Establishing an Open Door Policy

Establishing an open door policy in the workplace can have numerous benefits for the company and its employees. 

What Is an Open Door Policy?

An open door policy simply means that all managers, regardless of their position, are available to listen to the staff. This approach gives employees the freedom to speak openly with senior team members and provides a safe space for them to ask questions, make suggestions, and highlight problems when they arise.

Open door policies improve communication and make employees feel valued and heard. This, in turn, creates more trust between employees and management, and boosts morale and productivity throughout the company, 

Establishing an open door policy can also provide valuable insights and feedback for managers and senior staff, which they can then use to improve the internal structures and processes they have in place. 

One of the key benefits of an open door policy is that it can help to solve problems before they escalate and can sometimes even head them off before they arise. A pervasive problem in workplaces is internal conflict, and open door policies can help encourage employees to raise concerns sooner rather than later, resolving them before they become serious issues. 

What Can Happen Without an Open Door Policy in Place?

When employees don’t feel like they can speak openly with management, it creates a barrier that can negatively affect the work environment. Staff can feel unheard and disadvantaged, and managers can lose touch with and become isolated from the workforce, which can cause a rise in workplace conflict and lead to unresolved issues potentially becoming major problems.

Closed-door activities can also create a barrier between management and employees as it can generate feelings of secretiveness, and can make it appear that managers are not engaged or interested in what is happening on a day-to-day basis.

Establishing an open door policy is an excellent step to remove any barriers and demonstrate that the company cares about the well-being and input of the staff and wants to support them.

How to Establish an Open Door Policy

Setting up an open door policy in your workplace is much easier than you may think. Here are some steps that you can take to make the transition easier for all employees:

  • Include it in the employee handbook make your open door policy official by including it in your employee handbook. By doing this, all staff will be able to access it to remind themselves of how it works whenever they need to.
  • Establish expectationsif an open door policy is a new concept to your company, ensure that everyone knows what it is and what to expect. You may choose to establish specific times when managers are free to speak, so daily activity is still maintained. Discuss how it will work best within your company and ensure that employees and management are comfortable with the process. 
  • Include escalation proceduressome things in the workplace cannot be solved with an open door policy, so steps should be in place that detail how managers will address more serious concerns. This could include involving HR or passing the problem along to more senior managers if necessary.

In addition, ensure there is a process in place to cover the topic of workplace conflict – employees should be able to talk to managers about negative issues; however, it is vital to ensure that it does not become a way to spread gossip or undermine others.

When first establishing an open door policy, there may be a few teething problems as people may need time to adapt to a new way of working, and it may take a while to see the positive aspects. However, the pros of an open door policy far outweigh the potential cons. Having clear boundaries in place that work with your business needs can help mitigate any issues that could arise in the future. 


Establishing an open door policy in your workplace can be a big change, but it can have many benefits. 

Communication is key in every relationship, especially in the workplace, and an open door policy can improve the culture of a company, as well as boost productivity and reduce staff turnover. Implementing it can cause some teething problems, but as modern businesses realise that their employees’ well-being directly affects their bottom line, can your business afford to get left behind?

open door policy

Share this post


We are here to help

You are not alone. Reach out to us today if you would like to find out more about The Revoke Programme.

The Revoke Programme is a leading outpatient treatment programme and is part of Ishmail & Associates Limited

Contact Us

Scroll to Top