Increase Transparency From The Inside Out

Share this post


Your customers and potential employees can tell a lot about your organization by what people are saying about you online. We no longer live in a time where the PR or Marketing Departments get to shape the external image of your company. Every employee is now responsible for helping shape the image.

  • The more transparent you are with your employees the more likely it is that they'll spread a positive message.
  • One simple way to be more transparent is to push leaders to share more often with front line employees.
  • It's okay to share information with employees that isn't fully baked. Sometimes sharing ideas that are still being flushed allows for feedback from employees who might be able to add value.

I can tell if your employees are happy, engaged, excited, and passionate with one little trip to And there is no way for you to control whether I’m seeing good or bad reviews.

Isn’t that scary?


I go to HR events where people are wandering around talking about the policies they have in place to control what employees are saying about the company on social media sites. Sometimes I’m even surprised at how incredibly hungry some of them are to find the magic wording that will ensure that employees aren’t spreading information about ‘the inside’ on the web.

But the truth is that we’re losing the ability to control what people are saying about us online. And we can fight it or we can embrace it but fighting it is a lost cause.

The best companies in the world saw this coming, this idea of complete transparency between leaders and employees, employees and customers, customers and potential customers. Years ago they decided that instead of trying to hide their dirty laundry they’d focus on cleaning it up from the inside out so that when employees started talking online they wouldn’t be ashamed about what they were saying.

Below are a few pieces of advice for how a company can begin to increase transparency from the inside out instead of from the outside in:

  • Make it a priority to share news with employees. Often times, the people who control the corporate communication are so close to the top that they assume people throughout the organization have access to all the information when they really don’t.
  • Don’t feel like you need to have all of the answers before you introduce new ideas or thoughts on the future of the company to employees.
  • Start asking for more feedback from the front line employees. The more you know about the obstacles your employees are facing the better you can tweak the inner workings to fix their concerns. Once you’ve solicited feedback make sure to be open and honest about what you’re doing with those thoughts.
  • Start holding managers accountable for being able to report back to leadership what the biggest concerns of the employees are.

Every small step you can take to create a transparent relationship between leadership and the front line employees will make a difference in what your customers are experiencing.

What are some ways your organization increases transparency?

About Marisa

Marisa Keegan is a leadership coach, trainer, and HR consultant for quickly growing organizations who are passionate about strengthening their employees, their brand, and their culture. She has helped lead the HR, culture, and engagement initiatives at two nationally recognized great places to work; Rackspace as Culture Maven and Modea as Talent Manger. She is an author at Fistful of Talent and Culture Fanatics. Marisa has her Masters in Industrial Organizational Psychology and currently lives with her husband and twin boys in Richmond, Virginia. Marisa can be found on Twitter @MarisaKeegan.


Picture Credit: Flickr, Urbanshoregirl


About the Author

Marisa Keegan


Subscribe to our blog