Learn to Embrace Greater Transparency
It’s an attribute most of us say we want. We crave authenticity. We admire individuals and companies who are transparent. No one wants to be known as someone who hides the truth or distorts it.
As I write this, my mind immediately flashes back to a conversation with someone who would definitely be described as transparent. He clearly had no filter between his brain and his mouth, spouting off stories that would make anyone wince. Dinner with him was, uh, quite memorable, to say the least. I learned things that I still wish I could unlearn.
But that’s the exception. Most of us could benefit from being a little more open, a little more transparent than we are today.
Are You Afraid of Transparency?
Documentary filmmaker Morgan Spurlock has been immersing himself in environments that most of us would never experience. Remember his movie “Super Size Me” where he eats McDonald’s for thirty days? It didn’t stop there. He also stayed in prison and worked a month in a coal mine. In 2011 he made a film about marketing and product placement that was funded entirely by sponsors. It’s called “POM Wonderful Presents: The Greatest Movie Ever Sold.”
Most companies that he met with did not want anything to do with the film. In fact, six hundred companies turned him down because they didn’t like the idea of having no control. But seventeen partners said yes.
“Honesty is the first chapter in the book of wisdom.” -Thomas Jefferson
Why did most companies turned him down?
They were afraid of transparency. Companies want to tell their own story. They don’t want someone else to unpredictably tell it for them.
And that’s understandable.
But the lesson that Spurlock teaches is that we should embrace greater transparency because it increases trust.
“A lack of transparency results in distrust and a deep sense of insecurity.” –Dalai Lama