Listening to Employees: a Lesson for Korea?

Hot on the heals of  Stan O’Neal’s resignation, Citigroup’s CEO has just resigned.

This is a very interesting article from Harvard Business Online

It’s interesting because it shows how companies can learn from employees in particular posting on a company incident.  There are some really interesting comments on the recent incident and how the company tripled its trading risk under O’Neal’s stewardship.

What stuck out to me (and to Gill Corkindale who wrote the post) is how passionate these employees are and how it’s the employees, the bedrock of the company, who could help turn this around for Merill Lynch.   No more so is employee relations critical as in Korea; according to Edelman’s 8th annual Trust Barometer 2007, the most important way to build trust among Korean employees is to ‘listen’ to them (58%) over the next highest rating activities to build trust: communicating about financial performance (53%); business strategy (42%); or demonstrating CSR activities (41%).

I also found the following blog post comment interesting from the article re: Stan O’Neal’s leadership style.  The strict hierarchical way in which traditional Korean chaebol are set-up (and business in general) means that often the leader never gets the opportunity to listen – employee are too fearful to speak to top management about what’s really going on.  Is Merill Lynch’s demise a lesson for Korean companies? 

“If a leader leads through intimidation, people will tell him what he wants to hear, NOT what he needs to know. He will grow more and more out of touch with reality and risk will increase exponentially until something catastrophic happens”


6 Responses to Listening to Employees: a Lesson for Korea?

  1. Dog training says:

    Very interesting… as always! Cheers from -Switzerland-.

  2. Idetrorce says:

    very interesting, but I don’t agree with you

  3. Keith Morrison says:

    Thanks Idetrorce. I’m undecided on the issue of whether it is a lesson or not. I’d love to hear more of your thoughts.

  4. nagarjuna says:

    how to improve to our skils in communication

  5. […] listened.. I mean really listened before you […]

  6. SWAN says:

    I thoroughly enjoyed this post

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