Consulting with dozens of companies from every industry, I have made two observations you can take to the bank:
Genuine communication occurs only between equals
Secrecy frequently breeds corruption and abuse of power
In the absence of equality, you'll seldom have honest, open communication. You tell those above you only what you think they want to hear, and you tell those beneath you only what you think they need to know. This creates not only low levels of trust between individuals, but a growing gap between business reality and the world of the top executives, a gap that is endemic in almost every corporation today.
Similarly, with the lack of genuine communication, organizations become obsessive about controlling access to information, and secrecy comes to dominate corporate life. With secrecy, positions of power seduce even good people into taking undue advantage and abusing their privileges. This is important to remember ”even good, decent people can get caught in this dynamic. It's not a character problem as much as a context problem. And the context, as I have come to discover, is that of rank-based power and authority.