“I am heard, but I am not seen. If I cannot be seen, I cannot be successful.” The words uttered to me by a client last week, a General Counsel, at a corporation. When I asked the person to describe their experience, I was shown an organizational chart. The person, promised a seat at the table before taking a new role, was in fact blocked by an immediate supervisor who heard the ideas presented by the General Counsel but was an impediment to the GC’s ability to be seen beyond the current hierarchy. That supervisor reported up into another C-Suite executive who relayed every strategic departmental idea through to the CEO.
This is not uncommon. In most law firms, there are walls that can prevent all of us from being both seen and heard by all within an organization. As a CMO, I have both succeeded and failed at being heard and seen. It is why I act to ensure all voices can be seen and heard on my teams.