Communication from corner office to employees could be improved

April 6, 2012
Communication from corner office to employees could be improved

Few top-level business executives have time to get to know every one of their employees, but some organizational benefits could be derived from CEOs and CFOs who interact with other members of their business outside of the executive team.

A CareerBuilder survey released this week found that a considerable number of employees – 40 percent – have never met the CEO of their company. Employees in retail, IT and financial services are even less likely to be familiar with their organization’s CEO, and even fewer workers across-the-board do not know other C-level officers in their business.

“They need to find a level of accessibility that allows them to connect with employees, while on the other hand, dedicate the necessary time for building relationships with outside stakeholders,” Rosemary Haefner, an executive with CareerBuilder. “Employees realize their top leaders can’t know everyone on a first name basis, but they do expect their leaders to be a public symbol that embodies the organization’s values.”

While it may not be important for employees to understand the inner workings of their accounting departments or the exact annual profit-and-loss numbers, some degree of transparency on the part of the an executive team – in the form of communication with workers – could help the entire organization better understand the company’s position in the market.

Workers are likely to feel more invested in a particular company when their superiors engage with them directly and solicit feedback from them from time to time. To find business leaders willing to take on these responsibilities, in addition to their day-to-day tasks, companies can hire headhunting firms to conduct a financial professional search. Accessible CEOs may benefit companies more than CFOs who behave in that way, but such actions may still be appreciated by employees.

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