Saturday, January 31, 2009

Curious about Transparency: What Does It Mean to You? How Transparent Are You, Your Life and Your Business?

I think it's a good thing that there are bloggers out there watching very closely and holding people accountable. Everyone in the news should be able to hold up to that kind of scrutiny. I'm for as much transparency in the newsgathering process as possible.” - Anderson Cooper, American journalist

I chose “Transparency” for this week’s theme because I feel it is an “in” word right now – and also an important theme today for business and our depiction of our lives. President Obama used it often while campaigning and is promising that we will be experiencing government transparency.

I want to listen to speakers who are transparent and accountable. I want to read news that is transparent and accountable. I want elected constituents to be transparent and accountable. And, I even want those people whom I am meeting through social media to be transparent and accountable.

If you are like I am, we are tired of finding out that businesses and others have been covering up secrets and procedures. My disappointment is great when I hear and/or read about one more company or person that has lied about what has actually been taking place.

Bad things happen. But when a group or a person comes clean and admits a transgression, don’t we have greater respect for them? Once you have been following the so-called gurus on the Internet for a time, it becomes apparent – at least it has for me – which ones are transparent and accountable.

For this theme, I found few quotations and many were from politicians, so realize that as you read the following:
  • Life is filigree work. What is written clearly is not worth much, it's the transparency that counts.” - Louis-Ferdinand Celine, French writer
  • We should insist that governments receiving American aid live up to standards of accountability and transparency, and we should support countries that embrace market reforms, democracy, and the rule of law.” - Lee H. Hamilton, American politician
  • What passes for woman's intuition is often nothing more than man's transparency.” - George Jean Nathan, American editor
  • We do not have a functioning market in the true sense of the word in health care. That's a layer of transparency that's sorely needed in America.” - Paul Ryan, American politician
  • But what I hope for from a book - either one that I write or one that I read - is transparency. I want the story to shine through. I don't want to think of the writer.” - Anne Tyler, American novelist
  • If we want to truly regain the public's trust, we can provide greater accountability and transparency with a simple step. Let's start by communicating to our constituents about the votes we take.” - Melissa Bean, American politician

And, just a few more that make one think:

  • One man's transparency is another's humiliation.” - Gerry Adams, Irish politician
  • What I'm thinking about more and more these days is simply the importance of transparency, and Jefferson's saying that he'd rather have a free press without a government than a government without a free press.” - Esther Dyson, American scientist
  • Similarly, gender-equality, supremacy of law, political participation, civil society, and transparency are among the indispensable elements that are the imperatives of democratization.” - Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Turkish politician
  • A government operates and acts differently than a company. So all we want to do is get some transparency here and then determine if the deal should go forward.” - Mark Foley, American politician
  • It should strengthen investors' confidence. This is done through transparency, high quality financial reports, and a standardized economic market. This is not just for China, but also for the world market as a whole.” - Richard Grasso, American businessman

So, what do you think? And how transparent are you? I just posted “25 Random Things about Me” on Facebook in an extremely transparent way. Am I taking a chance? I guess any time we are posting, we are taking a chance. I would love to hear from you.