Leave workers in the dark at your peril

Open, honest communication with employees boosts satisfaction, bottom line
By Jocelyn Brodie
|Canadian HR Reporter|Last Updated: 01/14/2011

Transparency is at the heart of good corporate governance — it implies open, honest and accountable communications. Executed well, it builds confidence in management’s decision-making capabilities and the reliability of an organization’s performance reporting.

For public companies, stronger corporate governance, better internal controls and increased financial transparency are standard agenda items, from the executive boardroom to the employee water cooler. For external stakeholders, particularly investors, transparency standards and practices are established and carefully monitored by regulators and other third-party authorities.

However, where employees are concerned, it is left to management to determine the “what, when and how” of performance communications. Practices vary widely and outcomes are mixed. And in an uncertain economy, where organizations and jobs have slipped away in record numbers, transparency has become an important and controversial issue.