D.B.A. Baker College (Michigan), 2013.
Specialization: Business; Management; Educational Administration
The retention of tacit knowledge in higher learning administration
216 pages. UMI #: AAT 3568224
Citation, Abstract, & Full text in ProQuest Dissertations & Theses Database
Higher education institutions (HEIs) could be among organizations without effective programs for preserving tacit knowledge (TK) when knowledge workers retire, quit, take a leave of absence, or are terminated. The theoretical underpinnings of this study were neuroscience related to brain learning physiology, transformational leadership theory, succession planning theory, and knowledge management theory. Research questions addressed (a) what is the level of awareness of the role of tacit knowledge in the administration of higher education, (b) what methods exist for capturing, sharing, and creating tacit knowledge that can be effectively integrated in succession planning, and (c) what unique elements exist in the administration of higher-education that either support or prevent tacit knowledge preservation, sharing, and creation through succession planning initiatives. Data collection involved interviews and document review at a Midwestern college. Findings included the need for trust and open communication and leader behavior to support optimal TK transfer. Participants were aware of TK and its importance and recognized a connection between TK and succession planning. Participants suggested high level activities; emphasized debriefing for verifying TK transfer, transfer of roles and responsibilities over time, continued access to mentors, and allocation of adequate time to deploy these steps in succession planning. The researcher developed a nine-step process model for integrating TK in institutions with a formal succession planning program. This process model includes organization-wide education and communication focused on the concepts of TK and involves steps for capture, measurement, and sustained retention of all forms of TK as part of institutional culture.