It’s no secret that knowledge is the currency of business, and with good reason. Traditionally, companies relied on physical resources to maintain their lion share of the demanding market and fierce competition. New equipment, new offices, or more employees were the catalysts for business growth. But not anymore.
Today, it’s more about collaboration and knowledge sharing. These two concepts are among the most valuable assets that determine a business’s success by giving your company a competitive edge. However, building a dream team that values these aspects doesn’t happen naturally.
Typically, the leadership teams within your organization has a significant impact on your employees’ willingness to share knowledge and collaborate with others. In fact, according to research, over 81% of business leaders agree that knowledge sharing plays a significant role in overall business growth. So, how can you inspire collaboration and knowledge sharing?
Establish a culture of collaboration
Your company’s culture plays an integral role in building your brand. Therefore, clearly articulating your values, mission, attitude, and behavior goes a long way in attracting and retaining top talent.
Generally, companies can promote a collaborative and knowledge sharing culture with daily tasks. For instance, openly sharing information or including everyone in the decision-making process is one way to go about it. Additionally, you can solicit input about the current issues and collect feedback for future growth strategies.
Creating an all-inclusive workplace environment with your employees makes them feel valued and encourages them to participate more.
According to Forbes’ leadership forum, inclusive teams make better decisions by up to 87% of the time and deliver 60% better results. However, it’s imperative to ensure the collaborative culture has options for everyone. For instance, some people prefer one-on-one collaboration, while others prefer remote contributions. Therefore, ensure that you have platforms that are conducive for everyone and still achieves the overall goal.
Revamp the hiring process
The hiring process is another critical area where leadership teams can encourage collaboration. Typically, a successful business ensures that its employees feel welcome from day one, to promote open communication and participation. You can adopt the following strategies to further inspire seamless knowledge sharing:
- Communication: Go above and beyond to provide information to your new hires. Let them know what to expect, when and why. Afterward, continuously seek their feedback, answer their questions and resolve concerns to ensure they feel valued and appreciated.
- Provide mentorship/shadowing: Mentorship programs enable new hires to develop confidence faster and understand the nitty-gritty of how the organization functions. Additionally, this accelerates knowledge transfer and kick starts productivity.
Recognize and incentivize
People crave appreciation. Similarly, appreciating and recognizing your employees provides a sense of belonging as well as makes them feel valued. Ultimately, recognition fosters a sense of meaning in their work, which improves workplace engagement, productivity, and better working relationships.
A proven strategy to inspire knowledge sharing and collaboration is public recognition of top performers, especially those whose accomplishments are tied to teamwork collaborations. The gist here is to share praise and congratulate high performers in front of their peers.
Provide useful, accessible resources
Okay, you have valuable knowledge or resources. But, is it readily available to all? If not, you can quickly fix this. For starters, you can document the process and invest in knowledge sharing platforms. Capturing and documenting relevant information promotes knowledge management. Typically, you should foster a culture of creating documentation about the internal processes and daily operating procedures to troubleshooting and customer support guides.
Moreover, investing in the right knowledgesoftware will allow any member of the team to find information quickly and easily. Generally, include relevant content, document, or videos or streamline the hiring process while encouraging everyone to contribute their ideas on an inclusive platform. Data repositories such as Basecamp can be a good start for your company in terms of knowledge sharing, open communication as well as interdepartmental collaboration.
Because employees spend almost 20% of their day searching for information, investing in a data repository is essential. In general, providing useful and accessible information or resources ultimately improves:
- Customer service
- Workplace efficiency
- Team collaboration
- Employee engagement
- Lead by example
Although inspiring collaboration and knowledge sharing is intended for employees and your customers, indirectly. Leadership demands you to be able to inspire, influence and set the direction for others. As a result, leadership teams must be at the forefront of this evolution. Your responsibility as the leader will include establishing knowledge bases and keeping them operational. Generally, most organizations have shared drives that consist of hundreds of how-to documents or spreadsheets. But, in all honesty, this isn’t a scalable strategy.
Investing in platforms such as Givitas allows your team members to ask for or offer help for the frequent scenarios where they can’t find what they need in the LMS or on Sharepoint. While it’s one thing to make Givitas available to your team, it’s another to lead by example and actively participate in setting a good example. Generally, cloud-based solutions offer more flexibility, intuitiveness and create a wealthy library of knowledge.
Besides streamlining operations and saving millions, if not billions, in expenses, knowledge sharing and collaboration improve all aspects of the workplace. They increase social interactions among teams, build trust, and enhance creativity when it comes to problem-solving and innovation.
All in all, inspiring collaboration and knowledge sharing depends on engagement, culture, and technology. Combine all three, and your business is set for success.
About the Author
Fazreen Razeek from Edarabia is extremely passionate about education technology. He contributes engaging content to various local and international publications about the top education facilities, study guides as well as how-to guides for joining the best universities in Sydney.