285183

#178405

Scott Horvath
Participant

Every Agency has it's own culture and subcultures, as Jeffrey pointed out, that will communicate in different ways. Some managers will share every detail of what's happening. Some will share only at the last minute when it's already become pointless to share the information (b/c others have figured it out already).

Sometimes employees tend to think that management is not sharing information with them because the information management IS sharing is not the specific information the employee wants to hear or is wondering about. For those of us that have internal blogs where leadership can post and employees can ask questions...when you offer that type of service, you create an expectation that you WILL answer and respond to every question. Those of us that deal with social media, daily, know very well that sometimes it's hard to respond to every single comment and sometimes you wait to see an emerging theme of questions to then address several of them at once.

However, to the person who is leaving the comment...if they're asking a question at the same time then they expect to be answered. By not responding, that one employee might:

  • get irritated at the lack of response
    ...which turns into...
  • "they don't even respond when you ask them a question" (when talking to a co-worker)
    ...which turns into...
  • "my management doesn't share information with me."

Maybe that's a shortened version of a longer process that leads up to management appearing to not share information. But when people don't have their questions answered, especially when it's on a leadership blog, it can quickly be seen as unresponsive, not caring, not willing to share, hiding something, etc. We know that's not always the case in every instance, though.

The job of a leader is to communicate. Even if there's nothing to say, there's always something to say to keep people informed such as, "Unfortunately, we don't know any other details right now, but we are pushing to get more information on the subject. As soon as we get more details about your questions, we'll post them here."

At least this way leadership can be seen as listening and responding rather than not saying anything at all.