Have you ever found your business in a situation where you don’t have the information or knowledge to achieve a desired outcome? That’s a knowledge gap.
A simple but potentially detrimental mistake made by an employee; followed by “I didn’t know I was supposed to do it that way!” … is also a knowledge gap.
Identifying knowledge gaps within the workplace is a great way to ensure you are mitigating risk and constantly growing as a company.
Importance of identifying knowledge gaps
Learning and development (L&D) within the workplace is vital for company growth. In an era of unprecedented change, there are constantly new things to be learning as well as adapting to. Consistently identifying knowledge gaps is crucial in order to reach goals and optimise opportunities.
Maximising the potential of every single employee through tailored L&D can assist you in gaining a competitive advantage, and improving overall profitability.
Implementation can enable:
- Increased job satisfaction: L&D within the workplace keeps employees stimulated and motivated. Employees value career growth and are likely to remain loyal if they feel valued by their company.
- Decreased turnover: Employees are more likely to stay in a company for longer when there is an opportunity for growth. Investing in the progression of current employees is also more cost-effective than hiring, which is beneficial for the bottom line.
- Risk mitigation: The more knowledge and skills an employee acquires, the less chance of making mistakes that could be detrimental to your company.
- Increased customer satisfaction: Employees who are confident and knowledgeable in their field are more likely to deliver great customer service, overall increasing customer satisfaction.
How can I identify a knowledge gap?
Identifying knowledge gaps within your company can be done through a gap analysis.
A gap analysis is a process of comparing your company’s current performance with your desired or expected performance. With this analysis, companies can then create and implement a devised action plan to fill the knowledge gaps, and work towards reaching their full potential.
Essentially, a gap analysis can help companies work towards future goals, by mapping out what they can do to get there. To fill a knowledge gap usually requires an employee L&D plan for skills and leadership, which can be constructed through a gap analysis.
Four steps for a gap analysis
Performing a regular gap analysis is a great way to ensure you are consistently adapting and finding ways to improve in all facets of your company.
1. Outline & Define your Goals
List out things you would like to change within your company, or accurately define your career aspirations. Make SMART goals – meaning they are specific, measurable, attainable, realistic and timely.
2. Assess current performance
Think about the current state of your company. Are there discrepancies between your current performance versus how you’d like to be performing? Assess what current factors aren’t lining up with your SMART goals.
3. Identify the gaps
The gaps are the barriers to which you will achieve your goals. Is it a shortage of a specific skill or general knowledge that is stopping you from getting there? Think about why there is a gap between your current performance and desired performance, and the ways you can get there.
4. Map out your plan
Devise a strategic plan to close the gaps. This is where L&D comes in. Whether it’s through leadership development, talent identification or team building; creating a comprehensive step-by-step plan will set you up for success. 93% of employees would stay longer if a company proves they are investing in their career, therefore building a dynamic progression plan designed specifically for them, is likely to influence employee retention.
Whole Brain Thinking® and the HBDI® – a tool for your gap analysis
The HBDI® can act as a great tool within your gap analysis. Discovering what kind of thinkers your employees are and valuing cognitive diversity within your team can help you close the gaps that are putting a halt to your potential success.
With Whole Brain® Thinking you can maximise your talent through strategic collaboration and empowering individuals in a way that’s tailored to their thinking style. Using the HBDI® can assist you in gaining an understanding of how to motivate and retain high-performing employees, by aligning their needs to match your company goals.
Let thinking be your competitive advantage, fill the gaps and build team capability with the HBDI®.
If you want to learn more about how Whole Brain® Thinking and the HBDI® can help you and your organisation, have a look at how it works here or get in touch and we’ll help you find the right solution.