"We've spent $200 million in advertising and $40 million in consulting fees just to keep our nose above water--there has to be a better way!" - Fortune 500 CEO

Sharing information with your employees 

The most positive example here is one firm that set up electronic distribution of its daily operations results, and then distributed them to every employee in the company first thing every morning. This increased morale and productivity of managers and employees alike. Moreover, the line managers and senior staffers were able to identify problems with the reports before upper management acted on them, and lower level employees were able to understand the information needs of upper management so as to build advanced reporting capabilities into future releases of the company’s product and further enhance the understanding of the executives into the workings of the firm.

(Note that monthly, quarterly and annual summaries and trends were not distributed except as they were made public by the executive office. The daily reports were distributed as text rather than tables to inhibit unauthorized compilation and the reports focused on the top 10 to 20 performers in each class of business rather than a comprehensive list of results.)

Philosophical note on sharing information with your employees–
Too much information is just as bad as too little information. However, people are generally able to sort through a moderate over abundance of information. Unfortunately, there is no recovery from not providing enough information for someone to do their job well. It is better to err on the side of too much rather than too little information shared.

Another example of the critical value of sharing information with your employees is when the information is the product: consulting services, call centers and publishing operations, among other possibilities.

Many firms use internal publishing processes to enable contributions of best practices, news, documents and templates, and other information resources from employees to other employees. Knowledge management overlays this with the ability (for the company) to control who can publish what, and who can see or use any given resource. The value of the control has to be weighed against the cost of the implementation (software, hardware, changes in workflow and organization).

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