When it comes to communication, most companies are relying way too much on explicit knowledge. Explicit knowledge is things that are easy to write down and share with others, like how to send an email or how to use a piece of software.
In reality, this really only scratches the surface of the knowledge and expertise your employees bring to the table. Instead, you should be doing everything you can to extract and share your employees’ implicit knowledge.
If you’re still relying primarily on explicit knowledge, here are 3 reasons you need to rethink the way your organization communicates.
1. Information Overload
It’s very easy for people to be overwhelmed when trying to consume too much information at once. When you’re dealing with hundreds of emails, dozens of meetings, and many people to answer to, you’ve got very little time and energy to spare during the week.
Explicit knowledge has been traditionally shared through emails, town hall meetings, or some kind of intranet portal. While they all have their place and can be effective ways to share information, they can also have a very limited impact on holding people’s attention and helping them actually retain what’s being shared.
2. Not Enough Time
Building on that point, there is so much noise throughout the day. In the age of information, it’s very difficult for people to recognize what’s important and there’s not enough time to digest it, understand it, and share it with others.
3. Explicit Knowledge is Limited
Companies have been structured around explicit knowledge for decades. If it can’t be communicated in a slide deck, then it’s probably not communicated at all. However, that really limits the potential of knowledge sharing because 80% of a company’s knowledge is actually implicit, not explicit.
How Implicit Knowledge Changes the Game
Building a system for capturing your employees’ implicit knowledge and sharing it across your organization can revolutionize the way your company does business.
We’ve seen time and time again where enterprise-level organizations have company-wide announcements, employee newsletters, town hall meetings, and digital signage – and yet every employee will still say that communication in that company is terrible.
It’s not that this company isn’t communicating. However, there are two issues in this example:
- They are not communicating the right information
- They are not sharing it in an effective way
People get frustrated when information isn’t passed along or when things are happening in the company that they don’t like or understand.
The problem is, most of us have been programmed to understand that everything should be easily explained and understood and that 95% of important information is explicit knowledge.
However, you can give an inexperienced salesperson all of the product info, sales scripts, and talking points you want. They still aren’t going to be successful until they learn implicit knowledge.
It’s a complicated concept, which is why it’s best to work with an experienced team that can guide you through this process. At EasyMovie, we’re experts in the details of knowledge sharing for complex, enterprise organizations.
Schedule a quick consultation and we’ll show you the way!