Many of us hide what we know at work because we don’t want to lose the power or status that we think the piece of knowledge gives us. But recent research shows that hoarding information often backfires and can negatively impact the withholder’s growth and development. As a manager, it’s your job to create a culture in which your employees feel comfortable sharing information and speaking openly about their concerns. One way to figure out why your staff is holding back information is to use third-party, anonymous surveys. Then act on this feedback to gain back their trust. And make sure the people you manage understand the consequences of knowledge-hiding. Those who are keeping information in order to protect themselves may not understand that they are actually doing the opposite. Use trainings, newsletters, bulletin boards, and other communication channels to help employees understand why sharing knowledge with your teammates is important.

This tip is adapted from “Why Withholding Information at Work Won’t Give You an Advantage,” by Zhou (Joe) Jiang

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