"Organization charts and fancy titles count for next to nothing."
--- Colin Powell
If you find yourself with more free time on your hands today than a few months ago, get the book, "Am I Being Too Subtle," by Sam Zell. Great read about how he started and still runs (at age 75!) his multi-billion-dollar business empire. Without giving away too much, he runs his organization in a meritocracy way, meaning that the focus is on everybody having an opportunity to be their best. It creates a culture that is driven, creative, playful, effective, and smart. It gives power to those who want to succeed and who shares their ideas for the success of everyone.
Creating a meritocracy culture eliminates the need for individuals to hoard ideas or information for the sake of making themselves look good. It invites thoughts and ideas from others and rewards handsomely those who contribute toward the success of the business.
"It's not the honors and not the titles and not the power that is of ultimate importance. It's what resides inside."
--- Fred Rogers
If you're interested in creating a similar culture in your business, begin with eliminating titles. Also, don't allow there to be closed office doors. Zell said that when he had his office building remodeled, he noticed a pocket door to his office that he never knew existed. He used that same office for 35 years, but just never saw the need for a door.
Also, don't just develop an open-door policy, really live it. Invite others on your team to stop by anytime they have an idea, question, or concern about the business. You never know where your great business ideas will come from, so give them a chance to come to you. You don't have to have organized Monday morning meetings or monthly pow-wows. Just tell them to come by anytime to discuss whatever project or work is going on at the time.
"To me, job titles don't matter. Everyone is in sales. It's the only way we stay in business."
--- Harvey Mackay
People always talk about creating a team-like atmosphere, but not all businesses have it. Empower your team members to speak freely, to work on great ideas, and to not be afraid to fail. Certainly offer direction and correction when needed, but also celebrate even the smallest successes. Create a sense of belonging and you'll eventually see a difference in your team. They will begin to believe the action you are taking and get on board.
"God makes confetti out of our titles and accomplishments to celebrate the poor and the humble."
--- Bob Goff
Yes, you are the boss or you have placed others in charge, but if you want to have the Zell-like culture, don't let the titles go to your head or your manager's heads. Don't let there be a separation of "Us" and "Them" but a no-line approach of just "US." When you speak, others will begin to see that you are genuine and only want what is best for everyone involved in the journey.
"I hope I shall possess firmness and virtue enough to maintain what I consider the most enviable of all titles, the character of an honest man."
--- George Washington