The single most important quality a leader should demonstrate in this day and age isauthenticity. The world we live in has become increasingly transparent. More information than ever is available and accessible online and the way consumers and employees expect to interact with companies has drastically changed. Companies that embrace transparency can experience richer interactions with customers and employees, as well as increased profits. But in order for a company to be truly transparent, the CEO must be transparent; and for many leaders, that is challenging.
At Zillow Group, our entire business model and company culture is built around this concept of transparency. Openness is something I take great pride in as a CEO and is the genesis of my leadership style. The full formula to being a transparent leader is based on three qualities: empowerment, accessibility, and authenticity.
It all starts with aligning employees behind your mission as a company. There’s a lot of academic research about why it’s advantageous to have a mission-driven culture, particularly with millennials who are trying to connect with something beyond a job; they want a purpose, not just a paycheck. A mission-driven culture will allow you to attract better, more engaged employees. This is a big part of our company’s DNA. Everyone at Zillow Group is aligned behind one mission: “Power to the People: Build the world’s largest, most trusted and vibrant home-related marketplace.”