We make sharing knowledge in the workplace easy

Lessonly's knowledge management software helps teams store, manage, and share important info. Jump into a lesson to learn more.

laptop screen
topic card
sales card

Sharing Knowledge in the Workplace

What is knowledge sharing? It’s something that every business should know, but not many actually do it. As a result, employees don’t work as efficiently because of a lack of communication, clarity, and information. This means that productivity and success can suffer. And while sharing knowledge in the workplace is an easy practice many companies don’t encourage or enable it.

Knowledge sharing in the workplace isn’t strictly an employee-to-employee practice. It’s also beneficial for team collaboration since it helps things get done faster and avoids miscommunication. It’s a sound practice to use organization-wide and is typically done by compiling a database of information and knowledge presented by individuals or teams.

In the workplace, it’s estimated that each new employee spends around 200 hours working inefficiently because they’re too busy trying to figure something out for themselves or asking their colleagues to teach them how to do something.

A large component of the overall issue is the surprising absence of people sharing knowledge in the workplace. It’s reasonable to think that many employees aren’t aware of how to share knowledge with others appropriately, or lack the tools and resources to do so.

Benefits of Knowledge Sharing

There are many benefits to sharing information, but individuals within an organization often struggle to obtain vital information or make it accessible to others. This struggle often leads to employees spending hours searching for information they could have obtained in minutes if the organization had a proper knowledge management process in place.

One of the most significant benefits of knowledge sharing is that employees can save so much time and effort in pursuing knowledge. Information becomes more accessible to everyone who needs it, whenever they need it. And they can access it from almost any location with the right knowledge management tools, which is especially important during a pandemic.

Even when they ask their colleagues for help, it’s estimated that 81% of employees still experience frustration at how difficult it is to gain information from their colleagues. Similarly, 25% of employees have expressed feeling overwhelmed when a colleague leaves because they took vital information with them, and it’s now inaccessible to others that need it.

That’s why it’s so important to educate team members on the proper ways to share information, encourage them to do so, and provide them with the tools needed. It can make or break any company, no matter the size. While big companies may benefit more, as miscommunication becomes increasingly likely for every additional person involved, small companies can also become more efficient and get tasks done quicker.

Product Mockup

Get answers
at your fingertips.

See How

Strategies to Encourage Sharing Knowledge with Others

Teaching employees how to practice knowledge sharing and providing them with knowledge sharing tools is an excellent first step, but it won’t be very useful if they don’t see a reason to practice effective knowledge sharing. They need encouragement, which means you may need ideas on how to provide them with that. Here are 5 of our best strategies for encouraging sharing knowledge with others.

Lead by example

Humans learn how to do something best when surrounded by people who are already doing it. Additionally, they’re more likely to want to do something if it means fitting in with those around them or in leadership roles. By practicing knowledge-sharing techniques yourself, you show your employees that it works and it’s what the company needs. Show them how you want things done by emulating it yourself and don’t be afraid to provide them with a few ideas for knowledge sharing activities.

Make time for knowledge sharing activities

Research shows that toddlers and small children are more willing to learn when the activity is made fun. Interestingly enough, most people don’t grow out of this behavior (even if it’s a subconscious response). It also ingrains a mindset that doing the task they’re being taught is something they enjoy doing, rather than something they’re being forced into. By creating and participating in knowledge-sharing games with your employees, you show them that it doesn’t have to be tedious.

Recognize and reward when sharing happens

It’s human nature to be reluctant to do things unless it yields some sort of positive reinforcement. So if your employees don’t directly gain anything from practicing knowledge sharing, they will be reluctant to do so. The reward doesn’t have to be something physical or expensive. Often just verbal praise is enough. So be willing to acknowledge and reward when your employees have practiced knowledge sharing correctly.

Create a space for knowledge sharing to happen

Even if sharing knowledge with team members is something that employees are willing to do, they may not always be able to. There may be workplace hindrances to knowledge sharing, whether due to time, distance, or other restraints. However, if you create a safe and efficient space for knowledge sharing amongst employees, you are showing them that you encourage this behavior and that you want them to feel comfortable doing so.

Invest in knowledge sharing tools

Once you’ve taught them all of the knowledge sharing best practices and encouraged them to share knowledge, you need to provide them with an ideal space to do so. You also need to give your employees the tools and resources to efficiently, accurately and quickly share knowledge with others. Of course, the main thing you’re going to want to provide them with is whichever piece of knowledge management software you think would work best for your company.

Knowledge-Sharing Topics

As we’ve established, knowledge sharing is important, but even companies that implement knowledge-sharing best practices don’t always know what topics they should use or focus on. Having the right knowledge-sharing topics can make your company’s productivity levels higher than ever before, but what issues should you include? While no knowledge-sharing topics for employees are guaranteed to work for everyone all of the time, here are a few examples of knowledge-sharing topics for you to consider.

Client and customer relations

One of the best knowledge-sharing examples is customer-related information in the customer service industry. Customer service teams often deal with repeat customers, but the customer service agent that had previously worked with a specific customer may not be available the next time they need assistance. By documenting and sharing vital information about the customer at hand, they have saved both the customer and their colleague from wasting time and making awkward conversations.

Competitor information

For sales teams, knowing stats, data, and current events in their industry and with their competitors is vital for closing deals. However, since there are many sales reps on a sales team, they likely have numerous conversations with prospects that feature competitor info or deal intel that the rest of the team should know. It’s also nearly impossible for anything to get done and be presentable without proper knowledge sharing.

Company specific information

While knowing your competitors and your clients are both very important, knowing the company you are a part of is arguably more so. Keeping your employees updated on the company’s goals, expectations, and any rules, regulations, and laws regarding their jobs can prevent any catastrophes caused by misunderstandings.

Lessonly Makes Sharing Knowledge in the Workplace Easy

If your company and its employees struggle to understand how to share your knowledge with others, you aren’t alone. Fortunately, the right knowledge sharing software has everything you need to not only learn how to share knowledge but to plan and create a way of doing so with maximum efficiency. And our newest product, Lessonly Knowledge, just so happens to be able to do just that. Jump into a quick lesson to learn more about what we have to offer.