Why is there so much fear about transparency? Is it because there is a desire or expectation that we need to be perfect or that the thought of being imperfect is so unacceptable?

Reputation management firms have sprung up over the last few years in response to the outcry from people or businesses that fear or have had experiences of being slammed or defamed online. Once the statement is there, it is hard to eliminate.

Is that so different from what it used to be 20 years ago? We have always had cliques or groups of people who talk about someone else, a business, their products or services.

If you had a bad experience at a store, did you share your frustration and disappointment with other people? When you were doing that did you consider how your experience might spread rapidly throughout the community causing the business to suffer? After all, you had a right to your own opinion.

The major difference is that the store probably had no idea what was happening and how to stop it or correct it unless you spoke to them directly. There are a number of convenient excuses – we are in a hurry, we do not like conflict, we don’t want to hurt someone’s feelings or we are too angry to tell that person or business why we are disappointed.

When we see something online in black and white, there are no illusions about what someone is saying or how they think about us. We nay not know or understand why, unless we ask.

Maybe this is what is at the root of transparency fear. You might have to do something about “it” or accept “it” because you know what “it” is.