Transparency. For something that’s a staple of business literature, it’s also a bit of a dirty word. On the surface, it sounds like a great idea, but it’s usually accompanied by thoughts of micro-managers and “Big Brother”. Sure, transparency is great for the higher ups, but what about individual contributors?
Fear not, because transparency is actually one of the most powerful tools for an individual within a company. From our research, we actually found that there was a 20% increase in goal achievement when goals were made public and socially reinforced.
With that said, here are four ways that transparency into everyone’s goals within a company can help employees succeed:
1. Accountability Goes Both Ways
At BetterWorks, we think about transparency as a window, rather than one-way glass. If OKRs are truly transparent, that means anyone, no matter their job title or position, has access to them. Yes, your manager can see everything you’re working on, but you have total visibility into their priorities as well. The two of you can hold each other accountable, working together to achieve your goals. Because you’re not working in a one-way mirror environment, this also means that no one can hide behind a bad process and everyone can be part of the solution.
2. The Power to Say No
Just because you set OKRs at the beginning of the quarter doesn’t mean everything will stay the same. Priorities change, new ideas come up and more and more work can get added to your to do list. This brings us to the second value of transparency—the power to say no. Without transparency, you may not have data to defend your bandwidth. With BetterWorks, you and your manager can have a data-driven conversation about work you can feasibly take on, or what you might need to shift to allow for a new priority.
3. Context, Clarity, and the Death of Micro-management
True transparency is actually the death of micro-management. Because of all the data available in BetterWorks, there is no need to check in obsessively for updates. All the data a manager needs about progress and status is accessible online and in the palm of their hand on a mobile device. BetterWorks is a snapshot of everything you’re doing and have done to complete your objective. This opens up the opportunity for higher quality check-ins and conversations. Have an update your manager needs? Simply add a comment and @ mention their name.
4. Authentic Recognition and Coaching
We’re saving the best for last. With true transparency, an organization democratizes recognition and coaching. Because everyone can see progress and outcomes, anyone can praise good work and help those around them get 1% better. Recognition and coaching don’t need to wait for a manager to take action to happen—it happens just in time rather than simply at the end of a year or quarter from all the people you work with giving you a three-dimensional support system.
Ready to unlock the power of transparency in the workplace? It’s easy, especially with the BetterWorks platform. First, come up with your 3-5 objectives. Then, explore your network’s open, collaborative objectives. That’s it—you’re well on your way to winning at work.
This post was co-authored with Matt Liguori, Customer Success Manager at BetterWorks.