In today’s dynamic world, the ability to be transparent in our communication while remaining considerate of others’ ideas is a hallmark of effective collaboration. Striking this delicate balance is a testament to our commitment to open dialogue and constructive teamwork. It’s important that board members be able to share ideas to collaborate and build an aligned point of view to address issues.
Many people think that transparency means televising meetings, or showing recordings of the proceedings. Actually, transparency is about sharing information openly and honestly. It involves providing clear insights into our thought processes, goals, and intentions.
Transparency must go hand in hand with sensitivity. Each person brings unique perspectives and ideas to the table. But when you make the process too public, you’ll encourage two behaviors:
- Some people will withdraw and not contribute their points of view to build alignment;
- Some will want to play politics and grandstand. They will make issues out of things that are not really issues for the sake of politicking and influencing elections. This, of course, has no place in a board meeting.
You see this all the time in the federal government where instead of holding honest debates, politicians arrive with pre-decided points of view on issues and make statements to the cameras.
Good board members meet with their constituents and explain the issues and processes used to achieve a decision. They will appear publicly at club meetings and virtual town halls and answer questions honestly and completely.
The key to successful transparency actually lies with effective communication after the board meeting.