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Employees work in a small company

Transparency in Organizations/ Selling the Vision

Employees work in a small company where everyone knows everything about everyone and the rumor mill
runs rampant. Leadership gives both praise and reprimands in public. They frequently discuss
employees� personal affairs.
These scenarios illustrate two extremes of transparency in business. Maintaining the right degree of
transparency is a challenge for many organizations. Some leaders operate their organizations with an
open-book management style. Others believe in carefully maintaining the security of information. Leaders
must determine the appropriate level of transparency necessary for their organizations to stay healthy.
To prepare:
� Consider your experience with transparency of information and decision making in organizations of
which you have been a part, such as a business or a school. (Chose any)
Write a 2 page word documents minimum of an evaluation of the appropriate use of transparency in an
organization. Explain what you believe to be the most appropriate level of transparency for an

organization. Within your explanation, identify any instances in which transparency would not be a good
strategy. Also, explain how a leader might exert influence using transparency.
Be sure to include at least one additional scholarly reference to support your response.
Learning resources to use for this paper
� Northouse, P. G. (2013). Leadership: Theory and practice (6th ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.
o Chapter 12, �Team Leadership� (pp. 287�318)

Transparency in Organizations

Within every organization, there needs to be a proper balance between the level of
transparency and opaqueness. The leader of an organization needs to be able to identify a balance
that will be effective. In some organizations, pure transparency is what encourages better
performance. However, in others, having the same level of transparency creates a risk that may
pose a great danger to them and their employees as well. This paper champions the thesis that the
appropriate use of transparency in organizations depends on specific factors, hence, what may
work for one organization may not be as successful in another.
Generally, transparency is considered to be an admirable quality in organizations.
However, it has also become clear that too much of something can have its setback. Similarly,

when an organizational culture does not promote upward communication or lower level decision
making, performance may be affected (Northouse, 2013). Therefore, when an organization is
thinking of creating transparency, the protocol must follow a clear process that ensures that only
an appropriate amount of information is offered. There are some factors that must not be kept
from the employees, for example, strategies and intentions. If these factors are kept secret, the
employees will have no idea of what they are working towards. They cannot implement a
strategy that they know nothing about. Exposing so much information, on the other hand, may
pose a great risk to the company especially if the employees do not trust the organization. Such
critical information may be leaked to the competitors (Gilleard, 2014). Hence, although some
information must be shared to ensure success of an organization, it may also be relevant to be
careful on the amount released. Some factors may not be necessary for employees to know.
In an organization where a leader is trying to achieve change by gaining trust from the
employees, using transparency can be rewarding. Sometimes, all that is required for the
organization to prosper is a strong leader-follower relationship. In such a relationship, personal
connections are made through trust, appreciation, reliability, and care. This platform is what
must be built and effectively maintained; otherwise the connection with employees remains
weak, a factor that influences the level of success of the organization. In such a situation,
enhancing transparency is advised since it helps to foster a good relationship between the leaders
and followers (Mason, Hillenbrand & Money, 2014). This situation is one that may be
considered when deciding on transparency or opaqueness. In such a case, when the leader keeps
on securing information, the followers will create an even bigger wall between them and their
leader. This is because they will feel like the decisions made not in their best interests but the

selfish interest of the leader. Hence, transparency is encouraged to promote a better relationship
between employees and their leaders.
Transparency in an organization can also be used to encourage partnerships. It is true that
safeguarding some information is essential, especially because it may fall in the wrong hands.
However, the organization must also be in a position to expose some information about its
operations and performance so as to lure new partners, who must have an idea of what they are
getting into (Northouse, 2013). This is another instance whereby transparency may be considered
at a higher level.
In conclusion, transparency is not entirely encouraged for all organizations. There are
some organizations which may not perform so well when the management is transparent, while
others need it so as to ensure better performance. The reason transparency is sometimes limited
to some organizations is that the employees are not loyal as a result of trust issues and a ruined
leader-follower relationship.


Gilleard, M. (2014). The dark side of transparency. International Tax Review, 25(1), 22.
Mason, D., Hillenbrand, C., & Money, K. (2014). Are Informed Citizens More Trusting?
Transparency of Performance Data and Trust Towards a British Police Force. Journal Of
Business Ethics, 122(2), 321-341. doi:10.1007/s10551-013-1702-6
Northouse, P. G. (2013). Leadership: Theory and practice (6th ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.


Selling the Vision

Having a vision is a very important factor for an organization once it has been translated
into organizational success. This step is a very crucial leadership responsibility that must be
taken seriously. This is why leaders develop a strategy that they use to ensure successful
adoption of the vision within the organization. A vision can be translated into smaller objectives
that can be worked upon independently. This segment of the paper posits that having a vision
and translating it into organizational success is very crucial for any organization. Translating a
vision entails communicating it effectively to others, getting other members within the
organization to adopt it as their own, translating it into measurable objectives, and lastly
measuring whether these objectives are being met.

Communicating a vision to a group of organizational members can be handled through
the following steps.
Once a vision has been acknowledged, it is important for the organization members to
expose themselves to the issues affecting their success, and decide which ones are more
The possibilities for solutions to the identified problems must, thereafter, be explored by
the leader. Many can be listed, but only the best solutions must be considered.
Clarifying the vision needs to be a team effort, since it may have a better impact if the
employees gain ownership of defining the issue and coming up with solutions.
Before deciding on a final approach, the leader must first experiment with a few options so as to
ensure only the best procedure is chosen. Getting the employees to adopt this vision as their own
is one of the most effective ways of ensuring it is implemented effectively (Northouse, 2013).
This is why it is important also to let the employees take part in the processes of creating a
vision. The leader needs to give room for employees also to participate by suggesting the areas
within the organization, which they feel needs to be changed. If such a problem is acknowledged,
the employee will feel more encouraged towards acting upon the plan to implement the vision.
This is because the employee will only state what he or she feels like is causing problems.
Translating the vision into measurable objectives can be done with the help of employees as
well. The problem must have some underlying issues which result to it. Hence, in this stage,

these issues must be suggested along with the help of employees. After deciding on the major
issues, they can be handled one by one, and eventually the major problem will have been
handled, and the vision will also be implemented (Ilies, Judge & Wagner, 2006).
After each stage, it is important to measure whether the objectives have been met. This
can be done by analyzing whether or not the problem is still present, and to what extent.
Feedback from the employees should be welcome, as these are what will help determine whether
progress is being made or not. In an organization, the employees tend to know much more about
the issues causing a problem than the leaders. This is because they experience them long before
the leader can know that there is a problem. This is why the leader needs to work closely, and as
a team with the employees (Karaszewski, 2010). Measuring progress is important because it
ensures that when there is no improvement, the strategy will not be carried on to the next step
unless it has been handled.
In conclusion, the leader and employees need to work as a team to ensure that the vision
is effectively translated into organizational success. This starts by communicating the vision to
the members of the organization, and thereafter involving them in the process of creating success
out of it. Working with a bigger project can be complicated and time consuming; this is why it is
more important to divide it into smaller objectives that can then be distributed to teams.
Measuring progress is important to keep track of changes that are taking place.



Ilies, R., Judge, T., & Wagner, D. (2006). Making sense of motivational leadership: The trail
from transformational leaders to motivated followers. Journal of Leadership &
Organizational Studies, 13(1), 1–22.
Karaszewski, R. (2010). Leadership in global business environment through a vision creation
process. TQM Journal, 22(4), 399–409.
Northouse, P. G. (2013). Leadership: Theory and practice (6th ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.

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