Successful Knowledge Transfer

As a reminder (from my last post), I just started a job as VP of Product Development for the Social Intelligence division of SDL.  I wrapped up my second week of work at SDL on Friday.  Last week’s focus was knowledge transfer (to me) from Ericka, who had been “Acting VP” for the Social Intelligence development team, in addition to her regular job, reporting to SDL’s CTO.

Knowledge transfer can often be a difficult part of the ramp-up process for a new employee.  The situation is difficult if the outgoing employee is no longer employed by the organization – the necessary knowledge may already be gone.  Similarly, if a new position is created, there won’t be a single person with the necessary knowledge to provide.  Finally, in some cases, there’s resentment or resistance to the organizational change, making the knowledge transfer strained or stressful, since the person with the right information is uncooperative.

Luckily, for me, I didn’t have any of those obstacles.  It’s rare to have an “instant connection” with a colleague, but I found that with Ericka.  From the first day, we meshed well and understood how to communicate with each other.  We quickly developed a rapport and a high level of mutual trust.  Because of that connection, the knowledge transfer from Ericka to me went very smoothly.

For now…I’ll leave you with this thought:

Successful knowledge transfer is, traditionally, difficult to achieve.  It works best when there’s single expert providing the necessary transition. 

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