Transparency, cornerstone of the horizontal enterprise, Management

Openness and transparency promote trust, initiative and fairness. They are the foundation of a horizontal culture. By being open, we show that we have nothing to hide. Mistrust disappears and people are able to build trusting relationships. If we want employees to be actively involved and fully committed to the well-being of the organization, we need to treat each other as competent adults who can access information about everything that is happening within the organization.

[…] Transparency is inviting people to dive into the real data, rather than pulling them away from it, even if it makes you uncomfortable. It’s about overcoming your discomfort with the possibility of being criticized and questioned. […]

Transparency practices require overcoming the tendency to treat financial information as taboo and view it as data. Your own attitude towards money and trust will be tested on issues of transparency and finance. […]

Detail costs to justify rates

When people have access to budget information related to projects, they can learn to integrate it and ensure they respect the limits imposed by those budgets. […] Here are three ways profit and pricing information can be shared.

#1. Share with employees

If employees have access to comprehensive pricing information, they can engage more in the details of what optimizes profit margins and pricing strategies. On the other hand, if employees are deprived of this information, they can rely on inaccurate assumptions and become suspicious.

#two. Share with customers

Some organizations have started using transparent pricing models with their customers. They break all forms of opacity regarding pricing and profit margins by specifying them from the start.

#3. share supply

Some organizations have procurement processes that indicate available budget upfront in their RFPs, RFPs, and quotes. Instead of playing cat and mouse around the budget, the organization and the supplier focus on the process and the possible approach within it.

Transparency applied to the world of training and events

A new phenomenon known as “conscious funding” is challenging conventional ideas about the cost of training sessions and conferences. Instead of paying a fixed amount initially, participants pay a nominal amount and agree on an additional cost to be paid later, based on the value they perceive in the activity, the financial data they have obtained from the activity, and their own financial capabilities. […]

Bold salary transparency

The trickiest part of financial transparency is compensation. The latter is at the very root of a hierarchical system, in which it is someone else who determines the value of your work. While the manager knows everyone’s salary, the employees don’t know their colleagues’. […]

Fitzii, a Canadian recruiting firm, recently adopted a transparent and self-determined salary policy. He did this by inviting all employees to write a letter to themselves explaining what salary they thought they deserved and then sharing it with a colleague to get feedback. Everyone prepared for a company meeting dedicated to discussing this policy. During this meeting, we went around the table and each person indicated how much they would like to earn. The numbers were added up, the total was compared with the available budget for salaries, and the difference was disclosed. A second round was then held, which allowed everyone to adjust their salary based on the information they now had. Interestingly, the total amount requested by the employees the second time was less than the budget, which caused the self-set salaries by the employees to reduce the amount of the increases requested.

Samantha Slade, author of “Horizontal Leadership”

The author

Samantha Slade is a Canadian entrepreneur, co-founder of the Percolab network, and an expert in social and organizational innovation. This text is taken from his book “Le Leadership horizontal. Establishing a non-hierarchical organization, one practice at a time”, Editions de l’Homme, 256 pages, 18.90 euros.

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