Help break cycles of negative team interaction expressing what is trust-making vs. what is trust-breaking.
This is #1 of 11 “ways of being” you can consciously adopt to foster team cohesion and grow the “fruits of emotional connection.”
These BE CARD traits are often featured in EmC Salon conversation programs online, our YouTube recordings, and other EmC Team Presentations.
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The word transparent has Latin roots dating back to the 16th century. It was first used to describe how easily light passed through objects.
By 1590, transparent had taken on its current figurative use—something or someone is easily seen through.
Being transparent does not mean to lack substance — quite the opposite.
Transparency is the condition of wearing your mettle and conviction like the second layer of skin for all to see.
As you explore the work-scenario below of a fellow named Cody, notice what bubbles up or is triggered for you about transparency.
Have you been in a circumstance where transparency was trust-making or trust-busting?
Will Cody’s story inspire you for more courageous, transparent communication?
Cody’s back at his old job. He has to deliver a presentation to an executive board. His speech has to include many things—facts, figures, projections, and calls for change.
Cody knows much of what he has to say will be bad news. News that, if delivered the wrong way, could easily be discouraging.
For the next three days, Cody pours over every minute detail of his presentation. Even though he’s been doing well at the company, he can’t
shake the feeling that what he has to say may put his career in jeopardy and create a disconnect with his boss.
Will I get demoted? Lose my job? They wouldn’t fire me over a bit of bad news…would they? After a few late-night pep talks with his wife and trusted colleagues, Cody’s satisfied with his decision to give the board the truth.
Rather than gloss over the unsavory parts of the announcement, he decides to Be Transparent.
With clarity and poise, he expresses feelings of regret, care, and concern on the matter at hand.
He takes the incentive to be the first person to deliver the news and doesn’t sugarcoat the mistakes that were made or the long road of improvement ahead.
There are many issues to deal with, including quality control and workman’s comp payments. He is confident, confiding, and direct.
As he gives the report, he repeats in his head,
I am here. Here’s what’s happening.
Here’s what needs to happen next.
Midway through Cody’s talk, a senior executive thrusts an angry hand into the air. He gives Cody a condescending look.
“Who are you to criticize my work? You’re preaching for an overhaul of
policies that were good enough for us five years ago, and they’re damn good enough for this company now.”
Cody’s gut drops and feelings of dread and doubt hijack his mind: Have I done the right thing?
He tactfully explains that many of the man’s policies were meant to be temporary, that the wear-and-tear on their usefulness is no longer viable for the company’s new direction. Well, that didn’t help a bit.
If this executive wasn’t an enemy before, he is now. The man makes a violent scene and leaves the boardroom, apparently seeing red.
Cody is flustered. He understands it was difficult for his colleague to hear this information, but he is also relieved that these harsh realities came to light.
For the remainder of his presentation, Cody works hard to sap all ambiguity out of his remaining points.
Although several more executives raise a defensive flag or two, the majority of those present support Cody for taking a position of care with bravery and strength.
Looking back on it now, Cody realizes his calls for reform helped the company reach unprecedented success.
Many employees and higher-ups were sad to see him leave for career advancement, and he was thanked again and again for reintroducing a sense of conviction and honesty into the company culture.
There was still a lot of work left for his old company to do to make sure everyone felt safe to be transparent.
Take a moment to notice what insights occurred, or triggers happened as you read and related to Cody’s scenario.
Journal or make notes if that will be helpful.
Desire an interactive experience to explore trust-building ways of being? Join our ongoing EmC Salon interactive conversations on Zoom.
To be notified of programs, contact us at emcteam@levelfiveexecutive.
To go deeper, please explore Mastering Emotional Connection Certification Trainings and custom EmC services at
levelfiveconnection.com — helping companies and work-teams integrate the leading-edge EmC (process)
and grow happy, creative, and connected work cultures.
Commonsense Governance Principles in Action: Succession, Compensation, & Asset Managers