Trust-Based Knowledge Management System Building

Trust-Based Knowledge Management System Building

Andrea Bencsik (Széchenyi István University of Győr, Hungary & Selye J. University Komarno, Slovakia) and Irma Rácz (Széchenyi István University of Győr, Hungary)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-9562-7.ch007
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This chapter introduces the importance of trust in knowledge management system building. It argues that the relationships among organizational culture, problems of knowledge sharing, and HR features are in close correlation with each other. The main aspect of the chapter is to show the general requirements and pre-requisites of knowledge management system building based on trust. The authors aim to reveal the theoretical aspect of trust-based culture and knowledge management system building, and the HR's tasks connected to these two ideas. The chapter presents three case studies on three different companies' practices, a multinational, big company, and an institution. This chapter shows samples, best practices, critical steps that can ensure success to the companies that want to start building a knowledge management system.
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What We Should Know About Trust

According to Davenport and Prusak (2000), sharing of knowledge is an unnatural expectation because people consider their personal knowledge to be valuable and important. This means that an accumulation of knowledge and a suspicion of knowledge originating from others are natural. So it is very important to encourage people to share their knowledge and to build up trust. Many international surveys analyse the link between these two factors.

Trust has been described by many in a variety of different ways, according to the angle from which it is analysed (sociology, psychology, economics). The most widely accepted approach views trust as the willingness to be positive about the actions of others (Blanchard et al, 2013).

The trust can also be viewed as an asset which leads to a new intellectual capital through the exchange and combination mechanisms of knowledge. Consequently, trust plays an important role, especially in an innovative environment (Smedlund, 2008). Trust is a part of leadership qualities which qualify the relationship between workers and leaders. Those employees who trust their superiors and their organisation, are creative, risk-taking and cooperative (Dittmar et al, 2007)

In the commitment – trust model of Zeffane, et al. (2011) the writers emphasize that commitment and trust are important transmitter variables of organizational commitment. This study focuses on the variables of knowledge sharing, and demonstrates that associates of an organization only agree to share their knowledge with others if they accept the general aims of the organisation.

Zeffane et al. (2011) claim that trust changes with time, as individuals become more and more comfortable in each other’s company and as they recognise each other’s trustworthiness and competence.

Garvin (2007) refers to trust in the practices of management and its effects on productivity.

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