Tell the Truth

Tell the TruthThis is a double “hat tip”. First to fellow EOS Implementer, Ken Ritterspach, who commented in his recent newsletter about comments made at our EOS Quarterly Collaborative Event (QCE) by another EOSImplementer. Second to that implementer, Dan Wallace,  who, in turn, was sharing a quote from a speech by Suzy Welch:

“Tell the truth. IN the meeting. Not in the meeting BEFORE the meeting. Or in the meeting AFTER the meeting. IN the meeting.”

You know how this works. You have been there. Your employees huddle around the coffee machine after the meeting in which you announced some change in policy. Some like it; some don’t. You don’t know. They didn’t say anything in the meeting.

You schedule a meeting with your leadership team. The sales chief talks with the marketing chief the day before and plans what they are going to tell you and what they are not going to tell you. The engineering manager asks for feedback on a promotion she plans on making within her department. None is given. Later the finance chief and the HR chief huddle and share their opinions with each other on why such a promotion is wrong, instead of sharing their point of view with the engineering chief.

Nothing But the Truth

Here is what Ken Ritterspach said about the quote,- “Imagine the impact on your team if you were at a point in your development where telling the truth in the meeting you are in was a reality, when everyone around the table is open and honest. Think of just the time alone you’d save, not to mention the positive impact on conflict resolution, problem-solving, personnel decisions, and the granddaddy of them all: trust. Open and honest. It’s a goal with far-reaching impact.”

Think about how much productive and effective your company would be. Read Patrick Lencioni’s Five Dysfunctions of a Leadership Team if you want some practical insight about what to do about this problem. See my earlier post for some insight on that book.

Photo Credit: Paul Downey

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