When your employees openly share their knowledge, your entire organization becomes more collaborative and powerful. This sharing can take many forms, from verbal and digital conversation to explicitly sending data to providing access to information created by others. As a result, more knowledge is disseminated and reused. This leads to more informed decisions, greater business agility and enhanced value creation.
Don’t let knowledge just sit there, with no return being generated from it. Here’s how you can design a company culture culture that will more readily collaborate and share, regardless of where your information is currently stored or curated.
Stress the Importance of Sharing
Workers must know the value of sharing the right information with the right people at the right time. Give them a cause-and-effect analysis of conveying information as needed.
- Foster a mindset that sharing is power. Individuals who are unable to see the need to share within the company are not the most appropriate persons to incorporate into your knowledge-sharing team. On the other hand, provide appropriate rewards for those who do it well.
Trust is one of the most crucial elements behind a solid knowledge-sharing culture.
- Trust employees to think. People rarely take information at face value, if they understand the consequences of using the wrong material or they know that it has not been vetted. Furthermore, peers trust peers and value their content, so bottom-up messaging is often perceived as more valuable than top-down.
- Avoid knowledge hoarding. If only portions of an organization’s knowledge are reused or there is a lack of trust among co-workers, the result is knowledge hoarding. Information that is in the hands of only a few individuals can be dangerous, as they become overly powerful and may unduly influence decisions made by top management.
Beware of Information Overload
Information overload can hinder a knowledge-sharing culture. With the enormous amount of data flowing into a company, and the limited number of hours in a day, there’s only so much information an individual can disseminate. If this becomes a threat, you may need to readjust your approach and begin filtering information on the basis of keywords.
- Ensure relevance. Be sure information that is shared will help employees assist customers, build a better product, or close a big deal. Encourage crowd curation, communicating the reasons for employee and community contributions to participation. Users are more likely to take part when they know that they also benefit from the efforts of others. Identify content that should be officially curated due to popularity, and learn what information is missing, based on employee feedback.
Have the Right Tools
Team members must have the most effective tools to deliver content within the company. Listen to the needs of your knowledge workers, and evaluate what is needed to transform them into an efficient unit. Find the best tools for the long term, and train personnel to use them to consistently execute their sharing tasks.
The recruitment and workforce development experts at PrideStaff Fresno can partner with you as you build your knowledge-sharing culture – and establish the industry-leading team you need for today and tomorrow. Contact us to learn more.