Silos and Hoarding Information

Over a year ago, the workplace was full of active conversation amongst colleagues. For many places, this transitioned to an isolated workplace within one’s home. Some could think of it as that mime who is walking freely and all of sudden is caught in that box with the imaginary four walls. Stress and anxiety start to build as we recognizing a need to escape and being the only decision-maker to make that happen.

According to the Harvard Business Review, “Research shows that anxiety makes people more risk-averse in a crisis; as a result, they are less likely to seek out differing perspectives. They tend to fall back on actions and solutions that have worked in the past — what researchers call “threat rigidity.” The desire to try to bring things under control can also lead to a go-it-alone mentality.”

The mime in a box and the research conducted by the Harvard Business Review are prime examples of how silos are created and information-hoarding starts to evolve.

Just recently, what happened when an uncertain supply shortage was communicated at the start of the pandemic? There was a rush to buy up as much toilet paper and hand sanitizer that was available. With the uncertainty of job security, career survival starts to evolve.

Uncertainty triggers fear… fear triggers anxiety… fear and anxiety trigger self-preservation… fear, anxiety, and self-preservation trigger career survival… fear, anxiety, self-preservation, and career survival triggers the sprouting silos and information hoarding.

One of the top reasons a remote workplace can create silos is because collaboration is not at the fore-front; this needs to be re-introduced in our new current work environment by implementing opportunities that drive individuals to work together.  What about creating a project where certain tasks are assigned individually and then in order for the project to come together, it is essential for each individual to share their part of the project? Of course, leadership will need to have check-in points, as this may not organically transpire and may be difficult for some employees.

The end result of the project should illustrate the value and success that a team can have with sharing knowledge while promoting the team environment mentality and releasing the perceived fear and anxiety.

Let’s all work together to free that mime from the box!

Sometimes all it takes is an outsider’s perspective to identify trouble spots and areas of opportunity. To request a quote or book an appointment to discuss ways in which Flashpoint Training can help you identify areas of opportunity and ways in which you can support your staff, simply message us.