Information Sharing: 3 Scenarios
1. The first scenario assumes that information is power. As power is not shared, one must be careful not to scatter authority, and to play the concentration of information within the department, centralize knowledge, and practice voluntary retention.
2. The second scenario encourages practicing the principle of diffusion-retention of information. This is a selective dissemination of what we have decided to share. In other words, we seem to share everything, when in reality, we do not. Important information remains the monopoly of the one who holds it.
Nothing is easier than to affix the stamp "confidential" on a document to restrict the release of specific information we select to retain. This attitude expresses a true paradox that requires a clear choice. Executives are challenged to find a balance between the need to control everything and give full confidence to their collaborators.
In this second attitude, leaders distribute information with scarcity in difficult times, followed by a more generous distribution in the absence of problems - as if trust were conditional.
3. The third scenario is the position of oscillation between centralization in case of conflict or crisis followed by a quiet period of decentralization is in opposition to a participatory approach. The latter encompasses sharing information within a network of motivated collaborators. Exchanging within and through a network remains the only means capable of implementing change, accelerating innovation, bringing fluidity and flexibility, strengthening employee engagement, empowering employees and increasing their reactivity and performance.
The degree of fluidity of information in business does not occur by accident. It reflects a managerial style where the behavior of employees is in perfect harmony with the flow of information within the company.
In an authoritative environment, the employee will adopt an attitude of dependence based on its hierarchy: ’They decide, I execute what they decide. I take no risk.’
In the event of centralization-decentralization attitude in relation with information that is shared, employees will play the game of independence: ‘Since there is no trust, I must act as if there was trust and do only what I am told to do.’ Employees are passive stimuli- dependent employees.
Finally, only the information network can establish the rule of interdependence between motivated employees. Why? Because interdependence is synonymous with decompartmentalization in the company. It leads to performance through anticipation and proactive responsiveness.