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Knowledge Transfer Or Training ?

Updated: Dec 4, 2023

KT vs Training

Knowledge transfer and training are two distinct but interconnected concepts. While they share some similarities, they also have key differences.

Knowledge transfer focuses on sharing information, expertise, and insights from one individual to another. It involves the exchange of tacit and explicit knowledge, emphasizing practical skills and experiences.

On the other hand, training is a structured process of enhancing knowledge, skills, and abilities in a specific area. It involves formal instruction, learning activities, and evaluation to acquire or improve specific competencies.

Knowledge transfer has a broader scope. It encompasses various forms such as mentoring, hands-on practice, training, and informal conversations. The purpose is to disseminate expertise, insights, and lessons learned across individuals.

Training is specific and targeted. It focuses on developing particular skills or competencies based on predefined learning objectives.

Knowledge transfer leverages the expertise and experiences to transfer valuable insights and practical knowledge to individuals.

Training is often provided in a formal setting, such as workshops, seminars, e-learning platforms, or professional development programs. It follows a structured curriculum, learning materials, and assessments, delivering consistent and standardized instruction.

Knowledge transfer can be an ongoing and continuous process happening organically over time as individuals collaborate, engage in discussions, and share experiences.

Training has a defined start and end point. It has a specific duration for instruction, practice, and evaluation.

Knowledge transfer emphasizes practical application and real-life examples. It allows individuals to learn from experiences, providing insights and guidance for specific situations or challenges.

Training incorporates practical elements but focuses more on structured learning, skill development, and providing theoretical knowledge and techniques that can be applied in various contexts.

Both knowledge transfer and training are valuable approaches to learning and development. Knowledge transfer leverages expertise and experiences to foster collaboration, while training provides a structured approach to acquire specific skills or knowledge.


  • Stein, E. W., & Zwass, V. (1995). Actualizing organizational memory with information systems. Information Systems Research, 6(2), 85-117.

  • Darr, E. D., Argote, L., & Epple, D. (1995). The acquisition, transfer, and depreciation of knowledge in service organizations: Productivity in franchises. Management Science, 41(11), 1750-1762.

  • Addicott, R., & McGivern, G. (2007). The dark side of knowledge transfer. Journal of health, organization and management, 21(1), 41-45.

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