Organizations which share knowledge and information are better able to make good decisions, achieve desired outcomes, and stimulate change and innovation. In fact, according to Phil Geldart, founder and CEO of Eagle’s Flight, resource sharing is one of the seven cornerstones of teamwork.
Creating an environment that promotes resource and knowledge sharing takes some effort, but the benefits can be high yielding and long lasting. Following are some tips to help foster an environment of knowledge sharing in your office.
A study by SearchYourCloud found that it can take up to eight attempts for employees to locate the right search result when looking for information online. Setting up an electronic resource center can help colleagues easily find quality information instead of engaging in fruitless web searches. These repositories can be as simple as establishing a dedicated folder on your shared network.
Set Information Quality Standards
When deciding which information to include in your repository, define the criteria by which you’ll determine which authors or sources make the cut. For example, you may wish to green light organizations that publish evidence-based information. You may also want to include briefs, websites, or trainings offered by reputable higher learning institutions, government agencies, or professional organizations. Establishing these quality standards early on will ensure that your repository doesn’t fill up with information that is not valuable to your team.
Transparency in Sharing
As you add new resources, be sure everyone within your organization or department is notified of its availability. This inclusive practice will foster trust, elevate engagement, and remind your team members to share and draw from this knowledge bank.
Creating a culture of learning in your office strengthens your individual team members’ professional growth while simultaneously building a sense of shared community and social learning. In fact, exploring new concepts and data together helps create a healthy work environment that can attract fresh talent to your team.
Unfortunately, organizations often lose valuable employees to retirement as well as downsizing and funding cuts, leaving a knowledge gap in their wake. Knowing what type of training or tools your remaining team members may need to seal that gap can mitigate the uncertainty caused by the loss of their colleague.
Lastly, in order to energize and motivate your team, carve out some time during meetings to discuss the ideas presented in your most recently shared resources. Explore their merits and practical applications and brainstorm to see how that knowledge can be incorporated into the projects you’re currently undertaking. Chances are you’ll find something worthy of integration.