Transparency for business

Save everyone time and operate your business by taking off all your clothes and encouraging your employees to do the same.

Current and potential customers can feel comfortable that your organization is hiding nothing. If you are providing services and/or software as a service (SaaS), transparency will speed up the timeline of trust. Today and even more so tomorrow trust will be critical to success.

Your ability to innovate is directly related to you attracting and retaining the very best people. Brands like Google and Cisco will always get top resumes. The way the rest of us do is by showing those leading job speakers what is really going on under the hood. Anyone that can help you get to the next level will do their homework. The more videos, blogs, and twitter’ers (etc.) they can find the better. If you are doing cool stuff they will be able to figure it out and will apply for your positions.

You ability to maximize relationships with partners, vendors, and investors, whether current or potential will substantially increase by showing them what is truly going on inside.

I would even argue that having your competition see this transparency is also to your benefit. You might find that by being so open with what you are doing your competitors are more comfortable in working with you. You both probably have something that you are better at than the other. Figure out how to leverage each other’s strengths so that you can both grow.

I’d love to hear what you think about being transparent. Benefits AND drawbacks.

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4 Responses to “Transparency for business”

  1. Jim Carini says:

    Ed, agree with your thoughts re: transparency. The benefits across an organization far outweigh any potential negatives (usually related to competitive concerns).

    Your post reminded me of an article I bookmarked a while back about Loic LeMeur “10 rules of success for start-ups.” (

    Number 2 on his list is this: Share your idea. The more you share, the more you get advice and the more you learn. Meet and talk to your competitors.

    This is a big part of what you’re talking about. Yet entrepreneurs often go the other route, essentially closing themselves off from the world while they build their product. I met with a company about a month ago who did the “design the product in a vacuum” approach and they were regretting it big time.

    Again the primary concern seems to be competitive reasons — they don’t want anyone to discover what they are doing and potentially copy the product and get it to market before they do.

    But in this day and age it’s pretty much true that “everything has been thought of.” So this strategy is a non-starter. It’s more important to execute quickly and maintain an ongoing dialogue with customers. Loic makes 2 other good points with respect to this:
    - Don’t wait for a revolutionary idea. It will never happen.
    - Launch test versions as early as possible. Keep improving the product in the open.

    Kudos for making this approach part of the culture of Total Attorneys.

  2. megquez says:

    I agree, having transparency for any business is actually a good thing whether or not if you are a public or private company you will gain people’s trust and also you can build up your credential especially if you are a star up company.

    I think part of the reasons why the economy is in such a turmoil is because many public companies did not have enough transparency and the credit rating agencies are too lazy to the accurate data.

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    Transparency for business « Edmund Scanlan

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