No matter what business you’re in, you want customers to have faith in your ability to meet their needs every time. That’s at the very core of being successful.
The key to creating and fostering trust in customers often comes down to transparency. You want your customers to feel as though your business is an open book, and that they are a part of the story.
Transparency can be simple because it’s a matter of living up to the expectations customers have for your business. Yet it’s also complicated because it involves helping to set those expectations that customers have in the first place.
Building a more transparent organization involves creating an internal culture that encourages honesty and transparency as well as building stronger relationships with customers.
Transparency begins inside your organization, which means leadership must embrace the concept. You can’t expect your employees to embody transparency with your customers if there isn’t a strong culture to promote transparency internally.
An effective way to create that culture of transparency is to encourage your employees to communicate with management as well as with one another. You can do this by establishing an open-door policy and giving employees a platform for expressing their thoughts during meetings.
When you communicate with your employees, it can be extremely helpful to be clear with your messaging, avoiding corporate jargon and speaking plainly to your employees. Even if the news is bad, your employees likely will appreciate your honesty and internalize the spirit of transparency in their interactions with customers.
Creating a flatter organization can also help foster an environment in which employees are empowered to share their feelings. Organizations with too many levels of hierarchy can be stifling. Furthermore, these levels can cause confusion as communications can be garbled through the stratum of management. Streamlining your organization by eliminating unnecessary obstacles to communication can help information flow more freely and support a more transparent business.
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