Process Automation Knowledge Transfer

I wanted to share a recap a presentation Eastman Chemical Company’s Danaca Jordan and I did last week at the Emerson Exchange conference. Our collaboration, New Kids on the I/O Block: Transferring Knowledge to Millennials proved to generate quite a bit of discussion and even some raised emotions in the two session in which we presented. Our abstract:

As retirement rates accelerate in Western nations, efficiently transferring knowledge and lessons learned to new instrumentation and automation professionals grows in importance. Given generational differences in learning styles and limited spare time to develop training, what are some effective ways to accomplish this? A Boomer and a Millennial collaborate to share practical methods to take back with you.

Here’s is the presentation posted in Slideshare:


It’s always somewhat risky to generalize, even when it comes to generational differences. This prompted some discussion in one of the sessions of the depth of knowledge possessed by members of the Millennial generation. A spirited defense was offered by one of the Millennials. All in all, cooler heads prevailed with the recognition that each generation thinks has its strengths, weaknesses, and perceptions formed by the age in which they lived.

The three guiding principles we wanted to have people take away from the presentation are:

  1. Responsibilities—there are roles for the company, experts, and trainees to play. Companies must provide the time for knowledge transfer to occur and a collaborative partnership is needed for the experts with knowledge and experience and the trainees who have the knowledge of the tools and formats to best capture and package that knowledge
  2. Format of the content—short & focused, searchable & filterable, and accessible on a wide variety of devices
  3. Interaction—provide methods for two-way interaction among mentors and peers, such as documentation which allows comments
Guiding Principle - Responsibilities

Guiding Principle – Responsibilities

Gary Mintchell has a great recap of the talk on his Manufacturing Connection blog.

We hope the presentation has a few nuggets of value for you and we’d love your feedback in the comments below.

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