How many times have you heard a manager say they have an open door policy?
Though not as much of the management lexicon as it used to be it is still commonly heard.
I expect the reduction in use is partly due to the open plan environment, and partly due to the sanctimony it received by many who claimed it.
I was one of those ‘called out’ by my staff some years ago – they acknowledged my door was open physically but felt that was as far as it went.
It was such a great lesson.
“Have I ever seen an open door policy?”
Obviously everybody should know what is required? Right?
I expect the reality is otherwise.
Wikipedia and other links delivered pretty much what I expected – boring, stiff, follow the rules, and confined to managing ‘the event’.
Here’s my take -Part 1:
- Firstly you don’t need a door. Metaphorically anyone can close a door to communication whether they have a door or not. So let’s change the term to Open Policy.
- Secondly it shouldn’t be a policy, it should be a way of life. So now we have Open.
Now we can get to work.
Here’s my take on Open:
- You work here, let’s talk.
- If I am busy presently I’ll tell you but not push you away without scheduling a time or following through ASAP.
- I’m your boss’s boss. No problem, let’s talk, I won’t undermine them, but I need to understand why you are wanting to talk to me.
- I’ll find some way to show I can’t be disturbed right now.
- You want to waste my time, I won’t let you.
- I promise I won’t waste your time.
- I promise I won’t make any promises I won’t keep.
- I’ll use my professional discretion in terms of what stays here and what moves on.
- I’ll thank you, you’ll hopefully thank me.
- I’m authentic, try me.