Without contriving and formalising how can you encourage your team members to share more. Developing good listening skills and providing space physically and mentally where they can talk.
However is the starting point with their own confidence, do they believe they have anything to share. What is their story do they believe they have a relevancy and ideas to contribute. Every team member needs to feel valued and appreciated and then they will believe they have a platform to speak.
The first myth to blow is that information shared needs to be knowledge based. The difference between knowledge and wisdom goes some of the way to demonstrating we all have something to share.
- Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit
- Wisdom is knowing not to add the tomato to a fruit salad
Everyone has some wisdom or an experience worth sharing, more often than not, learnt from a failing. Some-one else’s failure could be the key to several others learning. Creating a culture where “wisdom of mistakes” becomes the buzz will lead to a transparent and open culture.
Stepping out of comfort zones, will blow away layers of hierarchy. Peer to peer sharing and in addition reverse sharing, the most junior sharing with Senior Leads.
Several companies have tried to formalise how they share knowledge, such as Estee Lauder creating “Dream Space” knowledge sharing portal. The success is creating an online platform, however the space might not lead to meaningful relationships.
The secret is to create an informal environment where everyone feels comfortable sharing, however some clever set up that it becomes natural and evolving.
Mentoring schemes in organisations are formalised and structured, however they take administration to set up. The sense of belonging to the organisation’s existing culture might inhibit and deter the people you want to encourage to share, the voices that don’t get heard.
Just as you ask some-one “How are you?” the response will be “fine thank you”.
You want something more than “fine”, you desire and crave a community of people who are sharing their skills, expertise, knowledge and ideas that are so much more than just fine.
Get personal you want to talk, listen and share. If a work community is going to grow together it has to be a common currency and the norm where you listen, talk and share. There will be a phase where it feels contrived however you are striving for an environment where it feels normal and acceptable that you have a coffee and a catch up with the CEO whatever your level.
Imagine your company is a coffee shop where the tables are always full and you circulate around.
It’s good to share, talk and listen – please do get in touch for a virtual coffee with email@example.com