What’s the main intellectual capital of employees these days? The availability and sharing of knowledge.
A knowledge-based economy thrives on intellectual capital, high-level skills and circumstances that can tap into these easily. An environment where the sharing of knowledge is supported is always for the benefit of both the employer and employee – and the key to engaging and motivating employees.
It has been shown that cognitive resources available within a team will be under-utilized if knowledge is not shared. If knowledge is not shared, individual and organizational performance will hurt in the process. It’s also a case of grossly missing out on what each individual can contribute to the greater good of the organization.
The role of content
Content is a key way to spread knowledge. The easier the spreading of content is made, and the more thought is being put into it, the more effective sharing knowledge this way will be. Whether it is company content, which will keep the employee up-to-date on immediate work-related matters that can help them succeed better in their everyday work, or relevant industry content, which allows individuals to be better workers and professionals, employees can find and easily pass this knowledge on.
The role of technology
Technology can be used to make knowledge sharing and content curation a lot easier. The availability of technology will not cut it. Employees should want to contribute to finding and sharing knowledge, and this will happen if they’re
- Motivated to use the technology
- Know how to use it
- The technology is easy to use
If shared technology is adopted on a company-wide scale, employees have a knowledge hub to go to look for, find and share knowledge.
Creating a culture of sharing knowledge
Organizations should strive to create a culture where knowledge sharing is not an accomplishment but part of the overall structure and working methods. Transparency and face-to-face communication are necessary to building this type of culture. Knowledge is not just passed top to down; “New employees come with new ideas, which breeds innovation and change in organizations that have stratified processes and workflows”. Invest in knowledge sharing and allow your employees to make informed decisions and grow as thought leaders.
Enable every individual and the organization
Invest in your employees as individuals and as contributors to the company mission by providing them with the tools they need to thrive. Whether it is through sharing company or industry content, encouraging discussion or providing the right technology, employees can, by building their own influence and helping others, help the entire organization and become more engaged into their work.