December 17, 2018
King's Corner

It Goes Both Ways

Earlier this year, Kenway Consulting went through an extensive reorganization activity, with the major outcome being four corporate strategies to drive our decisions for the years to come. My personal favorite among those strategies is the one titled, “Culture of Bi-Directional Privilege.”

Essentially, our philosophy is that we want each Kenway employee to feel privileged to work here. That’s one direction. And, we want to ensure that each Kenway employee is a privilege to employ. That’s the other direction. This bi-directional privilege is a consideration we ask of ourselves. But it got me thinking, could this philosophy work outside our four walls?

What if I viewed all my relationships through this bi-directional lens — what might that mean?

When a vendor offers me their services at an intentionally inflated cost expecting a negotiation to ensue, finally resulting in a “fair price,” do I feel privileged that they tried to gouge me initially? No. Do I feel privileged with the outcome? Not really.

When I receive a document for review from a colleague and I return it to them with tracked changes, but with no explanation as to the rationale for my changes, do they feel privileged to have had that experience with me? Probably not.

For every action, before the reaction, there is a moment we have to proactively contemplate a response. What if that moment of contemplation afforded me the opportunity to ask two questions? One, does my pending decision make me feel privileged to know this person and, two, will my pending decision likely make my counterpart feel privileged to know me? If either answer is no, it probably isn’t a good reaction.

This doesn’t mean that everyone will always be happy with every single thing we do. However, if we give honest consideration to bi-directional privilege, we will ensure that all our decisions are well-intended, defensible and unselfish. In our current world climate, well-intended, defensible and unselfish are pretty darn good.

To learn more about Kenway’s Culture of Bi-Directional Privilege, contact us at

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