What are the biggest barriers?
- Knowledge is power—too often people see knowledge hoarding as a way to personal power. However by the same argument, knowledge sharing is empowerment.
- People need to move from building empires to building new relationships.
- The individual work bias of the past (“I have to solve this all by myself”) is shifting to a teamwork and a collaborative bias.
- Local focus is often a perceived barrier to knowledge management, which can be converted to a network focus by the establishment of communities of practice.
- “Not invented here” can be a real barrier to the use of other’s knowledge, if the relationship of trust is missing. Trust will grow with face-to-face knowledge sharing, and few people resist a request for help.
- People are often afraid that errors will be exposed and punished, and are therefore unwilling to share what they may see as failures. This is why techniques such as Retrospects accentuate learning from success.
- People feel they are not paid to share. Knowledge management is often seen as not part of normal business. Preserving the value of our knowledge assets is not seen as core business.
- People feel they have no time to share. This is a very real barrier – most people are ‘maxed out’ at the moment. So we need to make knowledge sharing as quick and efficient as we can, because the truth really lies in recognizing that we don’t have the time NOT to share.
Knowledge = Power (Francis Bacon)—or—power=knowledge, shared (Reid Smith)