In an era with software and digital development, creating a culture of knowledge sharing is easier and just as important as selecting the best knowledge. Sometimes, the more knowledge you know, the fewer employees are inclined to share it. This will be where you, as a business leader, should intervene and make it right. Now, we no longer live in a time where organizations can thrive with siloed information, with only a few people hold the key to the castle.
Knowledge sharing will lead to organizational transparency, which in multiple studies has proven good for business. It promotes the healthy, sustainable growth of modern businesses, regardless of industry. Several reports have shown that business transparency - both external and internal - is very expensive these days. Clients prefer companies that are honest with them, and workers consider internal transparency one of the most important factors when considering a new job.
The principle of radical business integrity is the first step towards building an organization in which employees are primarily motivated to share their experiences with colleagues. When your company's ecosystem supports the free flow of information, you not only make it easier for your people to do a good job, but you also gain benefits when it comes to bringing in the best talent.
But this culture would require a good work environment so the employees would feel safe and comfortable doing it. That was because knowledge sharing is not just about creating a knowledge base or even setting up some internal wikis. Knowledge sharing culture puts people and collaboration first. There must have been a willingness of teammates to help each other out.
According to Slack, there are three things to cultivate a healthy collaboration culture: Leadership should lead by example, be accessible to employees; feedback cycles should be encouraged among employees, management, and departments; Psychological safety should be prioritized to ensure that employees feel comfortable sharing expertise with one another without fear of competition or job instability. It makes employees more open to what they don’t know.
The next step after making it a “safe zone” for your employees to adapt knowledge sharing culture is them actually learning how to do it. Practicing skills is a more effective technique rather than simple theoretical learning. The more you encourage your employees to work with one another to practice knowledge sharing, the more effective it will be rather than an interaction between them and wiki━which can possibly be out of date or lacking tacit knowledge. That is why you need to try to keep people engaged by designing any knowledge management tool that you invest in around a people-first philosophy.
Knowledge sharing culture is an employee retention insurance
When you practiced a good knowledge sharing culture in your work environment, you could avoid losing team’s productivity due to the lack of an instrumental member at work. Workers won’t hoard expertise, all the skills and expertise would be shared among them equally.
So rather than a single precious employee, you could have dozens of expert workers. A company that practices knowledge sharing culture makes for happier and more loyal employees who could survive a teammate’s departure. Employees will be vested in a company that creates a comfortable and positive work environment for them.
Increase overall productivity with knowledge sharing
Knowledge sharing will enable a company to learn from mistakes and increase employee engagement to the company. Employees’ professional growth can benefit a company greatly. Research around the world has shown that knowledge-sharing initiatives driven by a culture of learning and collaboration can naturally increase employee productivity as a whole.
When employees can benefit from a knowledge-sharing culture, they are less likely to face hardships alone and are more likely to collaborate productively and think innovatively. All of this can lead to new customer solutions or product offerings, keeping your organization competitive and successful.
Simply put, transparent organizations that support knowledge sharing are self-sustaining organizations: these multiply opportunities for growth while creating employee ownership and participation. Who among us would not want to invest in a cultural strategy that can afford it?
It’s time to embrace a knowledge-sharing culture. That starts with taking a good look at how your company’s knowledge management works and starts doing an evaluation. Don’t forget to also provide your employees with the tools they need to succeed and grow.
An organization that is actively involved in sharing knowledge is at the forefront of everyone. Spending energy creating this culture of engagement requires an ongoing focus that advances employee engagement and empowerment.
In TapTalk.io, knowledge sharing is a must. As a startup, it was an important thing to nurture. Our team works collectively as a family because of our transparency. Because of the collective work and the knowledge sharing culture, we are able to increase our productivity and build a healthy environment.
Hope this is helpful!
By Dominic Vedericho
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