Aaron Dignan, quoted by smartplanet earlier this year:
Imagine playing a game where you only get feedback once a year in an annual review? It would be the worst game ever. And yet, that’s the game we play at work.
My last job prioritized production over team feedback. It was, of course, not by design, and nobody would have actually articulated anything to that point, but looking back I regret not speaking up. But the nature of the company was that projects were sold before the infrastructure to deliver them was in place, and the result was that we were - at least during my time there - always behind schedule. Efforts were made to emphasize team building and open communication, but when projects are late by as much time as they were originally projected to be completed in, it's difficult to put much energy into anything but hurrying the hell up.
In the end, I was complicit in these tendencies as well. I can distinctly recall the spacey way in which I would listen to my reports talk about their families; I absorbed as much as I needed in order to ask a question from time to time, but I wouldn't say I put a ton of effort into *really* hearing them. I was careful to provide positive feedback when warranted (and negative feedback when necessary), but our product's long term prospects were too hazy - and my own feelings about the company were too conflicted - for me to really engage in the discussions that I'm sure mattered most.