At my company, What’s Up Interactive, we have a Board of Advisors. The board is a group made up of CEOs and business leaders who help advise us on how to do a better and more profitable job for our customers and employees, and maybe have more fun in the process.
Awhile ago during one of our Board meetings, they were…shall I say, “in our face.” They were blunt about things that needed improving. It was tough medicine and driving home, I felt like I had been through the ringer.
At 2am (when I occasionally do my best thinking) it struck me that their feedback was exactly that I needed to hear. We did make changes and our company is better off today because of that. I’m sure it will happen again.
Are you open to hearing bad news? As a leader, do your colleagues have the confidence to tell you what you don’t want to hear?
I’ve worked at places where people were intimidated or even scared of the boss. About the last thing they’re going to do is raise some issue that will upset the boss. And yet that culture of fear is one reason companies decline.
At What’s Up Interactive, when we occasionally lose out on a piece of business, one of the hardest calls to make is to the customer to find out more about why we didn’t win. It’s a little unsettling for the person on the other end of the line, too. Sometimes we get a sugar coated answer about how they’ll probably call us for a future project. Other times, we get someone who is honest and gives us the straight scoop.
You know what? I can remember every one of those conversations and can tell you how our company improved because of it. I appreciate their candor, just like I appreciate when someone on our team comes in and says, “can we talk for a second?” and then speaks their mind.
Bad news isn’t as much fun as good but it’s more valuable for growth.
What's Up Interactive is a full-service interactive marketing and website design agency in Atlanta. What’s Up specializes in a variety of multimedia marketing solutions including: web development, social media marketing, search engine optimization, paid search marketing, and email marketing strategies. Find out more about us at www.whatsupinteractive.com.
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