Bill Gates, Power comes not from knowledge kept, but from knowledge shared

The old saying “Knowledge is power” sometimes makes people keep knowledge to themselves. They believe that this makes them more valuable to the company. Power comes not from knowledge kept, but from knowledge shared.

A company’s values and reward system should reflect that idea. Knowledge management can help any business in four major areas: planning, customer service, training, and teamwork on projects. If you haven’t done any work on knowledge management in your company yet, consider picking one or two areas in which to begin knowledge management projects.

You can use the success of your projects in those areas to encourage knowledge management projects in your other business areas. Within a few years all leading companies will have achieved high levels of digitally aided knowledge sharing.

Knowledge management is a fancy term for a simple idea. You’re managing data, documents, and people’s efforts. Your aim should be to improve the way people work together, share ideas, sometimes argue, and build on one another’s ideas—and then act together for a common purpose.

The boss’s role in raising a company’s corporate IQ is to create an atmosphere that promotes knowledge sharing and teamwork, to make a priority of those areas in which knowledge sharing is most valuable, to provide the digital tools that make knowledge sharing possible, and to reward people for contributing to a full flow of information.