My previous post was about why people don’t share their knowledge. This post is about the benefits of sharing knowledge. Knowledge sharing provides numerous benefits to both individuals and organizations.
Personal benefits: Sharing your knowledge improves your personal effectiveness, skills, and well-being. Sharing what you know:
- Helps you learn: by doing research, synthesizing multiple viewpoints, and crystallizing ideas
- Improves your personal brand by showcasing your expertise
- Creates demand for your expertise: increases opportunities for sales, revenue, appearances, publications, etc.
- Encourages people to request that you apply the information you shared; knowledge is information in action, and this is what people actually want, not just written documents
- Comes back to you in the form of help when you need it
- Gets others to also share, which may ultimately benefit you
- Increases your personal morale; people feel better when they can help others
- Strokes your ego: when people ask for your help and then thank you for providing it
- Strengthens your knowledge: others can confirm, point out flaws, or improve what you know
- Aids your career: you can advance based on a reputation for getting results and helping the organization succeed
Organizational benefits: Knowledge sharing delivers value by:
- Avoiding redundant effort
- Avoiding making the same mistakes twice
- Taking advantage of existing expertise and experience
- Making scarce expertise widely available
- Showing customers how knowledge is used for their benefit
- Increasing and accelerating sales
- Accelerating delivery to customers
- Enabling the organization to leverage its size
- Making the organization’s best problem-solving experiences reusable
- Stimulating innovation and growth
Please read Stan’s additional blog posts offering advice and insights drawn from many years as a KM practitioner. You may also want to download a copy of his book, Proven Practices for Implementing a Knowledge Management Program, from Lucidea Press. And learn about Lucidea’s Inmagic Presto and SydneyEnterprise with KM capabilities to support successful knowledge management programs.
Virtual teams, including those focused on knowledge exchange, are widespread. There are many effective virtual channels for knowledge sharing.
Team spaces are collaborative workspaces designed for teams to share documents, libraries, schedules, files and other building blocks of knowledge.
An organizational intranet is a key part of a knowledge management program; knowledge managers should be sure to leverage the intranet for KM purposes.
Knowledge managers should incorporate the principles of good usability into the KM system user interface.