Openness is becoming increasingly central to the ways groups and teams of all sizes are working together to achieve shared goals. And today, the most forward-thinking organizations—whatever their missions—are embracing openness as a necessary orientation toward success. They've seen that openness can lead to:
Greater agility, as members are more capable of working toward goals in unison and with shared vision;
Faster innovation, as ideas from both inside and outside the organization receive more equitable consideration and rapid experimentation, and;
Increased engagement, as members clearly see connections between their particular activities and an organization's overarching values, mission, and spirit.
But openness is fluid. Openness is multifaceted. Openness is contested.
While every organization is different—and therefore every example of an open organization is unique—we believe these five characteristics serve as the basic conditions for openness in most contexts: