Stop the Knowledge Drain

January 10, 2018


One of the biggest concerns facing organizations is knowledge drain, the rapid declining of knowledge transfer and retention within a company. Company downsizing, outsourcing and other cost cutting trends have produced a generation of more career-mobile employees who are not as attached to their organizations.


People are increasingly pursuing the jobs and endeavors for which they have the most passion. And often, they leave their organizations and take all of the skills and best practices that they have learned with them. These are employees who bring invaluable knowledge to your workplace. You want to retain these employees, by not only keeping them plugged into your company, but you also want to keep them engaged and collaborating. You may have new employees coming into the organization who are struggling to learn company policies and initiatives, and more than anything need extra guidance from others initially in order to do their jobs well. 

So how do you keep your employees engaged in the knowledge-sharing process?

Create a Culture Of Knowledge Sharing

The best thing you can do to stop knowledge drain is to develop a culture that supports the ongoing transfer of knowledge and collaboration. Show that your company realizes the importance of ongoing learning- and put steps in place to showcase that.

How does your company reward collaboration and knowledge sharing? Does it promote best practices? Or do your employees cling to old and outdated knowledge? Shift your company culture to expect knowledge sharing and even make aims to start rewarding those behaviors. 

What’s Important?

For your company, it’s key that you identify subject matter experts across your business. Who is the most effective at sales negotiation? Who is the marketing whiz? Who knows company policy- and the implementation of it- like the back of their hand? From there you can then develop opportunities for these employees to share their knowledge and best practices within your company.

Preventing knowledge drain comes down to your company culture, and the value that you place on engaging your employees.  It also pays to have a place to store your company’s collective knowledge and best practices, so that it can be easily passed on to others. That way there are systems in place to not only allow for current employees to collaborate and engage with one another, but serve as a living resource for everyone within your company. 

By having a culture in place that consistently supports your team’s efforts to share their knowledge and insights, you’ll keep your team learning and engaged. And you can rest easy knowing that your new employees will be able to hit the ground running.

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