…. and don’t shy away from it and don’t shoot the messenger who sees it first.

Thanks to Apryl Childs-Potter (Hyphen Market Support) for this analogy.  Apryl is a pretty serious cyclist, often going on rides with other cyclists.  When riding one has to see the glass in the road, and all riders are encouraged and supported for shouting out about some glass in the road, because it helps everyone else in the pack to avoid it and the flat tires that come with it.

Great organizations like it when someone notices and shouts out about the obstacles and problems they are encountering.  They bring these “hassles” to the table and discuss how to solve them, without shooting the messenger who identifies the hassle.  They see the hassles and the people shouting out about them as contributions and contributors.

Their attitude is this,  “we get a chance to solve something, before it gets bigger and more difficult to solve.”

Unfortunately the merely good organizations (and worse) play wack-a-mole with these things.  Their cultures are more about the leaders being right than getting things right.

This is a key part of “Level Five Leadership(Jim Collins)” that all great organizations have and need to develop.  More on this in a future post.

But right now you need to decide if you want to see the glass in your road.  And how do you reinforce that this is good thing.  And that the messengers are contributing.

That is if you want your organization to become great.