Communication and empathy are key in ensuring the organisation does not get bogged down by silo mentality
Work-life balance is a myth.
The world we live in is a much complicated one now than ever. While the internet has made the world smaller, it has also changed the way we interact. With increasing vulnerabilities, uncertainties, complexities and ambiguities in the world, what internal resources can we tap into so that we can effectively integrate between work and personal life? As both deal with emotions and decison-making.
The business dictionary defines silo mentality as a mindset present in some organisations when certain departments or sectors do not wish to share information with others in the same organisation. This type of mentality will reduce the efficacy of the overall operation, reduce morale, and may contribute to the demise of a productive company culture.
Many managers and senior executives attribute the above challenges to lack of training in leadership or skillsets. If you think that these are the root cause of silo mentality, think again! People get frustrated with silo mentality behaviours of their peers and managers. They become disillusioned and disengaged when their plights fall on deaf ears. Mediocrity, mistrust, unaccountability, and finger pointing soon become the new norm, “infecting” new hires and widening the divide among departments.
So what can we do to address the root causes of silo mentality? Unfortunately, there is no quick fix. My personal experiences as a developer and facilitator of corporate mindfulness leadership programs have shown that with daily mindfulness practice, genuine and sustained positive behaviour change can take place between three to four months.
The irony is in this fast paced world, we want instant results. Does it mean that we give up trying? Not at all!
Below is what we can attempt to do to handle silo mentality in organizations
- Be clear about what we want to communicate. Pause and allow others to ask questions.
- Be brave to ask clarification questions when in doubt.
- Come from a space of “What are your concerns?” when working with people. By doing this, we are seeing them as another human being with their own vulnerabilities, needs, and concerns. I have tried this approach and most of the time it works wonder in connecting with people.
There are probably twenty dozens tactics out there. However, unless top management takes a keen interest to practice them, people are not going to believe in what they say.
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