Radical Transparency

What if you knew exactly how you were doing at work? What if your goals, bonuses, performance reviews, successes and failures were all available not only to you but to everyone in your company? How would you feel? Nervous... right? Scared or anxious? Probably.

This is what happens at the worlds top hedge fund - Brightwater, run by Ray Dalio, and he attributes his success to the radical transparency system. So perhaps it's worth thinking about a little further...

We are all nervous about getting bad reviews, ratings or feedback, but what do we really learn from good feedback? Not much, in my opinion. But imagine if everyone told you what they thought of your work or your performance, and instead of being upset or annoyed about what they said, you were fascinated by the comments because they gave you an opportunity to progress your career, and after all, isn't that why you read blogs like this one?

I guess that feeling open about being criticised may be difficult at the start, but I believe it's better in the long run. Personally, I'm asking every client for feedback online now, and have no controls over what they say - I don't want to either. If the feedback is good, well then good, and if it's bad - great, I get a chance to learn and improve. Hard at the start, but better in the long run.

The big problem we have in Ireland and something I believe holds us back is our indirect approach to tough conversations. We speak in vague and unclear terms - I can tell you first hand that many other nationalities find us hard to understand. "Why don't they just say what they want?". For example, you know the drill - if someone asks you if you'd like a cup of tea, you'll say 'no' at least twice before accepting. Although this is polite in personal circumstances, this method of interacting will be troublesome in the workplace.

Northern Europeans, in my experience, tend to be much better at this than us, they also tend to have much better economies - I'm not saying there is a direct correlation there, but I believe there is some crossover when whole nations act in a certain way.

Also, consider that in any group of people, someone will almost always disagree with what is happening or what is being said and if it's not said, you don't know about it and can't deal with it. But it's still there... festering.

Hard choices, easy life. Easy choices, hard life.
— Jerzy Gregorek