying on top of the progression of your employees is key to maintaining a healthy and productive work environment. 

Crosschq believes in transparency

Crosschq believes in transparency in the workplace and in the hiring process. 

Our 360 reference check technology takes the tediousness, subjectivity, and lack of accuracy out of the reference check process. With Crosschq, you have a trusted solution that will gather candidate reports within 48 hours, streamline efforts without leaving your ATS, and build a new source of qualified and active talent. 

Try Crosschq today to find the right fit for your company and build diverse, winning teams.

Mark Ko

by Mark Ko

Content Writer

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